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tent camping in November

by , Posted to on 08/18/2009 1:33 PM | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 08/21/2007
Location: ND
My sons, (32&19) have talked me into camping in the grasslands this fall while we are hunting mule deer. I have camped in a tent in alot of different weather including snow, but I am wondering about food for a week. De-hydrated, canned, or fresh and/or a mix of the three. We could pack coolers with fresh food and it could either be frozen all week or no ice in two days. Just wondering what you guys do on a tent camp week hunt.
"A true friend is one who overlooks your failures and tolerates your sucesses"
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/18/2009 2:08 PM | Reply #1 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 07/14/2003
Location: ND
What kind of tents are you staying in?

When wall tenting (canvas) we pack normal foods from frozen hamburger, cans of beans, canned vegetables, eggs, etc.  Usually if weather is going to be cold it isn't a big issue with the food as we place most in color inside the tent and it stays just fine.  Outside, yeah, it will freeze.

On warm weather trips we bring coolers that are loaded with frozen jugs of water.  One cooler is designated for ice ONLY.  It is taped shut with duct tape or other tape so no air can get into the cooler.  Then we transfer an ice jug or two over to another cooler to keep things the temp they need to be at.  Just have to keep the sun off the cooler and they stay pretty good.

Now, if you plan on doing a more "rough" style of camping I would stick to MRE type meals.  You don't have to worry about anything other than having water.  And heck, the MREs aren't all that bad actually.

Other canned good work too.  Dehydrated as well.  Kind of depends on what the tents are, if you have room for extra coolers, if you want big camp dinner, want more relaxed type dinners, etc.  All I know is most often a guy takes WAY too much food and has to haul back food when the trip if over.  Do a menu and it will help cut down on un-needed supplies.




 
Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/18/2009 2:22 PM | Reply #2 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 03/10/2005
Location: SD

I have an outfitters tent we use every prairee season.  If you are driving to where you are settting up the tent, then there is no sense in not eating good.  Keep away from the dehydrated crap.  It is expensive and tastless.  We usually eat the same menu. 
Breakfast - Pancakes, bacon, and eggs with coffee/juice
Lunch - Sanwiches, with granola bars for mid day snacks
Dinner - day 1- Spagetti with garlic bread
                day 2 - Red beans and rice with sausage cut up into it
                day 3 - Beef Stew with bread and butter
                day 4 - Chilli with crackers
                day 5 - Steak with buttered noodles

Check the weather.  If it is going to be really cold you won't have to worry about ice.  If it is going to be warm freeze several milk conainters of ice and then they last longer and you won't have to worry about the mess of melting water.  Also if it is going to be warm wrap your meat in seveal layers of aluminum foil.  It will keep the meat frozen a lot longer.  Let me know if you need any more help.  Bob

Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/18/2009 2:55 PM | Reply #3 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 08/21/2007
Location: ND
Just bought a 12'X12' Alaknak wall tent at Cabelas, and ordered a cylinder stove online. Looking for 3 cots now, don't want to chance using air mattresses that time of year. Thanks guys for your input, it was like a mental block thinking about the options with the food.
"A true friend is one who overlooks your failures and tolerates your sucesses"
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/18/2009 3:18 PM | Reply #4 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 07/14/2003
Location: ND
You are in comfort and I doubt you will be taking that size of a tent in with anything other than the pickup.  Make a menu.  Enjoy warm meals on the stove.

Cots.  I have a very good cot for you to look into.  Pretty spendy and a little slow on putting together but a huge space saver and very comfortable.  Tried it out a couple times and it is a very good cot.  Will get another if we ever camp with four to five people.

Here it is:  Cam-O-Cot (and they are on sale!)

Some other hints.  Get carpet.  I bought some thin padded tight berber carpet.  Cut it to fit the tent.  Nothing like enjoying the snap crackle pop of the stove and having comfy carpet after a hard day of hunting!  Just make sure you cut out a spot where the wood burning stove sits.

I also would get a camp toilet.  We farmerized a five gallon bucket by mounting a toilet seat on it.  Use heavy duty garbage bags and have a plastic coffee can to store the toilet paper.  Much better than squatting next to a tree!

Inside the tent.  Put everything in totes.  Totes are waterproof, keep mice away, can be stack-able, can be put outside with no problem, etc.  We packed all our gear in it including clothes.

Also get a paper towel dispencer you can hang from the tent wall.  I still just use twine and a stick from a fallen tree.

