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The Complete Guide to Hunting, Butchering, and Cooking Wild Game: Volume 1: Big Game

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A comprehensive big-game hunting guide for hunters ranging from first-time novices to seasoned experts, with more than 400 full-color photographs, including work by renowned outdoor photographer John Hafner   Steven Rinella was raised in a hunting family and has been pursuing wild game his entire life. In this first-ever complete guide to hunting—from hunting an ani A comprehensive big-game hunting guide for hunters ranging from first-time novices to seasoned experts, with more than 400 full-color photographs, including work by renowned outdoor photographer John Hafner   Steven Rinella was raised in a hunting family and has been pursuing wild game his entire life. In this first-ever complete guide to hunting—from hunting an animal to butchering and cooking it—the host of the popular hunting show MeatEater shares his own expertise with us, and imparts strategies and tactics from many of the most experienced hunters in the United States as well.   This invaluable book includes • recommendations on what equipment you will need—and what you can do without—from clothing to cutlery to camping gear to weapons • basic and advanced hunting strategies, including spot-and-stalk hunting, ambush hunting, still hunting, drive hunting, and backpack hunting • how to effectively use decoys and calling for big game • how to find hunting locations, on both public and private land, and how to locate areas that other hunters aren’t using • how and when to scout hunting locations for maximum effectiveness • basic information on procuring hunting tags, including limited-entry “draw” tags • a species-by-species description of fourteen big-game animals, from their mating rituals and preferred habitats to the best hunting techniques—both firearm and archery—for each species • how to plan and pack for backcountry hunts • instructions on how to break down any big-game animal and transport it from your hunting site • how to butcher your own big-game animals and select the proper cuts for sausages, roasts, and steaks, and how to utilize underappreciated cuts such as ribs and shanks • cooking techniques and recipes, for both outdoor and indoor preparation of wild game


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A comprehensive big-game hunting guide for hunters ranging from first-time novices to seasoned experts, with more than 400 full-color photographs, including work by renowned outdoor photographer John Hafner   Steven Rinella was raised in a hunting family and has been pursuing wild game his entire life. In this first-ever complete guide to hunting—from hunting an ani A comprehensive big-game hunting guide for hunters ranging from first-time novices to seasoned experts, with more than 400 full-color photographs, including work by renowned outdoor photographer John Hafner   Steven Rinella was raised in a hunting family and has been pursuing wild game his entire life. In this first-ever complete guide to hunting—from hunting an animal to butchering and cooking it—the host of the popular hunting show MeatEater shares his own expertise with us, and imparts strategies and tactics from many of the most experienced hunters in the United States as well.   This invaluable book includes • recommendations on what equipment you will need—and what you can do without—from clothing to cutlery to camping gear to weapons • basic and advanced hunting strategies, including spot-and-stalk hunting, ambush hunting, still hunting, drive hunting, and backpack hunting • how to effectively use decoys and calling for big game • how to find hunting locations, on both public and private land, and how to locate areas that other hunters aren’t using • how and when to scout hunting locations for maximum effectiveness • basic information on procuring hunting tags, including limited-entry “draw” tags • a species-by-species description of fourteen big-game animals, from their mating rituals and preferred habitats to the best hunting techniques—both firearm and archery—for each species • how to plan and pack for backcountry hunts • instructions on how to break down any big-game animal and transport it from your hunting site • how to butcher your own big-game animals and select the proper cuts for sausages, roasts, and steaks, and how to utilize underappreciated cuts such as ribs and shanks • cooking techniques and recipes, for both outdoor and indoor preparation of wild game

30 review for The Complete Guide to Hunting, Butchering, and Cooking Wild Game: Volume 1: Big Game

