When I was a small girl, I remember going to my uncle s property to hunt deer, turkey, dove, quail, etc with my family. I loved being out in the woods, running free, watching the wildlife. My dad would take me to hunting camp, despite the comments from the older members; dad would put me in the woods with my grandfather s Smith & Wesson model 1000 shotgun and say, sit still and good luck! I only ever shot one doe, and we never found her¦I was heart broken.
As the years went by, the family grew apart. I found myself driving my very old Grandfather to hunting camp, just so I could get another chance at another deer. No Luck, I grew older as did the relatives, and there was no one to take me hunting, but you could always find me outdoors either at the horse shows or at the mud hole, which is where I met my husband of 19 years.
Bryan has been a hunter all his life and we kicked it off immediately. We married, had a son and moved to North Carolina and had our second son. Bryan joined a Hunting club in Georgia, that we are still apart of to this day. It was at this club with my husband, that I really learned how to hunt. I was taught how to watch and let the deer get closer and where to put a stand, etc. I harvested my first doe on that club, weighing in at 120 lbs, while my husband sat in the truck with the boys watching a clear cut. That was it, I was really hooked! No, I wasn t the first woman in camp to hunt, but I was the first to hunt as hard as the men do. Sure, I have heard the same questions over the years; How do you do it? My only answer to that was How can you not? The woods are my sanctuary. Things always seem clear when I m in the woods. And I have seen some wonderful things in the woods!
Over the years, I have harvested some nice deer and I m always proud of whatever I do harvest. I hunt Alligator, Turkey, Deer, Ducks, Coyotes, Fox and Bobcat. I am open to try anything once. I fly fish in the spring and summer months but hunting is always on my mind.
I have been married for 19 years to my hunting mentor lol, Bryan. We have two sons, Bryan Jr. and Boone. Bryan Jr. is currently in the Navy and fishes and duck hunts with us when he takes leave. Boone is in the woods and water with us all the time and has become quite the hunter. I know a lot of other ladies that hunt hard like me and I love meeting other lady hunters.
Jennifer L. Metzker
See the original article at CampWildGirls.com
Holly A. Heyser, hunting blogger and college lecturer
I am pretty much the last person anyone “ including myself “ would have expected to take up hunting. I was born in Southern California and have spent all of my adult life in urban areas. After college, I spent 19 years as a newspaper reporter and editor (Orange County Register, San Jose Mercury News, St. Paul Pioneer Press, Virginian-Pilot, Sacramento Bee) before leaving the business in 2006 to teach journalism at my alma mater, California State University, Sacramento. Reporter. Professor.
Urbanite. Not someone you think of as a gunner.
But I have always craved unusual experiences, and hunting started worming its way into my realm of possibility back when I was in my late 30s. I was living in St. Paul, Minnesota, with my boyfriend Hank Shaw, and we were both working for the St. Paul Pioneer Press. We had befriended the hunting and fishing writer there “ Chris Niskanen “ and what he did was really piquing Hank s interest. One day Hank announced that he wanted to take up hunting. That s fine, I said. He s a cook, so I knew he d eat what he d kill, which was my threshold of acceptance for hunting.
He was really getting into it, spending a lot of time out in the woods, and pretty soon he started asking if I d like to join him. I didn t, because I was busy training for marathons at that point, and I rightfully concluded that I couldn t fit two activities that intense into my weekends. But a couple years later we moved to Sacramento, and I stopped running, and I finally said I was ready to join him. My first hunt was a pheasant hunt, but what really grabbed me was duck hunting. Half of the ducks in the Pacific Flyway spend their winter in the Sacramento Valley about an hour north of us, and the duck hunting can be amazing. I will hunt anything that I m willing to eat “ pheasants, turkeys, wild boar, deer “ but there s just something about ducks. They re fast, the marshy terrain is challenging and the worse the weather, the better the hunting. I love a challenge. And ducks taste divine. Duck is by far my favorite meat, followed closely by wild boar.
I very quickly dedicated myself to my new pursuit. I had just started my teaching job and was overjoyed when I realized my winter break covered the last six weeks of duck season, so when Hank was working, I d drive up to one of my favorite wildlife refuges and head out into the marsh myself, determined to teach myself how to actually hit these birds. (Three years later, I m sorta kinda getting the hang of it.)
A year to the day after I fired my shotgun for the first time ever, I started a blog about hunting, NorCal Cazadora (www.norcalcazadora.com). NorCal stands for Northern California, and cazadora is Spanish for huntress. I figured no one would care what a novice hunter had to say, but boy was I wrong. I quickly found that even the most veteran hunters enjoyed the frustration-filled tales of trying to learn how to do this hunting stuff right. Since, then, I ve expanded a bit and have begun writing for magazines including California Waterfowl, Delta Waterfowl and Turkey Country, and I ve done quite a few hunting stories for the Sacramento Bee, which has shown amazing openness to hunting.