Have shelving if you can hang it on the wall.  There are some good shelves on Cabelas and other camping web pages.  I don't have one yet but I know I want one.  It's nice to have things off the table, off the camp kitchen (I also suggest a camp kitchen!) and out of the way.  Actually, this camp kitchen has cupboards.  I will have to upgrade I think!!!!

Um what else.  Oh, have a pee jug.  Nothing worse than waking up in the night and have to undo the tent wall, put boots on, etc to go outside and take a leak.  A gallon jug works just fine.  Of course, you will want a cap for it!

Headlamps are a must.  A remote control lantern style light is nice so you can pop it on.  Also, check into whether you can hang a propane lantern from the ceiling of your tent.  I still like having propane because it gives off good light and also acts as a source of heat.

I'm sure I'll think of more later but those are some suggestions for now.  I wish I was camping this year!!!!




 
Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/18/2009 5:15 PM | Reply #5 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 09/10/2005
Location: nd
we always stored our stuff in a horse trailer.  Tim you would have loved this set up.  The guys I elk hunted with had a 30 foot horse trailer we kept all our stuff in year around it had all the cabelas cooking equipment i it.  The propane stove  and the griddle and the camp kitchen.  We did all our cooking and cleaning in the trailer do to bears mostly.  There was usually 10 or twelve of us that went.  We had a huge army tent for the mess hall and card playing on stormy days and then 4 wall tents that we slept in.  We put tarps over our tents to help the snow slide off.  We had a guy that was about 60 years old from louisiana that did all the cooking we all pitched in 100 bucks and he took care of the groceries and the booze.  The nose of the trailer had a door that opened to the bar.  We never left civilization without 40 cases of beer but we stayed for two weeks.  My wife always accused us of just partying but most years we would get at least 7 or 8 elk so she couldnt make the charges stick.  Sorry for such a long post but with cool weather and this thread it brought back good memories.
you gonna set steel or whistle dixie
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/18/2009 5:32 PM | Reply #6 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 01/29/2002
Location: ND
When we tent it, we have everything on ice in coolers. Our menu for the evening meal is ribeyes, t-bones, prime rib, chicken, chili, and burgers. Sandwiches or brats usually for the noon eats. Granola bars and toast for breakfast. Here is a picture of the inside of our tent.

Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/18/2009 11:42 PM | Reply #7 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 08/18/2009
Location: ND
She sure aint the prettiest girl at the dance but she sure can dance.




UserFiles/24/249/24935/Tent.jpg
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 00:18 AM | Reply #8 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 09/12/2008
Location: MT
You will like the Alaknak.  My hunting partner and I have used one in Montana for late-season elk hunts and have been very pleased with its performance.  It may not be as heavy-duty as a canvas wall tent, but it's much lighter and easier to maintain.  We used it in below zero weather with no issues.  I advise to purchase the floor liner and would strongly consider getting the vestibule as well.  If you're not in bear country, there's plenty of room to cook in there, plus room to store packs, coolers, take off dirty boots etc.  Cabela's also sells accessory hangers for the center pole of the tent.  They're worth their weight in gold!!  You can hang your lantern, wet clothes and a cajillion other things from them. 

I don't know what stove you purchased, but here's a link to an OUTSTANDING stove.  http://www.fourdog.com/   We did a lot of research on stoves, bought this one (made one at a time by a guy in Minnesota) and were glad we did.  We got the fourdog model, but you would be o.k. with the threedog model.  I highly recommend the water jacket as well.  Nothing like ready-made hot water on demand for washing up after a hard days hunt, for dish washing etc.

As for meals, I agree with the others - - plan a menu.  When we haven't done that we always overpacked.   One easy and time saving thing to do is make the majority of your meals ahead of time and freeze them in single serving freezer or vacuum pack bags.  When you come in at night, the bulk of your cooking is already done - - just toss the packs into boiling water and you're set.  Individual size portions work best because they thaw more evenly, are easier to serve - - just cut open and put on plate - - and easier to judge how much you need.  This works great with entrees and some side dishes.  Not only have you eleminated a lot of cooking time, but you will have little to no dishes to wash!  We've brought everything from creamed pheasant to favorite casseroles to yankee pot roast to meatballs to BBQ pork loin and ribs to - - well, you get the idea.  Meals we cook on the spot are usually simple to prepare but are one of the best parts of elk or deer camp.  We'll reserve a night for rib eyes on the grill, another for good old fashioned deer sausage, fried onions and potatoes and HOPEFULLY one for fresh tenderloin.  Damn, I'm getting hungry!  Lunches are sandwiches, trail mix etc.  Breakfasts are big if we get our animals - - quick stuff (oatmeal, scrambled egg packets, p-butter etc.) if we're out the door at at 4:30-5:00 a.m. to get into hunting country by daybreak. 