  1. 5 out of 5

    BoondocksGlam

    While this is my husband's book, and I didn't read the entire book, it's an extremely well written book. I was most interested in the sections of the book related to breaking down big game as I help with all of the butchering. Many useful tips, I particularly liked the section on showing maximum respect to your prey. While my husband does the cooking, I can attest that the recipes he has tried from this book have been amazing. I'd recommend this book to any big game hunters and also to anyone wh While this is my husband's book, and I didn't read the entire book, it's an extremely well written book. I was most interested in the sections of the book related to breaking down big game as I help with all of the butchering. Many useful tips, I particularly liked the section on showing maximum respect to your prey. While my husband does the cooking, I can attest that the recipes he has tried from this book have been amazing. I'd recommend this book to any big game hunters and also to anyone who butchers or cooks with it even if they don't do the hunting. I'd also encourage those who have been hesitant to try venison, or those who've tried it in the past and not liked it to give it another try using some of these tips and recipes. It makes all the difference if it's cooked properly. As well, there is great satisfaction in knowing where your food comes from and doing it all yourself.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jim Ingerson

    I was interested in this book after I saw the show Meateater and was fortunate enough to receive it as a Christmas gift. In less than two months this book has become very well used - it's my new go-to book on the weekends and while I've only used recipes for my smoker so far, I'm excited to try the rest. This is a great book, written in an easy to follow format, filled with very useful information and tips and I would highly recommend it to any sports enthusiast. I was interested in this book after I saw the show Meateater and was fortunate enough to receive it as a Christmas gift. In less than two months this book has become very well used - it's my new go-to book on the weekends and while I've only used recipes for my smoker so far, I'm excited to try the rest. This is a great book, written in an easy to follow format, filled with very useful information and tips and I would highly recommend it to any sports enthusiast.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kyle Jackson

    The recipe section alone is worth the purchase the rest of the book is equally great but the respect shown to the game through the artful and tasty preparations is the show stopper for me.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Matt Norville

    As a first generation hunter this book helped me harvest a deer and elk my first season. Some topics give just enough information to be dangerous and produce additional questions, but the book is a good general reference. Overall, Rinella goes over the top with practices such as a meatloaf recipe with spinach, pine nuts and 20+ other ingredients... Another subject I question is leaving the bone in a lot of cuts of meat. According to my fellow hunters, friends, and relatives using a hacksaw to ma As a first generation hunter this book helped me harvest a deer and elk my first season. Some topics give just enough information to be dangerous and produce additional questions, but the book is a good general reference. Overall, Rinella goes over the top with practices such as a meatloaf recipe with spinach, pine nuts and 20+ other ingredients... Another subject I question is leaving the bone in a lot of cuts of meat. According to my fellow hunters, friends, and relatives using a hacksaw to make bonein roasts, ribs, etc.. is not a good way to butcher meat. In conclusion, the book is a great overview of big game hunting, but is somewhat ideal in some of the practices preached.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Gregory Pedersen

    This book seems like a definitive work for those who want to know anything and everything about hunting. I've read some of Steven Rinella's other books about hunting and the outdoors, and they are quite enjoyable. Rinella's knowledge comes from decades of hunting experience and studious scholarship pertaining to the subject. I really enjoyed his show Meat Eater as well. This particular book is a how-to guide supplemented by Rinella's direct personal experiences as well as lots of great tried and This book seems like a definitive work for those who want to know anything and everything about hunting. I've read some of Steven Rinella's other books about hunting and the outdoors, and they are quite enjoyable. Rinella's knowledge comes from decades of hunting experience and studious scholarship pertaining to the subject. I really enjoyed his show Meat Eater as well. This particular book is a how-to guide supplemented by Rinella's direct personal experiences as well as lots of great tried and proven recipes for cooking the wild game.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Robert Cox

    Great 30,000ft view of big game hunting. Would be an exceptional book for anyone just starting out, and its actually very readable, I took the cover to cover approach and tore through it very quickly. Look at it this way, its enough to make you dangerous and get you into the woods, most the rest can only come from first hand experience.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Dalton Ayres

    It was a really good book. Some awesome recipes in the back of the book. As far as information, it would be a very good book for a novice Hunter to read. For the more experienced folks, like my self who has hunted all landscapes, and deep in the ecology of animals, you might find yourself skimming most of it. But great book of you still only 10 years into the hunting scene.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Alberto Garcia

