North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission

Becoming an Outdoors-Woman Program Creates Lasting Memories

Author: NCWRC blogger/Wednesday, November 01, 2017/Categories: Hunter Education

Becoming an Outdoors-Woman Program Creates Lasting Memories

I recently attended a Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) event where I was introduced to archery and became hooked. A few months later, I bought a bow and started shooting. I planned to only shoot targets, because even though I grew up with a hunting family, I was never interested in hunting. Then I attended a BOW weekend where I went on a mentored turkey hunt and everything changed. From then on, I got it in my mind to learn to bow hunt.

After learning a bit about bowfishing, I purchased a reel setup and anxiously looked forward to this year's BOW weekend. I had a great time shooting those floating gar targets, and the instructors were knowledgeable, instructive and encouraging. This summer, I went out to the coast with the N.C. Bowhunters Association and shot two stingrays, one weighing in at almost 25 pounds. That was the first harvest I ever made with my bow, and it was thrilling. I was even able to convince my husband to attend with me. Hopefully, it will become an annual event for us.

I am also very excited to report that I harvested my first deer! A friend allowed me to hunt his land, so I scouted it out, set up a ground blind and a trail cam. I ended up shooting my first buck from around 15 yards away with my bow. I tracked him 75 yards to where he had fallen in a creek, then dragged him out of the woods, skinned and quartered him, packed up the ice chest, dragged it to my car and drove home. I aged and processed everything and now have a freezer full of venison to enjoy and share.  

I did all that by myself, although I realize now that I probably shouldn't hunt alone again. It’s safer and more fun to hunt with someone else. The only way I was able to do it was because of what I learned through BOW and with a lot of support, advice and encouragement from other hunters I met along the way. I have a whole new community of friends, new lifetime hobbies and interests, and a pretty impressive skill set that only came into being over the last three years. And it started at a BOW weekend.

What the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission does through the BOW program gives women like me the chance to try things we would never otherwise experience. It helps broaden our appreciation and exposure to the amazing wildlife resources around us, opening doors to a number of brand new paths. I hope that the Commission will be able to keep supporting the BOW program for years to come.  

I won't be able to attend the BOW weekend next April, but I will be sending a donation to support the general fund and scholarships as needed. 

Sincerely,

Lenora Berning
Mooresville
Guest Blogger

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