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Old 03-31-2021, 05:06 PM
Macdrizzle Macdrizzle is offline
 
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Default Portable freezer recommendation for Fish

Hi,

The family and I are planning on doing a BC trip this spring for some chinook salmon. Will be planning on taking the trailer. I was just wondering what are some recommended setups people use to preserve their catch when you're out and about in nature.

Would like to avoid renting a place or AirBnB so looking at outdoor camping type scenario with freezers. I know many of you are quite handy and creative with these things and looking for some ideas and setups.

Thanks!

Mike
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  #2  
Old 03-31-2021, 06:42 PM
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Robins36 Robins36 is offline
 
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Most places that have boat launches will have large walk in freezers that you can use for overnight storage of your catch for a small fee.
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Old 03-31-2021, 07:06 PM
fishtank fishtank is offline
 
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Put some 2L bottle with water in the freezer overnight , then into styrofoam box should be good 24-48 hr
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Old 03-31-2021, 07:48 PM
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Buy 6 yeti big coolers for $3000, easy.
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Old 03-31-2021, 07:51 PM
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EZM EZM is offline
 
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Portable freezer in back of truck, and a powered camp site ......... plug it in and fill er' up. On your way home, top it up with ice. Generator would work too.

I've thought of doing the same thing actually. Can't see why that wouldn't work.
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Old 03-31-2021, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mooseknuckle View Post
Buy 6 yeti big coolers for $3000, easy.
That would be the right way lol but not practical for most folks I know! Lol
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  #7  
Old 03-31-2021, 10:57 PM
Drewski Canuck Drewski Canuck is offline
 
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The real need for a freezer is the long drive home. You can ice down with Salt Ice and a good large cooler at the coast, drain off any water, and when you are in a large center, pick up 10 - 15 pounds of dry ice. Put the dry ice on the top of the cooler and close the lid (Pellet style is way better to fill small voids). Next, take a roll of duct tape and tape the seam between the lid and the cooler. Now you have a solid seal that will keep things very cold for very long.

Dry ice is about - 78 C. Stuff will actually freeze in the cooler and you will be good for a long day of travel in the hottest conditions.

Dry ice is CO2 and heavier than air. Do not put a cooler with dry ice in the back of a compartment where passengers or pets are, like a Suburban. It can suffocate in closed conditions with poor ventilation.

Drewski
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  #8  
Old 03-31-2021, 11:04 PM
schleprock schleprock is offline
 
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I would forget about the freezer and just use a good quality cooler full of ice. The fish will stay fresh during your trip plus the way home too. When you get home, process your catch how you desire and then freeze them.
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  #9  
Old 04-01-2021, 08:20 AM
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Find a used chest freezer on buy and sell 100-150$ get one that about 10-12 sq/ft and plug it in if your renting a place or hotel. All coastal fishing towns are set up for it. That's what we do tried the ice thing it adds up big time if your buying sea ice. Two trips the freezer would be paid for also it's yours for your fish only. I've had some of my springs go home with other groups when they left while I was out fishing when using the community freezer. Make it lockable to keep others out and that will help keep the lid tight for the drive home. it's a 15 hour drive home for us and the fish are still cold and crispy.
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Old 04-01-2021, 08:31 AM
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When we hunt in the states or go to B.C. fishing we take a 4 cubic foot chest freezer in the box of the truck, there is a canopy on the box. There is a 110 volt inverter plug in the box for when you are driving to power the freezer and we plug it into the Motel when we stop overnight. We tried all the other options, salt ice, dry ice, plug in Coleman coolers etc. This is the easiest and surest way of keeping meat or fish frozen and the freezer is usable year round for regular freezer duty. Paid $180 for it brand new, bought it in the states at Home Depot.
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Old 04-01-2021, 10:01 AM
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How long do you intend to fish? How long do you plan to take for your trip home? That will determine best method for transport.
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  #12  
Old 04-01-2021, 10:01 AM
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surhuntsalot surhuntsalot is offline
 
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Your best setup depends on your travel plans. The process most of my guests use is they take their catch to the local fish processing facility. There their catch is portioned to their liking, flash frozen (very important in preserving freshness), and stored until their departure. Their catch is packed into coolers (styrofoam, or Yeti will all work). The top couple layers are wrapped in newspaper, and this will keep their catch frozen for and easy 24hr-36hr drive, if the outer layer softens a bit, itís still fine to go in the freezer. Do not pack frozen fish in ice, it will thaw quicker, This would be my recommendation, as fish not properly packaged can go rancid quite quickly. You donít want to put all the expense into getting your catch, only to have it go bad. I see a lot of people bring a freezer, wrap their fish in Saran Wrap, when they get home they have to thaw it, portion it, and re freeze ir... if not done properly your catch wonít last long. I know it can cost a couple hunde dollars to have your catch professionally processed, but a year later you can eat a piece of salmon that tastes like it was caught last week. A one person possession limit of salmon, Ling, halibut,and rockfish, will usually fit in a 150 L cooler. Crab can be a bit bulky, but if a bit extra room is needed, a styrofoam cooler can be picked up for about $25...

