Store-bought field dressing kits often include a bunch of unnecessary items to jack up the price. You might have to go out and buy the newest and greatest hunting knife, but that’s just about it. Most of the stuff you’re going to need is already in your kitchen cabinets. Not only do you already have most of the items, they all fit into a compact gallon size Ziploc bag. With a little bit of prep you won’t be missing anything this hunting season.
How to Pack a Field Dressing Kit
This DIY field dressing Kit should have just about everything you need successfully got it deer. Everything you need should fit inside gallon size Ziploc bag and be ready to transport into the woods. Everyone has their own preference on knives so I won’t really get into all that. If you’re looking for a good field dressing knife, you can’t go wrong with the Basic Gerber Field Dress Kit. You get a great pair of Gerber knives that are both sturdy and come at an affordable price point. Everything else you need should be available in your kit.
Everything You Need To Gut a Deer
1. Deer Drag
You’re going to need it deer drag if you want to have any chance of pulling your buck out of the woods. There are a few commercial deer drags on the market that take out a lot of the work. With the Hunters Specialties Deluxe Deer Drag you can use your entire body to pull out the deer, not just your arms. The hunters specialties deer drag system might make things easier, but you don’t really need it. For centuries hunters have been pulling out deer by their antlers using nothing more than a basic rope.
Instead of buying it commercial drag system go out to your garage and look for a sturdy rope. All you need is about 8 foot of 9 mm climbing rope to get the job done. Just slip a loop around the does neck or the bucks antlers and tie the other end around the stick for a handle. If you start to get tired tie the rope around her waist and drag it using your whole upper body.
2. Latex Gloves
You might be a lifelong hunter, but that doesn’t mean you want to touch all that nasty nest involved in gutting a deer. Surgeons don’t go in barehanded so why should you. Bring along a pair of sturdy latex gloves to keep the blood and guts away from you. Lots of commercial field dressing Kits include gloves to go up all the way to your armpits, but that’s probably unnecessary. You aren’t birthing a cow so you probably don’t need more than a basic wrist length glove. They’ll keep blood away from your clothing and any open cuts while maintaining your dexterity. You should have a better feel and grip allowing you to prevent unnecessary accidents.
3. Butt Out Tool
There’s nothing I can really say about the butt out tool other than the fact that it really works. I’ve had one of these tools for years and they really make disconnecting the anal alimentary canal easy. It takes what should be a gross and disgusting project and makes it simple. As the name implies all you have to do is insert this tool into the anal cavity give it a twist and pull it out. In under a minute you’ll have this gross project behind you.
4. Hand Sanitizer and Paper Towels
If you didn’t need hand sanitizer before you definitely did after pulling out the anal cavity. Bring along a small container of Purell and some paper towels will go a long way. Not only will it clean you up, it seriously helps remove all those gross thoughts from your head. Whatever you do don’t forget to bring along some paper towels because no matter how careful you are will probably get a little blood on your clothes. Nobody wants a massive bloodstain on their brand-new hunting jacket the cost an arm and a leg.
Paracord is like the survivalist duct tape there are so many great uses for it out in the field. I always bring along about a 5 foot length of cord to help me hold stuff out of the way. Tying legs out of the way will definitely save you some sanity on those difficult cuts.
6. Small First Aid Kit
You don’t need to bring along everything from your bathroom medicine cabinet, but a few basic first-aid supplies are always a good idea. I don’t know if it’s just the fact that I’m clumsy or impatient but I always seem to manage to knick myself somehow while gutting a deer. A couple Band-Aids and a small Ziploc of ibuprofen go a long way out in the field.
7. ZipLock Bags
Bring along at least three extra gallon size Ziploc bags. One of the bags is going to be used a haul out all your field dressing supplies and the other two will hold the heart and liver.
8. Gut Hook
Gut hooks aren’t always necessary depending on what kind of hunting knife your using. Knives like in the Gerber Field Dressing Kit listed above are already going to have a gut hook attached. That being said, using a knife based gut hook is going to be a lot harder than a purpose built gut hook. For the past couple years I’ve been using one of the Buck Knives purpose built gut hooks and there’s no going back. You can get a lot more torque on the knife without having to worry about cutting your hand. It gives you a lot of piece of mind when your adrenaline is pumping from taking that monster buck.
What Else Do You Need in Your Field Dressing Kit?
If there’s one thing that hunting teaches you is that you only ever learn from experience. I’m sure that there’s a ton of gear that you will decide you can’t live without. Normally I pack my truck with just about everything else under the sun. Anything that I could possibly need in the field I store in one of those giant Tupperware containers in the back of my truck. Every year I add a little bit of gear to the container and know exactly where it is come hunting season. At your truck make sure you stash a 5 gallon jug of water for rinsing out the body cavity and a hatchet if you want to open up the pelvis.