    Amazing content This guy describes things the way I imagine them. After I read what he says and my mind starts drawing the picture it clearly makes sense. I love that he takes you on a journey starting from how to prepare and even what to look for. Definitely a must for any hunter out there.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Henry

    Geez I wish that I read this before taking an Aoudad. I would have saved so much more meat. Lessons learned. Will apply to bear in a few days. I most certainly suggest this book to beginners like me and to possibly add something new to a seasoned hunter’s abilities.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Gregory Shaffer Jr

    Fantastic read Enthralled me from the get go. Couldn't put it down. Informational and motivational. Looking forward to trying some of Steve's techniques this season in the field and in the kitchen! Fantastic read Enthralled me from the get go. Couldn't put it down. Informational and motivational. Looking forward to trying some of Steve's techniques this season in the field and in the kitchen!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Victoria Dassen

    Now I'm Hungry Like his Meat Eater TV series, this book brings hunting big game into a realistic perspective. One looking forward to my first hunting experiences, and learning how to put Steven 's advice into practice Now I'm Hungry Like his Meat Eater TV series, this book brings hunting big game into a realistic perspective. One looking forward to my first hunting experiences, and learning how to put Steven 's advice into practice

  12. 5 out of 5

    East To

    Great book with a comprehensive overview of big game hunting gear, techniques, butchering, and cooking - just what it says!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Dude Man

    There is no better mentor for a new hunter and conservationist than Steven Rinella.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ross

    Great book.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Sean

    Seriously good. Thorough, detailed, straight forward and simple. I love this guy’s style.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Devon Simmons

    Excellent book! This is an exceptional resource for the beginner to novice hunter. Very easy to get caught up all night reading.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Megan R

    Great information. Wonderful recipes. And Steven Rinella is an engaging writer.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Matthew

    Great broad overview and basics of big game hunting. A good launching point for digging into more specific materials.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Connor Caler

    I’ll be referencing this book for years to come, I’m sure.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Daniel

    Great hunting tips, especially the tips on hunting the different game species!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Emily Steele

    Comprehensive!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jake Lykins

    Great insights all around for anyone who wants to learn more about hunting, cooking, or even general information regarding big game in the United States!

  23. 5 out of 5

    R.J. Batla

    Must have for hunters Great read, lots of useful information, something every outdoorsman should own at least for reference. Easy to read and informative. Highly recommended.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Dan Simonsen

    Great intro book to Hunting, butchering, and cooking Wild Game (Big Game). Straight forward. I personally liked the straight forward no nonsense approach of discussing where the place places to spend money to get the most result for your dollar (for example--it's okay to hunt in second hand clothes). Steve Rinella's approach is straight forward. The text is easy to read, the pictures are clear and pertinent. The captions are a bit small, or as I now say "in a young person's font," but that is a Great intro book to Hunting, butchering, and cooking Wild Game (Big Game). Straight forward. I personally liked the straight forward no nonsense approach of discussing where the place places to spend money to get the most result for your dollar (for example--it's okay to hunt in second hand clothes). Steve Rinella's approach is straight forward. The text is easy to read, the pictures are clear and pertinent. The captions are a bit small, or as I now say "in a young person's font," but that is a very minor issue. Excellent choice for both the experienced and novice hunter. I received this book via a Goodreads.com giveaway.

