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How do you guys and gals like to field dress out a deer?

Discussion in 'Hunting, Fishing & Camping' started by gorwilla, Oct 25, 2013.

  1. rhino673


    Feb 7, 2010
    Good post. I do basically the same thing with a few differences .
    I always carry zip ties with me to close off the esophagus and intestine .
    I have used a bunch of knives in the past but I tend to stick with a shorter bladed knife about 3.5 to 4 inches at most.
    My axe is a fiskars x7
  2. Ben B

    Ben B

    Feb 28, 2012
    this never gets old. If I tried it, it would look like I got in a fight with Edward Scissor hands.

    [ame=""]Peach Orchard Deer Processing-David Skinning a deer in under two minutes!! - YouTube[/ame]

  3. smokeross

    smokeross GTDS Member #49

    May 15, 2011
    Lay it on it's back. Skin the wiener back (unless it's a doe, LOL). Split the hide from the crotch to the brisket. You can take everything from the diaphragm back by cutting the liver loose and going from there, or you can slice oput the diaphragm and reach in past the heart and lungs and cut the wind pipe and start pulling. I usually leave the rectum in till I get back to where I an going to hang it, but not always.
    The method where you leave the heart, lungs and diaphragm in would be if you are in a hurry. LOL Don't know why you would need to hurry (game warden) but I used to be able to field dress a Blacktail buck in less than 2 minutes. I was timed on a forked horn once at 1 1/2 minutes.
    I have gutted over 30 moose now, and I can tell you that is a job. The gut pile will outweigh most deer on the hoof.
  4. Thomasc18

    Thomasc18 NRA Life Member

    Mar 6, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2013
  5. Dennis in MA

    Dennis in MA Get off my lawn

    Aug 16, 2001
    Taunton, MA
    With or without veggie-oil chain saw? :rofl:
  6. vtbluegrass


    Dec 1, 2009
    Knife in an old Case 4" kinda general purpose drop point. I have been carrying latex gloves with me in the field for awhile now and it makes clean up quicker after you are done.

    Deer on back and remove udder or pecker
    Insert knife under tail and use pelvis as a guide to trace out b-hole
    Split from pelvis to sternum
    Pull back liver and slice both sides of diaphragm
    Reach up with one hand and grab find and grab esophagus and cut the loose
    Pull in all out and start dragging

    I like to hang deer if its cold enough or butcher asap. First time I saw people doing the sitting in a cooler of ice water for days I thought they were insane and still kind of do.
  7. Gills63


    Sep 26, 2012
    Gerber makes a nice two piece set. One is a bone saw the other is a blade with a cut hook. Its the only way to go. Look for the ones with the T handles, prevents a cold or slippery hand from sliding forward onto the blade.

    Sent from my XT907 using Ohub Campfire mobile app
  8. cowboywannabe

    cowboywannabe you savvy?

    Jan 26, 2001
    the guy in post 22 is pretty damn good! it takes me about 15 minutes to do that but I always pulled the skin off and cut it differently. I think I will try his method next time, looked a lot easier.
  9. Tvov


    Sep 30, 2000
    Here's a good, basic, and slowly done video for beginners (like me!):

    [ame=""]FIELD DRESSING, SKINNING, BUTCHERING to FREEZER - Large Game Processing - Deer - YouTube[/ame]
  10. Jeremy_K


    Apr 6, 2009
    Anyone else use the ice in the cooler method after quartering? The way they described it in a Youtube video I watched was that they use kosher salt and ice water and drain the bloody water once per day until it runs clear. I quartered my last deer up and tried a speedy method of this but instead of days, I did it over the course of several hours. I know the salt water draws the blood out pretty good but it also browned the edges of the meat which I don't know if that's good or not. I normally quarter them and hack and grind them up ,then vac seal them. Just wondering the benefits of icing them for a few days.
  11. field dress = remove guts


    knife, axe/hatchet if i have it. open it up and pull out guts. axe to break open pelvic bone and go up rib cage to make it easier.

    butchering is another thread.
  12. Hummer

    Hummer Big Member

    Mar 16, 2003
    Western Colorado

    Yes and no. Field dressing may involve different levels of completeness depending on the circumstance. In warmer weather or longer packouts, field dressing may require skinning, and/or cutting into 4 to 6 or more packable sections, removing the head and lower legs, packing in cloth sacks and hanging in a tree to air cool before packout. This is the field dress stage, not butchering.

    In most areas of the west you can't often get to an animal with any vehicle, and game carts are seldom useable because of rocks, logs and narrow trails. That means you backpack it out, or use horses or mules. If you backpack any distance, removing the bones saves weight. That's especially important with elk where the bones can add 40 lbs. to the packout.

    In western big game hunting for deer, pronghorn and especially elk, the gutless method is taking hold. It works well to first skin the animal, remove and bag the backstraps and legs, and any other meat from the neck, brisket and ribs. No saw or axe is needed, only a good knife.

    Once the hide and legs are off the carcass it is much easier to move around, especially with elk which can weigh 700+ lbs. on the hoof. Then you can remove the guts to access the tenderloins, heart and liver. A big advantage is eliminating contamination of the meat because it isn't exposed to the evicera. It makes sense to remove the majority of the meat before opening the belly.

  13. Jay S.

    Jay S.

    Sep 1, 2004
    The Deep South
    I do this but without the salt. I'll usually leave it in the cooler for 3-4 days and then have it all ground up into jalapeño and cheese sausage. Also garlic and cheese and green onion and cheese. Man I'm getting hungry now!
  14. Jack Ryan

    Jack Ryan

    Apr 6, 2013
    Fillet knife and a tomahawk.

    If I don't have a tomahawk, I cut saw teeth in the back of my fillet knife. Last choice would be to cut around the butt and pull it through the pelvic bone.
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2013