Hello, my name is Christina and I am a 29 year old outdoors woman. I started going into the forests when I was in diapers, and have not stopped. I grew up in a family where my grandparents owned and operated a logging company long before I was born, my grandfather worked with Forest Service for a period of time, and most of my adult heroes in my family were outdoor enthusiasts. I have been going camping with family shortly after I was born, friends since elementary school, and even by myself since I was 16 . I started fishing at a young age with my yellow and white Snoopy kids fishing pool, catching catfish, bass, and even carp that seemed half my size. I started to go with my grandpa, uncle, step father, and a few male cousins when I was 8. From the time I started to archery deer hunt, I was the only female in the family who enjoyed it and wanted to go. Having grown up in the units we would go, my family would set me free to chase deer when they were having lunch or wanted to take breaks. My mother would occasionally pull me out of school and take me deer hunting when the men were working and could not get away.
I even recall my grandfather pulling me from classes to take me and continue with his teachings. My grandpa was my best friend, as is my uncle Vernon and mom, and listening to their stories around the campfire as a kid was awe inspiring. Getting to go out with them and learn, having them take time to teach me everything they could about being an ethical outdoors person, are some of my best memories. I was very fortunate to draw my first rifle bull elk tag in 2012 and even more lucky was the fact my grandfather was drawn as well, for the same hunt. My grandpa and uncle were there when I harvested my first bull and when we helped my grandpa get his bull, something that will be special and close to my heart forever. After that elk hunt, my grandpa and I started to put in together. In 2016, he decided we should put in for elk with my sister and her fiancé, all 4 of us on one application. We were all drawn for a third choice muzzleloader bull hunt. Again, my grandfather was there when I harvested my second bull along with my stepdad.
Little did I know how special this hunt would be. The following May, my grandfather was killed in an car crash on his way to go turkey hunting. The fact that my grandpa and I were able to share in my first bull hunt and his last, is something that made chasing elk even more special to me. These memories are the reason I will never give up my passion, the outdoors. Hunting, fishing, camping, hiking, and all these outdoor activities I have and continue to do with family and friends are more about the memories and time spent in nature than they are about the catches, harvests, what you sleep in, and where you go. These memories are about carrying on traditions, reliving special moments, and making new great memories with amazing people.
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