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Remington725,
Originally Posted by scottishkat
Sounds like you have a good long season to hunt em. I heard somewhere you had a big birthday if you're gonna hunt moose at your age you've earned it. My one and only moose I was in my 20's and 3\4 of mile from a road. My dad was in his early 50's said "son what's wrong with you". Harvested with his 3030 he said "that gun's to small for moose hunting". I loved rifle back then and said "I could shoot an elephant with this".

I remember removing the guts, I took her left hind hind leg proped it behind an alder. Made the first incision the leg came off the alder and hit me in back of head. I said "well this isn't a deer" It was a really big day, fun all over after "bang".

My Lord was I that unintelligent?

After living through that experience and now being just a few years your junior. Sounds like you have an adventure coming up.

Best of luck to you sir.

Good luck and shoot straight y'all

Yeah, I have a big birthday with a zero four days after the last day of the rifle season--which is over two months from now, so no big rush. Plus, there's a 9-day "traditional muzzleloader season" in the middle of December.

I've had plenty of not-so-fun moose experiences already. My first was a good-sized Alaskan bull that was standing on top of the high bank of a med-sized salmon river, probably 50 yards from the water. Shot it through the top of the heart (as it turned out) with my .338 Winchester Magnum and a 230-grain Winchester Fail Safe. The bull stood up on its hind legs, then fell over backward, rolling down the bank onto the wide gravel bar below. Thought it was all over--but then the bull suddenly got up and staggered into the river, whereupon the guide shouted, "Don't shoot him in the water!"

So I didn't, even though the water was only ankle deer right there. But the moose kept floundering across the river, which of course got deeper, and died in the deepest part of the channel. The only thing visible was the tip of one antler tine.

I grabbed the bowline of the guide's jet-boat, then waded out there in my hip boots and managed to get a loop around the antler. We towed it with the boat downstream to a shallower riffle, then spent the next five hours taking the bull apart from the top down. Every time we got a good chunk off, we'd grab the antlers and jerk the bull a few more inches toward the shore. This was early September and we spent the entire time in a cloud of mosquitoes.

Toward the end, the guide said, "Every time something like this happens I swear I'm never going moose hunting again--but after a few years forget!"


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Thanks,I was going to check on that!


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Congrats John. I've shot one Moose in Alaska and the meat was excellent and I brought every bit of it back. I did have to pay excess baggage charges.
We don't have a Moose season here in Michigan but we do have Elk. A bull tag is a once in a lifetime drawing. I drew a cow tag in 2001 and had to wait 10 years IIRC before I was eligible to apply again. I've been putting in for either sex since and no luck but like you I keep applying and maybe I'll get lucky once again.
I have that big birthday with the zero in it just as you do the end of October. We just need to keep on keepen on LOL

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Yep, moose meat is usually excellent! Have heard mature bulls can get a little sub-par during the peak of the rut, but we've been lucky and gotten all of our in early September or November. (I also got very lucky with my Alaskan bull. Delta Airlines in Dillingham checked the meat through as baggage, no charge--but that was in 1996....)

I don't have very good luck at drawing tags or permits, anywhere! Good luck in the bull elk draw.

John


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I had that same birthday in January. The zero’s not so bad, but that seven in front of it’s a bitch!


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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Yep, moose meat is usually excellent! Have heard mature bulls can get a little sub-par during the peak of the rut,

Glad you got what you wanted.............

I drew a WY moose tag for the back side of the Tetons,on my 1st try & killed an older bull that was chasing a cow when I shot him......................absolutely the toughest wild game I've ever tried to eat, even the tenderloins. Just like shoe leather, couldn't get done chewing it. Made dog food out of most of it.

On the other hand, some of the best meat I've had was other moose meat.

You just never know.

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Interesting! Thanks for the info.

That variation in wild game is exactly what my wife Eileen's big game "cookbook", Slice of the Wild, is all about. They're not cookie-cutter animals like corn-fed steers. Instead each animal is an individual, and the toughness, taste and hence cooking methods depend not just on the individual animal but field-care. Which is why the first 2/3 of the book are about all those things, before even getting to the 100 recipes.

