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Thread: Deer processing after harvest

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Deer processing after harvest

    What do y'all suggest once you got your trophy out the woods.. Do you leave the skin on while your hanging it or do you take the skin off and hang it?? How long do you suggest hanging it or should i just skin and butcher it that same day... reason why i ask this i always hear conflicting stories..some don't like leaving skin on cause it keeps heat in and has oils that make the meat gamey? I also herd sawing threw bone while butchering or field harvesting will cause a gamey taste as well... or is this all bro talk advice I'm getting?...... bow hunting deer by the way

  2. #2
    CTHS Supporter passinthru63's Avatar
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    Sep 2009
    Northeast, CT
    Some of this depends on your circumstances and schedule. I prefer to skin it right away - just easier to me. Letting it hang all depends on my schedule and the weather - nothing to do with anything else. Early season I usually jump on butchering it right away or at least get it broken down into manageable pieces (put in the fridge) and work on the final butchering as time allows. I debone everything so very little sawing going on. Been doing it this way for over 20 years.
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  3. #3
    8 Point
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  4. #4
    Super Moderator Deadeye Logun S16 Champion, Backyard Shootout Champion TooManyHobbies's Avatar
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    Oct 2009
    I skin ASAP and get it in cooler. Especially in early (warm) season.
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  5. #5
    10 Point Mallard870's Avatar
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    Aug 2014
    Northeastern CT
    I pretty much do the same thing as passinthru mentioned. The only time I hang deer for a prolonged amount of time is once temperatures get down to just below 40 degrees and holds steadily. I've hear that deer that has been hung for a longer amount of time tastes better/more tender but I've never really noticed. Since I don't have a walk in cooler or access to one and the temperatures fluctuate so much in New England I usually play it safe and quarter the deer and throw it in totes in the fridge. I will say that the longer you hang a skinned deer, the more surface of the meat you will have to trim off that has dried and blackened.

  6. #6
    14 pointer MTN_Infantry's Avatar
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    Aug 2012
    Northeast, CT
    Kill a few deer and try different ways. You'll find what works for you and you like best

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  7. #7


    You should hang up the deer, then proceed to skin it
    will not have big problem with aging meats and bones, but with the internal organs you need to clean them before putting them in a ice box for storage and take it home
    You can refer to this article
    How to Butcher Process a Deer After the Kill
    I think it will be useful to you

  8. #8
    10 Point Mountain man's Avatar
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    Nov 2014
    North east of the south west
    I've had venison that was hung for over 1 week and I've had venison that wasn't hung at all. I cant honestly say I felt there was a noticeable difference. Biggest impact on quality is how its cooked as far as I'm concerned. That said, if conditions permit, I will hang a deer in my barn for at least several days prior to the butchering. It doesn't hurt and I get to look at it longer.
    That said, I do firmly believe that meat needs to rest for 1 day minimum prior to putting it in the freezer or eating it.

  9. #9
    Check out, it has a small little guide to processing the deer.

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