  25. 5 out of 5

    James Petzke

    Valuable resource for hunters.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Rowe

    The MeatEater crew did a great job covering all the topics in the best way I could imagine assorting them.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Eric

    Steven Rinella accomplishes a rare feat with this volume to demystify the many facets of big game hunting while encouraging newcomers to the lifestyle. There are some people who give hunting a bad rap - in my experience these have been the minority but they're the braggarts or trophy hunters of endangered species and get the most press. Rinella's position in this book (and his Netflix show, podcast, etc.) is very vocal about first and foremost his love and respect of the natural world. In my opi Steven Rinella accomplishes a rare feat with this volume to demystify the many facets of big game hunting while encouraging newcomers to the lifestyle. There are some people who give hunting a bad rap - in my experience these have been the minority but they're the braggarts or trophy hunters of endangered species and get the most press. Rinella's position in this book (and his Netflix show, podcast, etc.) is very vocal about first and foremost his love and respect of the natural world. In my opinion, that is the single most important aspect on why this is a successful guide. It is not about dominating nature or getting a trophy at the waste of meat - it's about being in harmony with the predator/prey relationship and taking great care to make sure the animal's death was not in vain. There are many considerations to begin hunting in the United States, and the sheer amount of things to approach is a significant barrier to entry. Rinella lays out clearly how to get your foot in the door, from gear to land navigation to hunting permits to how to find good land. He then implores the reader take initiative and responsibility to put these suggestions into practice. It's a welcome teaching guide that doesn't belittle those who are new to it. For anyone interested in starting hunting or interested in seeing a new perspective of hunting in a positive light, I highly recommend this book.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Thomas

    Wow! If there is only one book I would recommend to a hunter of any experience level to have in his/her bookshelf, this is the one. I don't think I've ever seen a book about hunting to well organized, informative, or entertaining. A person can not have had any experience hunting, but pick up this book and get all the basic information needed from start to finish to complete a successful hunting trip. He covers gear, weapons, animals, behavior, tactics, shooting, skinning, butchering, and then pro Wow! If there is only one book I would recommend to a hunter of any experience level to have in his/her bookshelf, this is the one. I don't think I've ever seen a book about hunting to well organized, informative, or entertaining. A person can not have had any experience hunting, but pick up this book and get all the basic information needed from start to finish to complete a successful hunting trip. He covers gear, weapons, animals, behavior, tactics, shooting, skinning, butchering, and then provides some interesting recipes to use for cooking up your hard-earned meat. Even experienced hunters will learn things from this book. The author solicits ideas, stories, tips from other hunters which he includes in each section giving this book more of the feel of hanging out in a hunting camp with a bunch of old pros rather than reading a how-to. Best $18 I've spent in a while!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Ted Ryan

    Not exactly the "complete" guide but good none-the-less. One frustrating thing was many of the pictures, especially the illustrating ones, were not labeled and it was hard at times to know which photo went with what text. I wish the butchering section had been more detailed, I know new hunters such as myself struggle with knowing what to do in the field once the animal is down. I was left with lot of follow-up questions which a "complete" guide should answer. I sound like I am being hard on the b Not exactly the "complete" guide but good none-the-less. One frustrating thing was many of the pictures, especially the illustrating ones, were not labeled and it was hard at times to know which photo went with what text. I wish the butchering section had been more detailed, I know new hunters such as myself struggle with knowing what to do in the field once the animal is down. I was left with lot of follow-up questions which a "complete" guide should answer. I sound like I am being hard on the book, which I am, but I did benefit from it quite a bit. It just left me wanting more. The authors discussed this book on the Meateater podcast (017) and that was very helpful to hear, I reread some sections of the book based on what they talked about.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Brad

    This is the book I wish I would have read first to get a solid foundation for hunting. Highly recommend it for the beginner, novice, and expert. That said, understand that this book attempts to give broad knowledge and know-how of every aspect of the hunt, from planning to putting the meat in the freezer, so some items are covered in broad strokes. Use this book to get the big picture and to gain confidence, but you can only become an expert through your own experience and reading more detailed b This is the book I wish I would have read first to get a solid foundation for hunting. Highly recommend it for the beginner, novice, and expert. That said, understand that this book attempts to give broad knowledge and know-how of every aspect of the hunt, from planning to putting the meat in the freezer, so some items are covered in broad strokes. Use this book to get the big picture and to gain confidence, but you can only become an expert through your own experience and reading more detailed books or watching more videos about specific aspects of the hunting process.

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