What I'm wondering is whether your bull moose was "aged" very long before butchering. The first moose Eileen ever helped butcher was a big bull--but taken during late November, well after the rut. But the guy who killed it only waited until the carcass cooled before butchering, and the meat Eileen got was very tough.

We have aged big bull elk for at least two weeks before butchering, and while not as tender as younger elk, they were pretty chewable when cooked correctly.


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This is something I have been learning about and have had to improvise with keeping meat cool for any prolonged period of time. Being in Texas, we rarely get nights, let alone weeks with temperatures cool enough to age meat by hanging the carcass in a barn or the garage. Most often my main concern after killing an animal is getting the animal cleaned, quartered and on ice. Yes, you could use a walk in cooler, but not everyone has those. I wish I did I that’s for sure.

In recent years I have been reading about aging and this year I’ve learned and experimented with keeping the meat on the bone through a full rigor cycle; at least a day or more. Given the warm temperatures here, The tenderloins and backstraps always been the first to come off the animal, typically while the animal is still warm. Now I leave them on the spine/rib cage through rigor.

For aging I leave the meat on ice in a cooler. I fill milk jugs and freeze them and cycle them out with the meat, keeping the ice fresh and while the meat drains, about a week or so is what I tried this year. I tried this with 2 bucks (both mature and rutting) and my elk last year (young bull) and the meat has been the best all around meat since I’ve been hunting and butchering my own game. I also salt my venison well when it comes out of the freezer and allow it more time to drain and get to room temperature before cooking.

I killed my first deer 25 years ago and I am only now learning so much about the fine art of butchering and aging the meat. It has been a fun and rewarding process. My wife liked the elk so much she’s not too upset about me leaving this November to hopefully go find another one.

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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
What I'm wondering is whether your bull moose was "aged" very long before butchering.

Only about 4 days as I recall.

It was cold with snow & he was cooled out quickly as well.

He looked to have been fighting as he had a horn puncture hole in his forehead & was in a fast rot as he was actively chasing a cow when I shot him so maybe a little pumped up as well.

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Originally Posted by MontanaMan
[

Only about 4 days as I recall.

It was cold with snow & he was cooled out quickly as well.

One of the interesting things about game meat (and domestic meat) is that getting "cooled out quickly" isn't necessarily good. In fact, cooling too quickly can make meat tougher. In fact, if it freezes within 24 hours, it becomes MUCH tougher--and doesn't respond as well to conventional tenderizing techniques like pot-roasting or stewing.

In fact the latest research advises not to allow the meat of freshly-killed large animals (whether domestic or wild) to cool even anywhere close to freezing within 24 hours. Will have to check on that again to get the right temp....


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Our deer season for firearms starts November 15 and with different seasons such as muzzle-loader (although where I hunt I can use a rifle during this season) and late doe season I can hunt through January 1st. We let them hang for a week or so, sometimes they freeze solid especially in December but by thawing slowly we haven't had any tough venison.
I'm looking forward to trying some of Eileen's recipes.

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Could the lack of moose sign have anything to do with the wolf population? Properly aging meat is the trick to quality. Wet aging for 10 days or dry aging for 15 for game animals with some fat cover is ideal. Beef with good fat cover needs 20+ days. Best beef steaks for taste and tenderness that I've ever had were aged 34 days and had mold growing on the cover.


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Best Wishes John!


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Originally Posted by TrueGrit
Could the lack of moose sign have anything to do with the wolf population? Properly aging meat is the trick to quality. Wet aging for 10 days or dry aging for 15 for game animals with some fat cover is ideal. Beef with good fat cover needs 20+ days. Best beef steaks for taste and tenderness that I've ever had were aged 34 days and had mold growing on the cover.