Another thing to consider is transport regulations. When your fish is processed at a licensed facility, the fish can be cut up (portioned), and your receipt is all thatís required for transport. If you ďDo it yourself ď, youíll be required to keep fish whole, and separate in order to have species, number of fish, and length verified.

Any questions or suggestions you may have about transport, or pending regulations/changes... feel free to dm me...
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  #13  
Old 04-01-2021, 11:48 AM
Scott h Scott h is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by surhuntsalot View Post
Your best setup depends on your travel plans. The process most of my guests use is they take their catch to the local fish processing facility. There their catch is portioned to their liking, flash frozen (very important in preserving freshness), and stored until their departure. Their catch is packed into coolers (styrofoam, or Yeti will all work). The top couple layers are wrapped in newspaper, and this will keep their catch frozen for and easy 24hr-36hr drive, if the outer layer softens a bit, itís still fine to go in the freezer. Do not pack frozen fish in ice, it will thaw quicker, This would be my recommendation, as fish not properly packaged can go rancid quite quickly. You donít want to put all the expense into getting your catch, only to have it go bad. I see a lot of people bring a freezer, wrap their fish in Saran Wrap, when they get home they have to thaw it, portion it, and re freeze ir... if not done properly your catch wonít last long. I know it can cost a couple hunde dollars to have your catch professionally processed, but a year later you can eat a piece of salmon that tastes like it was caught last week. A one person possession limit of salmon, Ling, halibut,and rockfish, will usually fit in a 150 L cooler. Crab can be a bit bulky, but if a bit extra room is needed, a styrofoam cooler can be picked up for about $25...

Another thing to consider is transport regulations. When your fish is processed at a licensed facility, the fish can be cut up (portioned), and your receipt is all thatís required for transport. If you ďDo it yourself ď, youíll be required to keep fish whole, and separate in order to have species, number of fish, and length verified.

Any questions or suggestions you may have about transport, or pending regulations/changes... feel free to dm me...
This X1
I've seen countless people freeze an entire salmon to transport only to have it sit in a freezer because "what do I do with a whole salmon" or whole fillet...
Having a local fish processor portion, and freeze your catch is the cheapest part of your trip, and the product will taste much better for much longer.
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  #14  
Old 04-01-2021, 03:14 PM
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KGB KGB is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott h View Post
This X1
I've seen countless people freeze an entire salmon to transport only to have it sit in a freezer because "what do I do with a whole salmon" or whole fillet...
Having a local fish processor portion, and freeze your catch is the cheapest part of your trip, and the product will taste much better for much longer.
X2! We had our catch flash frozen(-28) and filled the cooler. Got home 48 hours later- still frozen solid, just a few pieces on a top were a bit soft..
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  #15  
Old 04-01-2021, 03:25 PM
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Oh one more thing- do not use ice on the flash frozen fish, it is way warmer then fish itself and will make a mess.

Last edited by KGB; 04-01-2021 at 03:31 PM.
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  #16  
Old 04-01-2021, 03:41 PM
Scott h Scott h is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KGB View Post
Oh one more thing- do not use ice on the flash frozen fish, it is way warmer then fish itself and will make a mess.
Agree. If there is any space in your cooler just put in newspaper layers and seal the whole unit up. We routinely do this for 36 hour trips and there may be a little thawing on the top layer if it's really hot out.
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  #17  
Old 04-01-2021, 07:13 PM
CDNOutdoorsman CDNOutdoorsman is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by surhuntsalot View Post
Your best setup depends on your travel plans. The process most of my guests use is they take their catch to the local fish processing facility. There their catch is portioned to their liking, flash frozen (very important in preserving freshness), and stored until their departure. Their catch is packed into coolers (styrofoam, or Yeti will all work). The top couple layers are wrapped in newspaper, and this will keep their catch frozen for and easy 24hr-36hr drive, if the outer layer softens a bit, itís still fine to go in the freezer. Do not pack frozen fish in ice, it will thaw quicker, This would be my recommendation, as fish not properly packaged can go rancid quite quickly. You donít want to put all the expense into getting your catch, only to have it go bad. I see a lot of people bring a freezer, wrap their fish in Saran Wrap, when they get home they have to thaw it, portion it, and re freeze ir... if not done properly your catch wonít last long. I know it can cost a couple hunde dollars to have your catch professionally processed, but a year later you can eat a piece of salmon that tastes like it was caught last week. A one person possession limit of salmon, Ling, halibut,and rockfish, will usually fit in a 150 L cooler. Crab can be a bit bulky, but if a bit extra room is needed, a styrofoam cooler can be picked up for about $25...

Another thing to consider is transport regulations. When your fish is processed at a licensed facility, the fish can be cut up (portioned), and your receipt is all thatís required for transport. If you ďDo it yourself ď, youíll be required to keep fish whole, and separate in order to have species, number of fish, and length verified.

Any questions or suggestions you may have about transport, or pending regulations/changes... feel free to dm me...

Follow this advice, this is from a guy that guides for a living...
you can get away with a smaller cooler if the fish is processed at a facility and dont have to transport all the inedible parts...
I will be doing this again this year.

See you at the end of June Travis.
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