My teenage daughter Logan is as much of an outdoor nut as I am. I brought her out last summer, at her insistence, to try her hand at fly fishing on the Dream Stream. This fall she is adamant she wants to accompany me on a Denver Front Range waterfowl hunting expedition. I love it! I don’t even have to push her to get involved. However, I do want to make sure it’s a good experience for her.
It’s up to me now to properly outfit her with a waterfowling gun that will be comfortable to use and have a manageable recoil, as well as one that’s easy to maneuver in the field. Most factory shotguns are designed with about 14 inches of stock after the trigger, set up for the average 5’10” male. Logan is a few inches shorter and likely does not have as much upper body strength, so these designs will not do. It is difficult to shoot successfully if the stock is too long. I will have to research manufacturers who produce shotguns with shorter stocks specifically for women.
I am considering starting Logan with a 20 gauge, at least until she gains some confidence in the field. I don’t want to curb her enthusiasm with the recoil from a 12 gauge. I am also planning to take her out for some clay shooting to model proper gun mounting and shooting stance. Logan will have to complete a hunter’s education course, so this works out perfectly with our next visit to Minturn Anglers in Denver. She is excited to sign up for their Colorado Waterfowl School, which will provide her with a half day of information about waterfowl hunting, as well as a morning of actual hunting in the field under the supervision of an expert guide from Minturn Anglers.
I just know it is going to be an exciting hunting season!