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(Questions/Advice) Wife wants to start hunting

Anschutz

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Ladies of Hunt Talk,

My wife recently and quite unexpectedly decided that she wants to hunt with me this fall. I am in the service and we are currently waiting on our next assignment which is looking like Alaska (Fairbanks). With that in mind, Caribou and Moose are, hopefully, on the table. This was out of the blue as she had never shown any interest.

Q1: (Rifle) We went to Green Top to look for a rifle that will fit her. She is 4'11" so I was scouring the racks for a rifle with a LOP that will fit her. She has her mind pretty much set on the Tikka T3x Compact (Finnish/Italian heritage on her side and Finnish Manufacture/Italian ownership for Tikka). I wish Tikka made a stainless compact model but I cannot find one in their history or catalog. I don't want to scare her away from hunting so I am keeping recoil in mind. This leads me to the 7mm-08 Remington. Do any of you have any experience with the Tikka or have any other models I should try to show her?

Q2 (Clothing) I know there are women-specific hunting clothing manufacturers out there. Keeping her comfortable in the elements will be key. Who should I look at for clothing?

Q3 What advice do you have for a husband trying to stay married when taking their SO out hunting for the first time?

Thank you.

Zach
 
Not a lady but here's my 2 cents, my wife started a couple years back after the kids were old enough to tag along. Ever since then I think I've created a monster just FYI.......

1. Tikka is a solid brand for sure if it fits her nicely and she becomes comfortable around it that's a great choice.

2. Depends on the clothing company per say some have women's lines and shoot some women can fit in kids stuff.... I have a mixture of things for my wife. Some women's gear but mostly not, more times than not I buy her a small or medium in the regular men's gear. It's worked nicely but expensive to Haha, It all is

3. Stay humble, calm and PATIENCE is key remember if you've been hunting for a number of years some things are just almost robotic for you. A good example is getting set up on an animal to shoot, typically you find it instantly and because she hasn't done it much it can be a little more challenging to pull down on it....... I've heard I can't see him so many times and a couple I could've puked. Hahaha most important keep it fun for everyone. Some people get soured quick on miserable situation right out of the box.

Good luck! And to her to!
 
Rifle - look at Bergara B14 Hunters. They have the same LOP as my compact Ruger had. The regular off-the-rack rifle fits me perfectly. I bought 2 in the last year...love them. I don’t know what her shooting experience and comfort is, but in Alaska I would keep bears in mind when selecting a caliber.

Clothing - I love the women’s stuff from First Lite. Prois isn’t terrible, not quite First Lite quality but certain pieces are ok. I have not tried the Sitka women’s stuff. I supplement with good gear from non-hunting outdoors companies too as needed. It’s getting better, but the sizes and variety of gear types for women from the hunting specific companies are still fairly limited.

Question 3 is a tough one because we’re all different. I tend to be the independent type that wants to learn to do things myself. I don’t respond well when Hunting Husband tries to do too much for me. Others like having more help with things. You know her best. Communication about expectations before you get out there is probably key to making sure you both have a good experience. She should know what to expect out there and what she’ll have to do (how far? How cold? How heavy will the pack be?). You should know what she’s willing to do, what she’s not, what she wants to learn, what she would prefer you do. Once you both have a feel for that, then pick a hunt that fits within those expectations. After you have one under the belt, you can talk about the experience and adjust from there.

Good luck! My husband taught me and it’s been life changing. I can’t imagine not being a hunter now.
 
+1 on the 7-08 with 140 accubonds

My best advice to not over look whatever it takes for her to be comfortable and have fun. The sitting still, being quiet and often uncomfortable for long periods is a skill we have all adapted to over time and can quickly turn a new hunter against it if pushed too hard! The investment up front is well worth the time you get to enjoy together later
 
Clothing - I love the women’s stuff from First Lite. Prois isn’t terrible, not quite First Lite quality but certain pieces are ok. I have not tried the Sitka women’s stuff. I supplement with good gear from non-hunting outdoors companies too as needed.
I will look at First Lite, I forgot they had a women's line. It may give me a chance to upgrade from my cabela's camo at the same time. We both have plenty of hiking gear and I use my hiking pants for hunting as well.

