The only difference between meat storage for the upcoming bison hunt and any other hunt is needing to store a lot more meat, and the need to keep it away from bears. Which explains the pile of meat care equipment shown below: eight game bags, and 300 feet of paracord.
Paracord isn’t the lightest or smallest, but it is economical and a good balance between weight/bulk on one side and easy gripping and not grooving limbs on the other. Fortunately treeline in the GYE goes way up to 9000+ feet, and the spruce are surprisingly robust, presumably due to the abundant water and long summer days. Hanging meat at a comparable altitude even as close as the Bob would not be so practical.
I’ve been using some basic game bags I sewed from cotton muslin for 4+ years now. They use one rectangular piece of fabric, french seams on the sides (to prevent seam hole elongation and eventual failure), and a simple paracord drawstring with a reinforced grommet. Those bags are quite bulky, and while the slow drying properties of cotton is actually handy for hot and dry hunts like New Zealand in summer, it doesn’t make sense for Montana in the fall, so did what I’ve intended to do for a long time and made a pile of new ones out of light polyester.
Joanne’s has a decent range of light polys, but finding one which is both tightly woven and has no stretch takes some doing. A light color with some flair is a bonus.
I’m packing eight bags for this hunt, five smaller ones (18″ by 26″) and three bigger ones (24″ by 30″). As can be seen above, my assembly line approach and generally packed schedule lately did not make for neat sewing, but with a stitch length around 1mm and burly nylon thread, I’m confident they’ll last many years, and I’ll never lack for extras in the future, even when I have one animal aging in the fridge when another hunt comes along.
All those games bags, all that cord, and a good stash of latex gloves (Brucellosis is common in Yellowstone bison) fill the above stuff sack. Not bad for the job at hand.