We are proud to welcome Terri Lee Pocernich to our Pro Staff Team here at HuntingLife.com. Her writing is excellent and her energy and dedication to the traditions and passions we have for hunting and conservation are infectious. We are lucky to have her on our team! Here is her first story for our site! – Kevin
I have at times run across hunting groups or men that feel women shouldn’t hunt. I was fortunate to have a father that included his daughter in the sport of hunting. I am the oldest “son” of three daughters, (lol), and the 3rd granddaughter to a Grandfather with no grandsons. Both my Dad and Grandpa encouraged me to take up hunting. Some girls were not so fortunate. “Hunting is our time to get away from the wives and kids!” was and still is a common feeling at some hunting camps. Many guys don’t know what they are missing.
I started hunting with our gang at age 10. I would follow my Dad through the woods, trying to walk exactly in his footsteps so I didn’t make a sound. By age 12, I was able to start carrying a rifle, having taken my hunter safety course and learning from my dad for the previous two years. There were 4 first time hunters that started hunting that year. I wasn’t treated any differently than the three boys. I did my fair share of drives through briar patches with vines reaching over my head or the poplar slashes so thick you had to sling your gun, put your hat on backwards and crawl to get through them. I have also harvested my fair share of bucks large and small, gutted my own deer, and processed the meat myself. All of these things have made me a better hunter and given me a greater respect for my Dad and Grandpa, and nature herself
As I started dating out of high school, my favorite date was to go grouse hunting. I have some very fond memories of days in the spent in woods, exploring nature with a young man I was to later marry and have children with. Hunting seasons became a little more challenging after children, but with the help of babysitters (thanks mom!) our 9 day rifle season became our vacation! The kids loved to go to camp and check out what the day had produced. As they grew into young adults and started hunting with us and we cherished that time spent together as a family looking forward to it each year. At one point in time, we had four generations hunting together. Grandpa hunted with us until the age of 89. He quit only after having broke his pelvis in a car accident.
As life brings about changes and I found myself single again, I began to dating my current husband, who is an avid hunter. I had recently taken up bow hunting myself, and our best dates were spent in bow stands or having friendly little hunting competitions. We became hunting partners and best friends! Now we are life partners too. We will raise our little girl to appreciate hunting and nature. If she chooses to become a huntress, we will encourage and teach her together. Some of my most important relationships, have blossomed because of hunting. Spending countless hours telling hunting stories with and about, Grandpa, Dad, my kids and now my husband. I can’t imagine how different my life would be, if my Dad had said to me, “You can’t go, you’re a girl.” Thanks Dad!