Can’t say much, as my wife loves to cook it and eat it, but will not kill it! Great choice on the Tikka 7-08. Load it with 140 Accubombs and kill stuff!

You read my mind on bullets. My wife is just one step beyond yours. She'll cook it, shoot it, and pack it but she says the guttin' and gillin' is up to me.
 
Comfort, fun, see animals. All a must (same for all new hunters!)

I hunt with my wife reguarly, rather hunt with her than anyone. One thought, don't take your gun, or at least agree before who shoots first.

Much depends on her and the relationship. Will she want to help take it apart and pack it, will she want to glass or take a nap.

Know her limits (and yours) for how far to hike, shoot, pack

My wife shoots a TC Venture in 7-08 with 139 grain interlocks. So far, more than deadly on antelope up to a 300 lb mule deer.

BTW all of this goes for taking any new hunter!
 
Great thread and I'm happy for you both! My wife was not into hunting or fishing at all 8 years ago when I met her. Now she is along on 75% of my trips. EYJONAS said it well above, you will want to pull your hair out when she has animal in range and can't find it in the scope or can't get steady for the shot. I also have taught 2 daughters to hunt so I've seen a lot of these types of instances.
One piece of advice is to get a Ruger 10/22 or similar rifle with a scope and have her practice a TON at shooting cans, balloons, milk jugs, anything you can so that she can learn to shoulder the gun quickly and transition from one target to another. That will be incredibly valuable when the time comes that she has an animal in range. I also find that it's best if we just have one tag to fill at a time, theirs, not mine. They can come along on my hunt as well if they like but I find it best if I don't have a tag and can just focus on doing whats best for the ladies style and abilities. Don't push her too hard or far in the hills.
Best wishes and please share the stories and memories as they are made.
 
Q1: no clue we bow hunt mainly
Q2: Clothing will be a mix, it is super hard for my wife to find items that will actually fit her and are not huge or oddly cut. She likes most First lite who seem to be doing a fairly good job in the women's line. I would say dont skimp here buy her the best it will make both of you happier in the long run.
Q3: Stay very patient if its anything like my wife its not like hunting with your buddies but it will increase your oppurtunities to get out and your chances at spending money on something you both like to do. Plus "vacation" really is going hunting.
 
1: If she found a rifle she likes, then get it. Afterall it'll be HER rifle and she needs to be comfortable with it.

2: I got my ex wife some 'she' apparel and the sizes ran very small. Talk about body shaming when a 5'7" woman who weighed 120 pounds had to wear an xl jacket. Would not recommend.

3: Let her do her thing. I remember my ex's excitement just seeing animals in her binoculars. I never forced a shot on her, no matter how easy it would have been. She took her shot when she was comfortable and everything was right to her. It got frustrating at times, but we were there for her and not my ego.
 
MY wife hunts...waterfowl, caribou, elk, and deer. She chose a Browning Micro 7mm-08 with a compact Leupold 2 - 7X. Clothes are a bit of a problem as she is 5'2". I make suggestions and she makes her choices. Her clothing is a mix of woman's hunting series, small men's, and some woman's hiking/skiing stuff. My suggestion : LET HER MAKE THE FINAL CHOICES regarding everything from the rifle, clothing, gear, stand placement, and shot opportunity !!! She is also a dedicated horse girl. George Strait says it best in his song How Bout Them Cowgirls : "you can't tell 'em nothin" !!! She is my very best hunting partner !!!
 
Ladies of Hunt Talk,

My wife recently and quite unexpectedly decided that she wants to hunt with me this fall. I am in the service and we are currently waiting on our next assignment which is looking like Alaska (Fairbanks). With that in mind, Caribou and Moose are, hopefully, on the table. This was out of the blue as she had never shown any interest.

Q1: (Rifle) We went to Green Top to look for a rifle that will fit her. She is 4'11" so I was scouring the racks for a rifle with a LOP that will fit her. She has her mind pretty much set on the Tikka T3x Compact (Finnish/Italian heritage on her side and Finnish Manufacture/Italian ownership for Tikka). I wish Tikka made a stainless compact model but I cannot find one in their history or catalog. I don't want to scare her away from hunting so I am keeping recoil in mind. This leads me to the 7mm-08 Remington. Do any of you have any experience with the Tikka or have any other models I should try to show her?

