When I decided to learn archery and how to bowhunt, I never realized I would be joining such a supportive and enthusiastic community. Yet that is one of the many side benefits to this fun sport — the camaraderie within the bowhunting family and the welcome new bowhunters receive — no matter their age or skill level or reason for getting started.
For women interested in pursuing the sport, the reality is women of all ages are picking up a bow for the first time, proving that bowhunting has broad appeal. The general perception of women who hunt also is shifting, which translates into more women looking for role models to connect with – either those they personally know or those they meet through other ways. While many women may learn alongside a husband, brother, or boyfriend, not everyone may have that option so it’s important to seek people who are also involved in bowhunting.
Social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn offer various platforms for open and supportive discussion. Like-minded women interested in hunting are great sounding boards for gear questions, location options, and general hunting information. The sites give women a platform to share their stories and creates open communication for those who want to help push a positive message and provide support to other women bowhunters.
Finding knowledgeable bowhunters that tell stories, share strategies and outcomes, hunting surprises or letdowns is such a huge part of bowhunting. Sharing the passion for the hunt and all the nuances that come with it is important.
With 13.7 million hunters in the U.S. (according to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) and 18.9 million Americans who have participated in archery and/or bowhunting (according to the Archery Trade Association), there are so many people out there available to chat or willing to commiserate. Hunting does not have to be a solitary sport.
As a newer bowhunter, I can attest to the support garnered through these networks. It is important to reach out and connect with other women involved in the sport. The bowhunting community is genuine, friendly and helpful. So what are you waiting for?
New to bowhunting? Check out my “Beginner’s Guide to Archery: For Women” DVD available HERE.