One of the things I'm going to try this year is carry a back-pack stove and pot in my day-pack.  These things weigh mere ounces and can boil a liter of water in 3 minutes.  I'm thinking that it will be nice treat out in the field to make a hot cup of coffee or tea during a break and also have a hot lunch of whatever I can dream up (Ramen noodles, dehyd. soups, etc) at lunch time.  I'm thinking that this might add nicely to the experience. 

Anyway, just some thoughts on being comfortable, efficient and enjoying the hunt.  ALWAYS have first-aid essentials, basic medicines and survival gear along.    GOOD LUCK! 

  
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 05:53 AM | Reply #9 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 06/03/2007
Location: ND
On warm weather trips we bring coolers that are loaded with frozen jugs of water.  One cooler is designated for ice ONLY.  It is taped shut with duct tape or other tape so no air can get into the cooler.  Then we transfer an ice jug or two over to another cooler to keep things the temp they need to be at.  Just have to keep the sun off the cooler and they stay pretty good.
 
Hey Tim, 

Back when we hunted wildernesses we also used frozen milk jugs kept in a cooler. But we would also put dry ice in with the milk jug cooler. It would really keep them frozen until we needed them in  another cooler. We generally would stay a week to 12 days and needed the ice to keep our food and the meat from the kills cold.
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 08:38 AM | Reply #10 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 07/14/2003
Location: ND
Hold-High,

I can't remember the dang stove we have but it looks a lot like the stove you linked to. Ours is pretty good (especially compared to our old crapper!).  Only complaint is the water tank gets to be a buggar sometimes because the temp changes from a roaring stove to a cold stove swells the tank and can make it a sucker to take the tank off sometimes.  Very minor beef, however and I'd also suggest the same stove to others.

Last year I'm not even sure we put the tank on.  Almost easier just to fire up the stove and boil water.  Usually, when we used it in the past we used the water for rinse and body wash water.

Now, for individual packaging of meals  Yeah, we've talked about it.  And yeah, sometimes a guy gets back to camp past dark and he is whooped tired.  So tired that all a guy could stare at was the sleeping bag!  Having access to quick lunches would be nice.  Regardless, like you said, the best part about hunting is deer camp itself.

Day packin'.  Yup, I bought a little stove and a nice pack set of pots.  I don't know if I will utilize it this year.  Time is running thin with everything that seems to be popping up.  I planned to use the little stove and essential pack gear to head out on an isolated bow hunt this year.  Still might get to do it but I haven't even done any trial runs, packed my pack, adjusted it, etc, etc.  Might have to write it off until next year.  As for out rifle hunting, yeah a guy needs to definitely take a break.  I end up just sippin' on water and granola bars but a hot cup of something would definitely be nice on day breaks!

kraftmatic,

Ironically, my dad's girlfriend bought a horse trailer.  It has living quarters in it and I believe is a three horse trailer.  He's going to insulate the living quarters and wire it up for better lighting, etc.  I could see that being a very good tool for quick hunts, etc.  And yeah, we only usually had a couple nights of sippin' on beverages.  Heck, really only one.  After that to darn tired and it doesn't take much to get tippy!  Plus, then you have to get out of the sleeping bag a few more times a night.  Gets cold when a guy gets lazy and doesn't stoke the stove!!!!

Can't wait for the WY trip!  Just wish I wasn't moving right now.  I can't enjoy much at the moment!

Back on subject.  Yes, a rain-fly or vestibule or whatever you want to call them is a must.  Keeps condensation off the tent, helps slide snow and obviously repels water.  Another BIG SUGGESTION.  Is to take the tent stakes that come with your tent and throw them in the garbage.  Go get some rebar and make 12 to 14 inch stakes.  There are different ways to do it but make a good surface for you to pound on and something for you to grab onto when you pull them from the ground.  Dad used flat washers and welded them to the rebar but some broke.  I think that would still work if the weld job was a little better .  Another way is to just tee them.  Bending them would work too to put a loop into them but then there isn't a great pounding surface.

I don't know what stakes come with a tent now a days but I have yet to find anything that works better than rebar.  It binds into the soil, you can get rough with it and it gives you assurance you won't have any wind problems or slack problems.

Wow, I get going on this camping stuff!  Sorry for the long post!





