Women Hunters Take to the Fields and Forests of Oklahoma

by Grace Ann

Some girls were just raised into hunting, but many others are finding a new love of the sport and social media may be part of the shift in who all is getting their hunting license.

“Every time a girl sees another girl doing something, that’s empowering to them and they see that and think well she looks like she is having a good time, if she can do that then I can do that,” Tess Maune, an Oklahoma hunter and journalist, said. 

Maune said she has received some negative comments about her love of hunting, but none of the negatives compare to the joy of being out in the woods. 

“The peacefulness, in the morning you get to wake up with the woods and in the evening you get to watch the woods go to sleep. But I feel lucky that for the most part, I get a lot of encouragement and support, but being a woman there is definitely that sided of things were people kind of want to talk down to you or pretend that you may not know as much as they do,” Maune said. 

So many memories are made out in the woods and those are special moments that not everyone gets unless they take the leap to start hunting. 

“I think about the people who don’t hunt and I think what kind of memories do they have? Do they remember that movie that they watched last night or that dinner that they had? With hunting, even your worst hunt you have some sort of memory, some sort of special lesson that goes along with it, and so for me, it is every memory that I am making along the journey! For me, I have almost ten years of wonderful memories, a couple of heart-breaking moments in the woods, and that’s the thrill of it all for me.”  

Maune has also taken her love of hunting into her job as a journalist with Griffin Communication’s KOTV.

“I also hunted with a Ninety-three-year-old, and we got out to the woods and we sat down, I didn’t even think that the photographer was set up before this man pulled the trigger and got a deer, it was the fastest hunt I have ever been a part of! He was using a shotgun with slugs, he had knocked the deer down within 3 minutes of us getting to our spot and sitting down” Maune said. 

There is nothing like being out in nature and harvesting your first animal, the pride that comes with it is something only a few people get to experience and knowing that the animal is going to provide for you and your family. 

“It was 2012, October, black powder season, and my first hunting experience was awesome! It was on my husband’s family land, hunting on a spot where he grew up hunting, he put up a tree stand for me and a tree stand for him because we didn’t have a two-man ladder stand, he wanted to be right there next to me. It was a great hunt I shot what some people might criticize  as being too small of a buck, but to this day it is one of my very favorite hunts and one of my proudest harvests, it was a good shot and I knew from that moment on that I wanted to be a hunter”

“If you’re going to take a life and that’s the thing about deer hunting, you can not take lightly taking a life, so when I’m hunting I have an enormous respect for the animal I’m taking, because I know that it’s going to feed me, I know that it lived a life, that it had a heartbeat, and that means a lot to me” Maune said.   

Deer season ends January 15th, 2022, so you have very limited time to participate this year. However, there is no better time than now to start preparing for the next hunting season.

“Do it, find someone who is a hunter or there are women in the outdoors groups, find those people and find those groups and get started, just asking the first question is the first step to open doors in the outdoors” Maune said.

HOW TO PREPARE FOR YOUR FIRST HUNT

The first thing when preparing for a hunt is making sure that you have all the right licenses and tags. They are easy to get and they are important to have. If you don’t have the correct licenses and tags then you could get in trouble with the game warden, so make sure that you have all the correct licenses. 

The next thing that you are going to want to do is prepare your hunting area. If you have your own land that’s great, but if not that’s ok also there is a lot of public land in the state of Oklahoma.

For those who have their own land you are going to want to start setting up your hunting area, which includes finding a good spot on your land where you have seen a lot of activity among the animals, the next important thing is making a blind whether that is a tree stand, box blind, or even a ground blind.

After you have your blind set up, you may consider setting up a feeder. In Oklahoma it is legal to have feeders or to scatter corn around on the ground.

Finally, you are going to want to set up trail cameras so you know what is coming into your feeder. 

Hunting on public land is a little different because it is public, everyone has access to it, so you always want to keep that in mind.

First, you are going to want to go scout the land to see which spot you think is the best.

Next, you are going to want to set up a blind, feeder, and cameras. Always remember that you are on public land so you could very possibly go out there one day and someone else is in your spot. 

The next step is one of the most important steps and that’s patience.

Patience is crucial to being a good hunter. Just because you wake up early and go set out in your stand does not mean that you are going to get to harvest an animal that day. You may go on a couple of hunts before you actually harvest something. 

After you have been patient and harvested the animal you are going to want to take it to the processor to get the meat, but to make it easier on the processor you are going to want to field dress it.

That is simple but complicated at the same time if you are not sure how to do it you may want to talk to your processor before you go on your hunt or even look up how to do it on YouTube. 

Your steps are almost over, if your animal has antlers, or even if it doesn’t, you may want to consider having it mounted. Having a taxidermized piece of art will hold memories of your hunt forever.

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