Huntresses Take to Wyoming for Antelope Hunt

Courtney with her Wyoming buck. (Photo courtesy of Courtney Nicolson)

From New York City girl to Colorado Huntress, Courtney Nicolson has founded "Colorado Women Who Hunt" and embraces the outdoor life every chance she gets

Sitting in a room with 43 other female hunters, about to begin a weekend of pronghorn hunting in Wyoming, I couldn’t help but think of how unlikely it was for me to be here. There’s a very good chance that I may never have become a hunter at all! I didn’t grow up in a hunting family. My father would take us fishing and clamming on the shores of Cape Cod, but hunting was just not part of my world. I moved to New York City to pursue a career in television production and after a few years ended up at Sportsman Channel. At that time, I had never hunted, never shot a firearm or bow.


fresh organic meat antelope
Nothing better than fresh, organic meat that
you caught yourself!(Photo courtesy of
CourtneyNicolson)

After about a year of working with our show footage, meeting all of our on-air talent and producing some on location shoots my curiosity was piqued. I was introduced to a young woman about my age who offered to take me turkey hunting. It wasn’t until a few years later that I realized how rare my story was, to have my first hunting experience led by another female hunter. In fact, only 12 of the 44 women here shared that with me. From that first turkey hunt I was hooked.

Last year I moved to Colorado. It was an exciting new adventure but I didn’t know anyone in my new state. It was sad to say goodbye to my deer hunting friends who had become like family. Not long after I moved, I started ColoradoWomenWhoHunt.com. I imagined it as a resource for women to share and connect about hunting. Before I knew it, I found that most of my hunts were becoming all female!

I heard about the Wyoming Women’s Antelope Hunt when I was watching one of our shows Skullbound TV on Sportsman Channel. When I received the invite to attend, I was beyond excited. The first night was a blast. At dinner I met my hunting partner Danielle, our guides, and the landowners who owned the property we would be hunting. What a wonderful idea to have us all sit at a table together. We stayed up chatting and swapping hunting stories.


The next morning, we headed out on Danielle’s hunt. We walked and crawled and glassed and spooked a great buck. Finally, she got a shot on a buck and we were on the board! We took it back to the ranch and set off to fill my tag. I didn’t have any luck that evening. It was probably for the best, we would have missed the big live auction dinner festivities! It was a sold out crowd and everyone enjoyed themselves thoroughly.

On the second morning of the hunt it was chilly with grey skies. It started to flurry right as we arrived at the hunt area. I spotted a lone buck and jumped out of the truck. I was getting ready for the shot when we realized that there was actually two bucks, one lying down next to it. Well, by the time I picked which one I wanted to shoot the first one had laid down as well! We tried shouting to get them to stand up, but after that was unsuccessful I took my shot. My buck stayed down.

I was elated when I came back to camp to join the excitement at the meat pole. Everyone wanted to see my buck and hear my story. What a wonderful experience to all celebrate together! I got to work skinning my buck and headed over to the Butchering 101 demo. I’ve broken down quite a few big game animals but was really interested to see what I could learn from a formal demonstration. There’s no better feeling than packing your cooler with fresh organic meat to take home to share with friends and family!


The ladies spent the afternoon learning to fly fish, partaking in a wild came cookout, and shooting trap. I learned a thing or two from a fellow hunter that really upped my shotgun performance! When women can teach other women, I think that’s something really special. That is what this weekend was all about. The awards ceremony was bittersweet sharing our stories but also goodbyes. I am proud to now be a “sister of the sage” and look forward to keeping in touch with all the hunters and getting together throughout the year!

Learn more at WyomingWomensAntelopeHunt.org.

Recommended for You

Walleye

How to Fish Bottom Bouncers for Walleye

Mark Sak - May 23, 2019

While misunderstood by some, fishing bottom bouncers can be a very productive technique for...

Trout & Salmon

How to Catch the Biggest Trout in the Stream

David Paul Williams

Several factors need to be evaluated before reaching a conclusion about what fly, lure or...

Bass

MLF Pros: What's Your Go-To Lure?

G&F Online Staff - May 20, 2019

When all else fails, here's what these pros tie on.

See More Recommendations

Trending Stories

Catfish

10 Biggest Catfish World Records of All Time

Jack Vitek - December 08, 2014

Unless you live in Antarctica, the only continent they aren't known to inhabit, there is a...

Reels

10 Most Common Reel Performance Problems

Anietra Hamper

Fishing reel maintenance provides a steady stream of business for The Fisherman's Warehouse

Catfish

Understanding Catfish Spawning

Keith Sutton - June 06, 2006

Unlike many game fish, catfish can be harder to catch during the spawn. Here are some...

See More Stories

More Stories

Stories

Behind the Badge: A Warden's First Night-Poaching Bust

Game & Fish Online Staff - July 30, 2018

Behind the Badge is a regular series of perspective stories by Oklahoma game warden Carlos...

Stories

Coyote Calling Tips for Hunting at Close Range

Tim Lilley - January 09, 2014

Brian Meyer likes to have coyotes within 20 yards! He uses an SKB shotgun for his coyote...

Stories

Guns & Loads for Long-Range Coyote Hunting

Stephen D. Carpenteri - December 13, 2015

Predator hunters living in more open areas are in a unique position to enjoy coyote hunting at...

See More Stories

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.