Q2 (Clothing) I know there are women-specific hunting clothing manufacturers out there. Keeping her comfortable in the elements will be key. Who should I look at for clothing?

Q3 What advice do you have for a husband trying to stay married when taking their SO out hunting for the first time?

Thank you.

Zach

Unfortunately April is unavailable at this time. She has done a fair amount of research ( plus real life knowledge ) of rifles over the years, but I will do my best to answer your questions

The one thing she recommended for a female friend of mine has worked out very well. The Weatherby Camilla . They are build==grip, lop, stock design for a female and they did it very well, plus Weatherby's are good rifles. They also are very inexpensive 850 for the wilderness model, less for wood and blue . Either the 308 or 7mm-08 will work, but both my friend and April's granddaughter got the 7mm-08. April's granddaughter has hunted Spain, Africa and U.S, with hers. My friend has only used hers for Caribou, Moose, Wolf, I believe. April at this point would be adding, that with the quality of bullets on the market today, the 7mm-08 is an excellent North America Rifle.

I am of no help in clothing, as we make, add to and or alter almost everything we wear. However, if your next stop is Alaska, wait until you get there and the clothes they offer may be a bit better ( selection wise ) for her, as quite a few females hunt Alaska .

Have fun, dont try to do everything, dont be judgmental, practice, practice, practice, shooting and then practice some more, Act like you WANT to be hunting with her, not doing it just because she wants to do it and spend time with you. Dont make her feel she is taking you away from time with your "buds". Also when practicing dont shoot past two hundred yards, maybe even 100 yards, a first. Put a fixed power scope on the rifle. I dont know her but dont assume she can't hold her own, she might surprise you. TELL her you are glad she wants to go with you and after the hunt, tell her your glad she did.

On a different thread someone said they thought that Hunt Talk was turning into Ann Landers. I would suggest you look at the number of thread's started by the gentlemen on the forum that are not hunt related. But either way, I do know that, that comment was shared between some of the women on the forum and we have no desire in making anyone uncomfortable with our presence. So will not start any non hunting threads in the future. I mention this just in case someone feels my answer to his third question was Ann Landerish. It was not intended to be. Just a female member answering the gentleman's question
 
Ladies of Hunt Talk,

My wife recently and quite unexpectedly decided that she wants to hunt with me this fall. I am in the service and we are currently waiting on our next assignment which is looking like Alaska (Fairbanks). With that in mind, Caribou and Moose are, hopefully, on the table. This was out of the blue as she had never shown any interest.

Q1: (Rifle) We went to Green Top to look for a rifle that will fit her. She is 4'11" so I was scouring the racks for a rifle with a LOP that will fit her. She has her mind pretty much set on the Tikka T3x Compact (Finnish/Italian heritage on her side and Finnish Manufacture/Italian ownership for Tikka). I wish Tikka made a stainless compact model but I cannot find one in their history or catalog. I don't want to scare her away from hunting so I am keeping recoil in mind. This leads me to the 7mm-08 Remington. Do any of you have any experience with the Tikka or have any other models I should try to show her?

Q2 (Clothing) I know there are women-specific hunting clothing manufacturers out there. Keeping her comfortable in the elements will be key. Who should I look at for clothing?

Q3 What advice do you have for a husband trying to stay married when taking their SO out hunting for the first time?

Thank you.

Zach
You got your wife to hunt? We should be asking advice from you!
 
I can not add much to what Hunting Wife and Panda Bear have posted

That Tikka will work, nice rifles. The Weatherby camilla will work, very nice rifles and as mentioned in addition to the lop and size of grip, the stock is toed out and fits nicely, especially recoil to body wise

Clothes, there are much better choices available all the time , Nomad, Sitka, Prois, Alaska Elk, even Cabalas and Bass Pro keep expanding their lines of women wear. I was trying to find the company that April sent me, but was unable to do so. Very nice, as is the price o_O

Hunting wife said it best on number three. We are all different so you know her better than we do. Good luck, have fun.
 
