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Author Topic: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk  (Read 1850 times)

Offline IslandStorm62

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Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« on: September 30, 2019, 02:38:01 PM »
HI All,
   Is there any meat processing buisness that would store our Deer / Elk  (quarters) to allow them to cool and dry for a few days.  I live in Lacey, WA and unfotunately, I do not have my personal walk-in cooler / refrigerator.

The best I am able to do is empty my "garage" refrigerator and stand my "Deer Quarters" up and allow them to dry / cool for a few days to a week.  Haven't shot an Elk yet, but when I do, I could use a place to hang the quarters.  My guess is that the temperature in the garage fluctuates from 50 - 70 during the fall months, so that obviously will not work.

Back in 1983 when I first started hunting I was stationed on Fort Bragg, NC.  In the past, there was a Rod and Gun Club and they had a large walk-in cooler that hunters could use to hang and cool their game, for a small fee.  It was actually very resonable, if I remeber correctly they only allowed three days, in order to ensure other hunters would have an opportunity to use the space.

Does anyone know of a place that offers this service.   By the way, I enjoy butchering and grinding my own game.

Offline BeerBugler

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2019, 04:36:22 PM »
Gut your garage refrigerator and install some poles and or hangers. Buy a cheap battery operated fan and digital thermometer. This will store an elk no problem, just set the fridge to the highest setting (lowest temp) well before putting the meat in then adjust as needed (about 36 degrees). Some guys add a humidifier and humidity sensor also. Hangers for quarters, wire racks for boned meat, cool temps and circulating air, a little tight but it works.

Offline carvermoe

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2019, 04:40:38 PM »
My house

Offline Platensek-po

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2019, 04:43:09 PM »
“Under no pretext should arms and ammunition be surrendered; any attempt to disarm the workers must be frustrated, by force if necessary.”

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Offline IslandStorm62

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2019, 05:39:23 PM »
Gut your garage refrigerator and install some poles and or hangers. Buy a cheap battery operated fan and digital thermometer. This will store an elk no problem, just set the fridge to the highest setting (lowest temp) well before putting the meat in then adjust as needed (about 36 degrees). Some guys add a humidifier and humidity sensor also. Hangers for quarters, wire racks for boned meat, cool temps and circulating air, a little tight but it works.

Thanks, but even gutted, I dont think my fridge could hold more than than one front and one rear Elk quarter.

Offline dutchmanaz

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2019, 11:04:22 AM »
Lots of religion on both sides of this argument, but I personally see no need to age wild game at all.  Just cool it very well and cut process it the next day.  I've done both methods, and I didn't see the benefit of aging...just made the processing that much more difficult.
Will need a good freezer to freeze it as quick as you can though, or you may have some blood leakage from the packages.

Offline ctwiggs1

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2019, 11:43:34 AM »
Most processors will charge a per hook/per day fee.  I think Olson's in Enumclaw charges $5/10 per hook/per day.  So you could probably get a whole deer on one hook if you do it right... But that could get spendy with an elk.

Offline Skyvalhunter

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2019, 11:49:55 AM »
If now I am saying if it stays cool you should have no problem at all hanging the deer in your garage for a few days to age. Done it many times without any problems and in considerably warmer weather.

Offline Curly

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2019, 12:37:37 PM »
It's pretty cool these days with lows around 40 and highs around 60. Should be okay to hang outside for a few days.  But that said, I'd just process ASAP and not try to age.   :twocents:
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Offline IslandStorm62

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2019, 02:26:25 PM »
Thanks for the input.  I'll start monitoring the temp in garage...If the temps are low enough, I think hanging it in the garage just to cool it down and not having to rush with the butchering should work.  Heck, I plan on keeping the house at 62 degrees (gas is expensive). Maybe I'll just hang it in the dining room and slice a steak of it every day. :EAT:

Offline IslandStorm62

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2019, 02:35:03 PM »
Sounds like you guys aren't necessarily aging your venison as much as you are cooling it.  I hang venison to ripen and age for as much as ten days at ambient temperature.  No refrigeration or cooling required.  The result breaks down the fats and tougher connecting tissues and makes for a stronger flavor, less game like more beef like.

Thanks Macs B, I am sure this works, if the temperature remains constant.  Fluctuations must be an issue.
What do you consider ambient temps? 50's?

Offline The Weazle

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2019, 09:09:40 PM »
I’ve shot a lot of elk and deer, and I never age either of them.  As soon as they are hung, or the next day, I start cutting.  I trim well and use that for dog food, and I make my steak, roast, grind piles.  I then grind what gets ground in 1 and 5 pound bags for ground or sausage respectively, and vacuum seal all steaks and roasts and into the freezer.  I’ve had people who swore they’d never eat game again try mine and beg for more. 
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Offline X-Force

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2019, 09:42:36 PM »
I’ve shot a lot of elk and deer, and I never age either of them.  As soon as they are hung, or the next day, I start cutting.  I trim well and use that for dog food, and I make my steak, roast, grind piles.  I then grind what gets ground in 1 and 5 pound bags for ground or sausage respectively, and vacuum seal all steaks and roasts and into the freezer.  I’ve had people who swore they’d never eat game again try mine and beg for more.

For ground meat aging is a waste of time and trimmings. However, age roasts and steak cuts before cutting and wrapping and you’ll have a marked difference in texture of cuts. After aging a deer a couple years ago I won’t go back.  :twocents:
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Offline jagermiester

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #13 on: October 09, 2019, 09:54:22 AM »
I made a meat locker this year with three walls and an old air conditioner (already had the roof floor and one wall) The rest of the year it will be a nice lockup for storing things. I bought a refrigerator thermostat at Johnstone Supply. The AC compressor turns on at 41 degrees and turns off at 31 degrees or 15 degrees depending on where I put the dial. Everything seems to be working great lots of air flow and the cow I shot last weekend is ageing. There is science behind aging meat my belief  is that it has to be done right and then it is very beneficial.
 
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Offline scrapperdude

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Re: Where Can I (WE) HANG / AGE our Deer or Elk
« Reply #14 on: October 16, 2019, 04:15:44 PM »
I don't see much benefit if any to hanging wild game, quarter it up and start processing away, use extra fridge in garage till you get it done :IBCOOL:

 


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