 
Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 09:41 AM | Reply #11 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 12/16/2001
Location: ND
If you plan to use some of the pre-packaged dehydrated foods, go and buy a few of the different brands and their offerings to sample.  Some are really good.  Some really suck.  Try them now at home and find what you like best.  It'll make that week that much more enjoyable.
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 11:00 AM | Reply #12 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 09/11/2002
Location: ND

One word can sum up your food needs......HORMEL.  Chili or stew, dorito chips, bread and margarine, and of course a beer to wash it down and put you to sleep.  Keeps the camp smelling like camp, and works well for staying regular.

I say to hell with that pot o' gold.

Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 11:01 AM | Reply #13 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 07/14/2003
Location: ND
We always have a night of chili!  Can't have camp without it!




 
Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 1:26 PM | Reply #14 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 01/08/2004
Location: ND
Seems like a lot of work, get a hotel and eat in a resturant. Looks like it will be cheaper than a lot of the stuff mentioned and pictured on here. Hardly looks like roughing it. A lot of work to set up and tear down.
IT IS BETTER TO ASK FOR FORGIVENESS THAN ASK FOR PERMISSION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 1:38 PM | Reply #15 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 02/13/2006
Location: ND

Hormel chili, sounds like a disaster waiting to happen when climbing a butte. HAHAHA!

Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 1:44 PM | Reply #16 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 07/14/2003
Location: ND
It's not roughing it at all with the setup we have (or any of the others).  With exception of cold temps, wind and rain.  Snow is a blessing for the most part as long as it ain't too much.

Hotels are fine and dandy.  So are restaurant meals but one can't explain to another that doesn't "get" what camp is like.  Those of us that camp understand .

Not to mention, I wake up, take a leak and start glassing the countryside for that big muley.  And hey, in the Badlands (where I hunt anyway) the closest town with a hotel is more than an hour away.  That's two hours drive time each day.  Half tank of gas.  60 to 90 dollar hotel rooms.  30 to 50 dollar restaurant bills.  Add that up with a few years of hunting trips and the wall tent and everything is almost paid for.  Not to mention, wall tenting or camping in any form in the Badlands is much more hunter efficient than driving to and from a hotel each day and night.

Setup is fun. Tear down isn't.




 
Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 2:19 PM | Reply #17 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 02/20/2009
Location: nd
We typically plan our meals so that the stuff that keeps the longest is the last meal...eg. sausage & spuds or steaks that were kept frozen. We'll have the walleye and shrimp ring n the first couple days, precook some chili and soup and then freeze it and warm them up after they start thawing or at the tail end of the trip. A fresh non-frozen pan of lasagna cooked the day before we leave and eaten the 1st or 2nd nite is a real treat...especially after getting back to camp in the dark we don't like to cook for an hour before we can eat. Save the meals that take a lot of prep/cooking time for several days into the hunt...then the guy that already filled a tag is elected the camp bitch for those meals...while the rest of us are still hunting he's getting the meal ready to go for when we arrive after dark (or mid morning). We also try to do the cooking over a fire or in one kettle to minimize dishes.
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 2:35 PM | Reply #18 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 02/13/2006
Location: ND
Does anyone walk in with tents and really rough it?  I have been wanting to try that but can't find anyone who is willing to put on the miles.
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 3:47 PM | Reply #19 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 12/19/2001
Location: ND
        would love to do a hike in 5 to 10 miles back in where there are no roads and hunt for a week I think good things would come from it
LUV2HNT   Williston N,D
Re: tent camping in November
by on 08/19/2009 3:58 PM | Reply #20 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 07/14/2003
Location: ND
enslow,

This year I had full intention to walk in on a Friday and not return until Sunday.  I bought some supplies early this spring and started reading up on other things.  There actually have been some good threads on FBO dealing with backpack hunts, etc.  I have some of them saved in my favorites (subscribed to them).  Can dig them up if you'd like.

Maybe this year I will get a chance.  Have to see.  If I do, Dani would be my hunting partner but I don't know if she'd like sleeping under the stars or not.  I use to do it in Boy Scouts.  Piece of cake unless it rains!  Then again, take a good bivy or just a chunk of plastic and deal with it!  Ha!

Anyway, yeah, I will be doing it but probably won't happen this year due to commitments, trips already planned, etc.  We'll see if I can make it happen though!

Grasslands gets shut down like they are talking many of us will have to get the backpacks out because it won't make any sense to hike in and hike back out each day.  Minimal roads will not allow someone to do day walks anymore, at least efficiently.




 
Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 
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Posted On: 08/18/2009 1:33 PM
5560 Views, 62 Comments

Tags: tent, camping, november, food, wondering, grasslands, hunting, talked, deer, sons
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