I'm not a woman, but my gf is in the same boat

Q1: She bought, and loves her Savage 11 compact Southpaw in 7mm-08. It came with a Nikon 3-9x40 that I hate but she loves it. With 140gr Accubond federals it'll cloverleaf on paper all day every day. She's 5'3" for a height reference.

Q2: This is the real bear. Physically she's not a rail, and finding good clothing that fits her well has been, lets say interesting. Luckily we live in AZ and used to live in NY, so she's got some hiking clothes for warmer weather (She loves the Wrangler outdoor pants btw) but I think we're going to save some nickles and get some First Lite wool for her.

Q3: Be patient and don't over do it in the explaining and doing. Let her figure it out and only help when asked. Steph likes it when I explain what I'm doing in the woods and why I did that certain thing, but I can't explain every little thing or she'll think I'm talking down to her, which I'm not, but that's the way it goes sometimes. Steph's been on a few hunts with me already, including shooting her first animal before we moved to AZ (A jake one wet May morning). She drew a muley tag 2 seasons ago but wasn't able to use it. Finger crossed for some luck this fall!
 
Theres a key point mentioned by a few. There's two things you should NOT do for your wife/GF when it comes to hunting:
1) Choose a bow for her
2) Choose a gun for her

Have her do it. She has to feel it, fit it, make sure she likes it. when my wife got her rifle, we went to the Harrisburg PA show (lived in NH at the time). We went every gun booth there, she worked with the booth staff, not me. I chose the cartridge, she chose the gun. Any booth that talked past her to me, we just walked away. Note we also filtered out outfitters the same way, she would walk up, with me behind. If they looked past her to me, they were instantly off the list.

I also second the .22 route for practice, no recoil and cheap ammo!
 
@Anschutz,

#1: Hands down, the chosen rifle has to "FIT" your wife! My wife has shot and hunted with various rifles over the years and now loves her standard Remington model-7, 20" barrel, dropped into a synthetic Remington youth stock. The short LOP of the youth stock fits her perfectly but she is a few inches taller at 5' 3". The caliber, of her choosing, is the Rem. 260 as she is not a fan of recoil. Her rifle is topped with an older Leupold compact 3-9. My wife also uses a Harris swivel head bipod to stabilize her crosshires while waiting for that "Perfect" shot on game. Very important side note, make sure while mounting the scope, on her chosen rifle, that she is able to see the full sight picture. This is extremely important and is compounded when mounting a variable powered scope. Once the rifle is shouldered, if your wife has to move her head in order to see through the scope, this will lead to frustration!

#2: What ever clothing that she is comfortable in that will meet the outdoor environmental needs of any particular outing. My wife is cold blooded and requires many layers to combat this. She loves her Rivers-West pants that she picked up on clearance a few years back. The Rivers-West line is mostly waterproof, warm, stretchy and quiet. She also loves her insulated Meindl Denali boots until it gets really cold and snowy when she switches to a pack style winter boot. If your wife has long hair, many companies offer women's stocking caps with a built in pony-tail hole, HIGHLY recommended by my wife!

#3: My biggest mistake while hunting with my wife is not slowing down my pace! My stride almost doubles hers and it frustrates her when she feels like she has to almost jog to keep up.

My wife told me the same thing nearly 30 years ago! As @EYJONAS! stated above, a monster was created! With that said, I have witnessed many wives try hunting and then decide that it just was not their cup of tea. I think that it all depends on your shared passion for experiencing the wonders of the outdoors first, the additional time spent together is secondary. With everything new in life, first comes the learning curve and how that information is relayed constitutes how it will be received. No better way to learn something than to do it for yourself. With your possible AK relocation, hunting moose and caribou would be a learning curve for both of you, fun times!

Thank You for your service sir! I wish you and your wife GOOD LUCK with all of your shared life adventures.

Mtnhunter1
 
Dont treat her like one of your normal hunting buddies. Thats the best advice I can give you and you'll remember I told you that.

Those times when things fall apart and you bitch a little at your hunting buddies will NOT work with you wife. So hold your tongue. Trust me.
 
