Noodling for New Hunters

NWTF’s WITO events across the country are providing thousands of women exciting opportunities to get involved in both their communities and outdoors. Be it hunting, fishing, shooting sports or conservation field days, NWTF WITO coordinators across the U.S. are working to increase national hunting participation by peeking the interest of women and providing a meaningful entrance to conservation and hunting as a whole.

Sierra Michels, NWTF’s Oklahoma WITO coordinator, is always thinking of new and exhilarating ways to engage the women in her state.

“I first went noodling for catfish not too long ago,” Michels said. “After that, I was hooked and could not stop talking about how much fun it was, and I thought it could make for a great NWTF WITO event.”

Noodling is a type of fishing where only one’s bare hands are used to land a catfish. To be safe, most noodlers practice this age-old method of fishing in wadable depths of water where they can easily reach into a catfish den and latch onto the fish. Be sure to check your state’s local regulations for this type of fishing, as rules vary widely across the country.

“We had a small group of women for this event,” Michels said. “Some of them reached out to me on Facebook and said they were new to the outdoors and a bit shy, so this small group of women was a perfect event for them.”

NWTF volunteers from across Oklahoma and staff from Hype Outdoors assisted with the event and even taught the noodlers how to clean their recently caught fish.

“Everybody was really interested in how to turn their catch into food,” Michels said. “Needless to say, the fish fry was delicious and all the women in the event went home with a gallon Ziplock bag full of catfish.”

Michels and the Oklahoma flock are excited that one of the event attendees, who was completely new to fishing, hunting and the outdoors as a whole, is planning on attending the NWTF Oklahoma three-day mentored hunting event in November.

“For us this is what it’s all about. Providing meaningful experiences and recruiting new hunters,” Michels said.

To learn how you can get involved in your region, click here.

To learn more about NWTF’s WITO program, click here.

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