I ve also taken up photography, and do a lot of food photos for my boyfriend, who started a blog shortly after I did “ Hunter Angler Gardener Cook (www.honest-food.net) “ and writes for a variety of food magazines. I ll be doing photography for his upcoming book as well.
Writing and photography has opened many doors. I ve begun doing a lot of volunteer work for California Waterfowl, which graciously honored me with its Artemis Award this year. And I ve made friends all over the country and world, which means if I can afford a plane ticket someplace, I could probably find someone to hunt with there. I feel incredibly blessed.
Probably the biggest blessing, though, is having been able to enter the hunting world in the first place. I was not naÃ¯ve about where food came from before I started hunting “ I spent some time in the country as a kid, and my family raised a lot of animals for meat. But participating in food, nature and the cycle of life at this level has been a revelation, and it has improved both what I eat and how much I appreciate it exponentially. So many things had to fall into place to get me here: meeting Hank, moving to Minnesota, befriending Chris. There are any number of different choices I could have made that would have put me on a different path. But I got lucky, and I m incredibly grateful for that.
See the original article at CampWildGirls.com
There are two things in Northern WI that you will never change. Rifle season is Holy week and, we love the Green Bay Packers. So the year that we got the word that Brett Favre was coming to camp, it was like a dream come true for our hunting crew.
It started off as a usual hunting season. Our group is to big to house in one place, so the Adermans and the Koels, stay at their shack (a.k.a the Happy Family Cabin) which is just down the road from our shack (a.k.a. my aunts basement). The rest of the guys i.e. the two Patko families, live in the area and stay at their homes. On the Friday before season, it is a tradition that we all converge on the Happy Family Cabin to have a few beers, (third thing about WI, we love beer) catch up on what everyone has been doing throughout the year, and strategize about where we will be going the next morning. We generally hunt on land that is owned by Butch Johnson of Johnson Timber and Futurewood, and it adjoins the Summit Lake Game Farm which is also owned by Johnson.
6:00 p.m. rolls around and the people in the crew start arriving. The regular banter is going on and guys/gals are greeting each other. The noise level is at a dull roar. Hunters/Huntresses are almost giddy as the season starts the next. The young guys are scrapping in the yard and burning off some of the extra energy they have. There s lots of handshakes and backslapping going on. It is the normal, total chaotic transition, but everyone loves it. We have waited an entire year for this week.
By now, everyone that is old enough, has found their favorite flavor of beer (another thing about WI we love our beer) and is settling in for the big discussion. It most always starts out the same way each year. Someone, out of respect, starts by asking the Grey Beards, where they would like to start in the morning. They usually defer to the younger, 40 something salt and pepper group, stating they are just glad to be in the woods and don t really care. DJ Aderman, President for Futurewood Corp, a division of Johnson Timber, normally gives the status on the land that adjoins the perimeter of Summit Lake Game Farm, and what parts we are permitted to hunt on, what is expected of us, and what they have been seeing throughout the fall. This year, he had a unmistakably mischievous grin on his face and little twinkle in his eye that could not go undetected.
He started out giving us his diclaimer, and the following news. I can t say for sure, but there is a chance, that Brett Favre, Mark Chamura, and Jeff Dellenbach of the Green Bay Packers, as well as WI Gov. Tommy Thompson, may be hunting at Summit Lake after the Packer/Viking game on Sunday. He went on to say, that Butch Johnson, the owner of Summit Lake Game Farms and Johnson Timber, is probably going to invite us to do some drives in the farm area and meet the guys. However it cannot be made public until after it happens.
At first we were simply stunned. Sitting ther silently wondering, is he joking? Then all hell broke loose, every adult in the room turn into a little kid, chattering and gigling about the news we had received. Unbelievable, we are going to get to meet Brett Favre and hunt with him. I don t know who was more excited, the kids or the Grey Beards! I do know, however, that nobody slept and it dang near killed everyone not to tell!
Season continued, and we did our usual hunting, harvesting several nice bucks and waiting for the big day to arrive. Finally, we get the word that they would like us to be there on Tuesday.
Monday night I know nobody slept again . Tuesday morning we headed down to Summit Lake. It is about a twenty minute ride from where we meet in the morning. We arrived very early, with our parade of 8 or so 4 wheel drive pickup trucks, to the parking lot at the Summit Lake game farm. We stood around in nervous silence pacing or kicking stones with our feet. We felt like bunch of little kids waiting to see Santa. In the meantime DJ checked went into the lodge to check out the situation. One of the guys looked at me with a very confused look and said Are you wearing¦make-up? something that was unusual for me while hunting. I retorted back, Of course I am, are you stupid! We are going to meet Brett Favre! That started the others rolling and seemed to beak the tension a bit.