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@Anschutz,

#1: Hands down, the chosen rifle has to "FIT" your wife! My wife has shot and hunted with various rifles over the years and now loves her standard Remington model-7, 20" barrel, dropped into a synthetic Remington youth stock. The short LOP of the youth stock fits her perfectly but she is a few inches taller at 5' 3". The caliber, of her choosing, is the Rem. 260 as she is not a fan of recoil. Her rifle is topped with an older Leupold compact 3-9. My wife also uses a Harris swivel head bipod to stabilize her crosshires while waiting for that "Perfect" shot on game. Very important side note, make sure while mounting the scope, on her chosen rifle, that she is able to see the full sight picture. This is extremely important and is compounded when mounting a variable powered scope. Once the rifle is shouldered, if your wife has to move her head in order to see through the scope, this will lead to frustration!

#2: What ever clothing that she is comfortable in that will meet the outdoor environmental needs of any particular outing. My wife is cold blooded and requires many layers to combat this. She loves her Rivers-West pants that she picked up on clearance a few years back. The Rivers-West line is mostly waterproof, warm, stretchy and quiet. She also loves her insulated Meindl Denali boots until it gets really cold and snowy when she switches to a pack style winter boot. If your wife has long hair, many companies offer women's stocking caps with a built in pony-tail hole, HIGHLY recommended by my wife!

#3: My biggest mistake while hunting with my wife is not slowing down my pace! My stride almost doubles hers and it frustrates her when she feels like she has to almost jog to keep up.

My wife told me the same thing nearly 30 years ago! As @EYJONAS! stated above, a monster was created! With that said, I have witnessed many wives try hunting and then decide that it just was not their cup of tea. I think that it all depends on your shared passion for experiencing the wonders of the outdoors first, the additional time spent together is secondary. With everything new in life, first comes the learning curve and how that information is relayed constitutes how it will be received. No better way to learn something than to do it for yourself. With your possible AK relocation, hunting moose and caribou would be a learning curve for both of you, fun times!

Thank You for your service sir! I wish you and your wife GOOD LUCK with all of your shared life adventures.

Mtnhunter1

I had a similar issue with my ex and her rifle, but I bought a comb raising kit with the various sized foam layers to get it just right for her. It was like magic!!
 
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Always run the daily plan past her and negotiate from there. Have three plans that you don't mind doing and let her choose. DO NOT include any plans that you will not be satisfied with.
"Here are OUR options, A, B or C you pick from one of these."
I do this a lot. Because it doesn't seem like I am choosing the plan for the day. But in secret I already did. lol

Don't set her up with ANY kind of scope with adjustable turrets and lights and lasers.... Keep it simple. standard 3-9 scope of any decent brand.

Don't have her shoot at animals over 200 yards. I pushed my wife to take a shot at a black bear at 300 yards in Alaska and regretted it to this day. Long story. lol
What is a chip shot for you will NOT be a chip shot for her.

Never tell your wife "I think we can find a better one" if she is happy shooting what is in front of her. Also learned this the hard way.

Get up a half hour earlier. It takes them a lot more time to get ready than us "get up and go types".

Stay in a hotel if it is doable. It's a moral booster for most women to get a shower a day. Guys like me can grind it out 14 days. A woman doesn't like to do that.

Stop to look at cool things you usually wouldn't. "Hey, let's check out that waterfall while we are here" "let's go over there and pick up that shed" things like that.

Get her binoculars that fit her eyes.... not all adjust close enough for a woman's eye span center to center.

Always stay positive until the last minute of the last day. "I tell my wife is takes 3 seconds to go from zero to hero" and I have proven that to her a lot so she believes me now.

Keep her feet dry. You don't like it when your feet get wet, but women HATE it.

Always let her shoot first. Always. No exceptions.

Avoid walking out in the dark 3 miles though blowdowns.... been there. I am cool with staying out 3 miles from camp until dark. Most people are not. Women really dont like it.

Have a hot meal planned for every evening. Trust me.

Take opportunities to stalk animals you don't intend to kill. It's worth the learning experience. Trust me.

If she wants to sleep in while you go hunting. Let her. Don't force it. Trust me.

Don't invite one of your buddies to hunt with you and your wife. If you are inviting one, invite 2 so they can hunt together, and you and your wife can hunt together.
Don't invite 2 said buddies unless your wife is 100% cool with it.
 
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