Some of you may have found out about GoWild through our friend, Gabriella Hoffman. Well, today we interview who actually first introduced us to Gabby—Andrea Haas, with Huntress View. If you haven't heard of Huntress View, they support and help women hunters—whether they're beginners or pros. Andrea tests products, provides tutorials and supports archery with efforts like #anarrowaday. She's built up over 60,000 social media followers across all of her accounts, and she's impacting hunting as a whole with her efforts to get more women into the field. We were excited to chat with her and help share her story. Enjoy.
GoWild: Tell us your outdoorsmanwoman story. What’s the first moment you realized you’re happiest outdoors?
Andrea: My love for the outdoors began when I was a little girl. Some of my favorite memories are from when my dad took me fishing on our old family farm in Oklahoma that my grandpa grew up on. We would use grasshoppers for bait, and I was usually the one that liked to catch the grasshoppers for everybody. We would also look for arrowheads and these tiny little rocks that looked kind of like flowers. I think they are called Oklahoma Rose Rocks. That was always so much fun to me, kind of like I was searching for treasure! It’s probably not what most 9 or 10-year-old girls liked to do, but to me, it just didn’t get any better than that.
GoWild: Now, you’re a pretty serious archer. Tell us about your gear.
Andrea: Well, I’ve been shooting the same bow since 2011, my Bowtech HeartBreaker. It has been a really great bow so I really see no reason to use anything different for the time being! I do admit it’s tempting to get a new one, especially after seeing all the new women’s bows that have came out recently. But for now, the trusty HeartBreaker is just fine. I pretty much have the same mind-set with my bow equipment. I have been using Sword Sights, Vaportrail Pro-V Limbdriver arrow rest and Stokerized Stabilizers for years and again, I see no reason to change something that has worked so well for me! I tend to change it up here and there with my broadheads, but eventually it seems like I always go back to the fixed blade Muzzy 100s. They’re just hard to beat in my opinion.
GoWild: What’s your favorite hunting season? Why?
Andrea: If you would have asked me this five years ago I would have said deer season, without a doubt. But now, I have to say that both dove and pheasant season have probably become my favorite. I still absolutely love deer season, don’t get me wrong but I do tend to get tired of being so serious and worrying about scent control and I like that bird hunting is a bit more relaxed. Dove season is a great way to kick off the hunting season in September and then after months of deer hunting, I really enjoy our annual pheasant hunt. It’s kind of a nice break and is nice to have a change of scenery as well. I always come back home refreshed and ready to head to my treestand again for late deer season.
GoWild: Who is the person who inspires you the most right now in the hunting industry or in hunting in general?
Andrea: Right now I have to say probably Eva Shockey is the most inspiring to me. She always represents herself, and the hunting community, well and seems like a genuine, kind person. I was chosen to be a member of her launch team for her new book, Taking Aim. In the book she shares her personal journey of how she became who she is today and how she overcame stereotypes during her journey. After reading the book and learning more about her background, a lot of preconceived notions that many may have about her being Jim Shockey's daughter and how she got started in the industry can be thrown out the window.
GoWild: How did you come about founding HuntressView?
Andrea: In spring of 2013, I took one of my girlfriends on a turkey hunt with me, which was her very first hunting experience. I was lucky enough to call in and shoot a nice gobbler. She told me after the hunt that she was glad that she could learn about hunting from another woman and that she would probably have never gone hunting if it wasn't for me. With that in mind I started doing some research online. I'm not saying that none existed, but I wasn't able to find any website or blog that provided feedback on hunting specifically from a woman's point of view, so I wanted to fill that void. In fall of 2013, I started the Huntress View blog and a Huntress View Facebook page. Later on I expanded by getting on Instagram and some other social media outlets, as well has having a website built. I just wanted there to be a good place where women could go to learn about hunting from other women
GoWild: At its core, what is the mission of HuntressView?
Andrea: Our mission with Huntress View is pretty simple: get more women involved in hunting and to be a good resource for all women hunters, whether they are experienced or just starting out. I feel that all of the Huntress View team members are great role models and are the epitome of what a sportswoman should look like, and I'm not talking about our outward appearance. We may all come from different hunting backgrounds and have different experience levels, but we all are ethical hunters, conservationists, and stewards of the land and we do our best to let that show.
GoWild: You’re making waves with your mission. You were recently featured on “Sportswomen You Should Know” with Gabriella, and you did an excellent job of empowering and encouraging women to live their own life and tell their own story their own way. What would you say to women who are just starting their outdoors journey?
Andrea: Thank you! I would say to just be genuine and always stay true to themselves. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and don’t be intimidated by others who have more experience than you. We all learn at our own pace and in our own ways.
One thing that I’ve noticed with newer hunters is that their hunting mentors will often try to get them to make a shot that may be ok for them, but that the newer hunter may not be comfortable with yet, such as a hitting longer shot than they should have practiced. Take shots that you feel comfortable with and pass on the ones that you don’t. There will be plenty of other good shot opportunities in your lifetime.
GoWild: How can people get involved with HuntressView?
Andrea: We love sharing stories from our followers and other women who love the outdoors and hunting just as much as we do. Sunday is designated as “Sportswomen Sunday” on our Instagram and Facebook page and we pick a woman to feature every evening who has tagged us in their posts that week.
Another way people can get involved, mostly women and young girls, is to just ask us questions about hunting/shooting. Of course we don’t know the answer to everything, but we are a good resource for women hunters and will provide feedback on topics that we have experience in and point them in the right direction to find answers for the topics that we may not know as much about.
GoWild: How can we help you further the mission of teaching and empowering women in the outdoors?
Andrea: I am so excited for the launch of the GoWild app! As I'm sure you know, other social media accounts are not very hunter friendly and will often censor or blur the images that we post highlighting a successful hunt. GoWild can help just by being a safe place where hunters can go to share their hunting experiences with others, as I'm sure it's only a matter of time before hunting posts are no longer allowed on other social media sites.