My sister Lori and I went in first and were introduced to Favre, Dellenbach and Thompson. Chamura had been injured and had to leave to go to physical therapy. Favre s hair was a mess and he was wearing jeans and a shirt with cut off sleeves. He looked just like anyone else would, in the morning, at hunting camp. (This was back in his drinking days and they had gone out on the town the night before, but that is a whole different story).
We started chatting with him and what amazed me immediately,was that he was just an ordinary guy, just joking around. (Except that he is Brett and he is gorgeous! Lol) Everyone then walked out to the parking lot and Brett was introduced to the rest of the crew. Mysteriously people had Packer shirts and souvenir with them, stuffed in pockets and behind truck seats, and he graciously signed them. We took lots of group photos and joked around for a short time.
Brett and the other guys were loaded up in trucks and SUV s to go out to the stands, while we did drives on the property to encourage the deer to head their direction for the remainder of the day. After a fun day of hunting we headed back to the lodge. The only one that had had a successful deer hunt was Favres agent, and he took a doe.
Brett s hair still a mess, he was now in a blaze orange jacket and was chowing on, as he put it some pretty good dingle-berry pie. There were lots of snacks and more WI beverages while we all sat around and listened to, or told stories about the hunt. It was pretty much like every other night after hunting hours only way different! Brett listened and laughed and told his stories right along with the rest of us.
Soon the local game warden arrived. She had heard that Favre was there so she just happened to stop by to check the game tags on deer and register them. She also wanted her picture taken with the quarterback and he obliged. He would not however wear the handcuff she asked him to wear. As he was standing there just after the picture, he turned and looked straight-faced at one of the guys and said Hey Roscoe, what did you do with that bear you shot today? He knew full well it is illegal to take a bear during deer season and that the warden would start questioning the poor guy!
Well the whole group including Brett, errupted in a fit of laughter, while Roscoe sat there stammering and stuttering and trying to explain to the warden that there was no bear, nor had there ever been one, and he certainly hadn t shot one! That was a moment that is forever etched in our minds. He was just like one of us!
He continued to sign autographs on shirts, dollar bills, back tags, hats and whatever else we could come up with til late in the evening. He was such fun to get to know as a person and never acted like he was any better than any of us. His attitude of having fun and being able to relate, is the reason so many Packer Fans fell in love with him. He is just one of the guys.
The smiles on the faces of our crew were priceless. That day forever seared into our memories. He is welcome to come anytime and hunt with us or just shoot the bull (not the bear). We have many great pictures and very fond memories of the day Brett Favre came to hunting camp!
See the original article at CampWildGirls.com
Guns and Fun! Growing up in Rural South Dakota, I have always sought after outdoor adventure. We were snowed in during the winter way more than I ever wanted. Guns and amunition were accessible in every vehicle we owned and binoculars every window. Opening weekend of pheasant season was our big family reunion. Next to Christmas, it was the only time I saw many of my relatives. The landscape provided a never ending opportunity for target practice and fun with a variety of weapons. Looking back hunting was our entertainment. I really didn t know any different. It was our lifestyle. We openly shared this way of life with our family, our neighbors and many others. People came from all over to hunt with us. Even my very first suitor and I scoured the country side stalking a variety of prized game.
I attribute my deep appreciation of the outdoors to my parents. My mother s nurturing way and my father s continued encouragement to open my senses; to really see and enjoy nature around me. Their conservation efforts of my youth are proudly evident and thriving today. It is my joy and honor to continue in their legacy, to promote and preserve this passion for future generations.
The Quest for continued adventure in my life and the joy of sharing with others were the foundational factors supporting the development of the Team Huntress.
Team Huntress was formed as an avenue to direct and empower women on their path toward outdoor success. By providing exploration and discovery in a safe and secure environment, ladies will be aligned to boost their confidence and self esteem. Feel the Enthusiasm and Passion unfold as illumination in time honored practices are delivered from professionals in the outdoor industry. Unite with a group of kindred spirits as we encourage each other to progress and advance to a new level of proficiency in the great outdoors
The Team Huntress Outdoor Adventure Clinic is debuting June 11-14, 2009 in northern South Dakota hosted by Pheasant Phun at the OJ Bar Ranch offering hands-on outdoor skill building amid a spa pampering resort experience. Our emphasis is in the three core skills of archery, gear and firearms.
o Hand guns
o Apparel for women
Part clinic/ part retreat Team Huntress members will gain skills and knowledge for outdoor success each day plus some well deserved pampering and relaxation time.Team Huntress empowering women for outdoor success!
It is my endeavor to enhance your desire for adventure. It is my hope with the tools and skills gained through your association with Team Huntress you will be better prepared for the hunt of your life.
Join the Adventure Team and open a new chapter in your life; let The Huntress begin.
See the original article at CampWildGirls.com