While no doubt wolves have an impact on moose around here, there aren't nearly as many as in other parts of the state--and there were plenty of moose just recently, long after wolves showed up in the area in the 1990s. But we recently had one really tough winter, and a couple years ago at least 4 moose were road-killed in the bottom of the valley, where much of the best moose habitat exists along the Missouri River and its channels. A major highway runs alongside and sometimes even through that habitat--and in fact my wife and I almost ran into a cow maybe a quarter-mile from town one evening.

We are quite familiar with aging meat, partly because I started studying it back in college, as part of being a wildlife biology major. But aging game meat is far more complex than aging beef, both because the animals vary considerably, and so do the conditions they're killed in.

As an example, pronghorn meat basically doesn't need any aging, because the aging process primarily breaks down the collagen in muscle cells. --which is mostly what makes meat tough. Collagen tends to increase in muscles in MOST animals as they get older, but not in pronghorn.

One study I came across back then was from the University of Wyoming, which has one of the best meat-research departments in the country. They compared the meat of old pronghorn bucks with 6-month-old domestic lambs, using a "shear test," a very sharp knife blade connected to a pressure-gauge. The meat from the older pronghorns sliced just as easily (and sometimes easier) than the lamb meat. But meat in older deer--whether whitetails, mule deer, elk, moose or whatever--does tend to get tougher as they get older, due to increasing collagen.

In fact, Eileen and I have conducted plenty of aging tests (including a more primitive version of a "shear test") over the decades. Which is why the first third of her big game "cookbook," SLICE OF THE WILD, is about meat before it gets to the table, including information on aging--and cooling, which as I mentioned in an earlier post on this thread can be overdone, resulting in tougher meat that can't be tenderized by aging. This section also includes several pages of photos of various animals we've taken over the decades, and captions about how they were treated in the field and back home to result in the best meat possible from that particular animal--and not just through aging the meat.


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Originally Posted by Brad
Best Wishes John!

Thanks, Brad!

It just so happens that yesterday a friend who was driving through the area happened to see a cow moose near the road--and it happened to be in the area where Eileen's friend Alison, the wife of the local game biologist, says the landowners are amenable to giving permission to moose hunters. Am going to try to contact them today.


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Mule Deer;
Good afternoon John, I trust that you and Eileen are well and you're getting decent weather down there.

We're cooling off at night now - was -1°C this morning when I made a firewood run up onto the mountain behind the house. That was at about 4000' I'm guessing?

Anyways not that you don't know this, but in our part of the world hitting moose or feral horses in a vehicle seems to result in very poor outcomes.

A chap I know used to work at an RV manufacturing plant here in the valley and was picking up some extra side money driving motor homes to dealers around the province.

For reasons I can't recall at present, he had to make a delivery of a special ordered motor home - these were Class C type too by the way - to a dealer in Prince George and it was in winter.

This guy was the world's unluckiest person in many ways and of course about 10 minutes shy of Prince George he hit a cow moose which totaled the motor home right smartly.

While it's a sample of one and all that John, he did mention that the motor home killed the moose faster than he'd killed them with his '06....

Good luck on your hunt again too for sure, as you know about me there's few things I enjoy more than moose meat.

All the best to you both on all your hunts this fall.

Dwayne


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Originally Posted by GSPfan
Our deer season for firearms starts November 15 and with different seasons such as muzzle-loader (although where I hunt I can use a rifle during this season) and late doe season I can hunt through January 1st. We let them hang for a week or so, sometimes they freeze solid especially in December but by thawing slowly we haven't had any tough venison.
I'm looking forward to trying some of Eileen's recipes.

Good information, John. I was not aware of this. I prize my game meat, since tags are now infrequent here, and I want it the best it can be.


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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
After applying for 40+ years, finally drew a Montana moose tag. It's for a cow, which is what I applied for, since Eileen and have 4 bull racks crowding our limited space already. (She didn't draw this year, after already having drawn a bull tag the first time she applied in 1989--when she got exactly the bull she wanted on opening morning--a 34" meat bull. And then she drew an antlerless tag in 2007, which she filled three miles from the house,)

Am far more interested in moose meat than antlers these days....

Congrats!!!!! That's Awesome!!!


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There is hope!

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