Women’s participation in hunting and fishing in America is growing rapidly, fueled in large part by their desire for healthy, free-range meat and outdoor activities that can include the whole family.

But women’s participation still lags behind men’s. California Waterfowl’s Becoming an Outdoors-Woman program helps address that deficit with a wide variety of events for novice outdoorswomen in supportive environments, as well as events for women of all experience levels.

For novice events, gear – including firearms – is provided. The camradery happens all on its own!


Women watch a duck-fileting demo

Participants in the Novice Women’s Duck Hunt learn to filet a duck.

Practical skills

A successful hunt or fishing trip is just the beginning; what do you do once you have the fish, duck or wild boar in hand? BOW knows women want answers to that question, so our workshops and hunts place a heavy emphasis on learning how to process and cook game.

We also address issues such as how to choose a shotgun, and where to find women’s outdoor clothing and gear.

Equally important: Participants and instructors stay connected with one another long after the events where they meet, forming a network of hunting and fishing buddies to last a lifetime. For many women, these networks are the hunting family they never had.

You can reach Becoming and Outdoors-Woman Coordinator Sarahbeth Gonsalves at 559-972-3441 or sgonsalves@calwaterfowl.org.



Women’s Shooting Clinic and Sporting Clays (1-day)

The 2018 event has concluded! Check back in January for the 2019 event date.

  • Held each spring at CWA’s Grizzly Ranch in Solano County
  • All experience levels welcome
  • Guns, ammunition, targets, and ear and eye protection are provided
  • Shotgun, rifle and archery taught by trained instructors
  • More experienced shooters can try our challenging clays course (50- or 100-target packages)
  • Includes lunch and wild-game tasting

A shooting instructor helps on the archery range

Women’s Multi-Course Weekend (3-day)

The 2018 event has concluded! Check back in January for the 2019 event date.

This is the workshop that has come to define BOW – a three-day extravaganza of outdoor skills and camaraderie at CWA’s Grizzly Ranch in Solano County. The camp generally includes:

  • Hunter education
  • Fishing
  • Kayaking
  • Boating
  • Archery
  • Firearms
  • Orienteering
  • Leather work
  • Bowhunting certification (required to bowhunt in some states)
  • Canning
  • Wildlife art

Women’s Fly Fishing Retreat (3-day)

The 2018 event has concluded! Check back in January for the 2019 event date.

  • Annual event
  • Held at GreenHorn Creek Guest Ranch in Quincy
  • Gear provided, with an option to purchase your own
  • Learn fly fishing skills
  • Fish some of the best waters in California

Yes, we know they’re men. We’re looking forward to putting women in the picture!

Women’s Halibut and Striper Fishing Trip (1-day) – NEW THIS YEAR! –WAITLISTED

  • California Dawn excursion on San Francisco Bay (launching out of Berkeley Marina)
  • Next trip is June 2, 2018
  • Fishing gear provided
  • Breakfast and lunch provided, including fresh halibut ceviche demo
  • Optional overnight lodging

Get on waitlist

Women’s Pheasant Hunt Weekend – INCLUDES HUNTER ED

  • Held at Birds Landing in Solano County each September
  • Next event is Sept. 29-30, 2018
  • Gear provided
  • Overnight lodging optional
  • Complete hunter ed
  • Get shooting instruction
  • Hunting license included
  • Go on your first hunt


Looking for more Hunter Ed events? Click here.

Women’s Pheasant Hunt (1-day with overnight option)

  • Morning hunt at Hastings Island Hunting Preserve in Solano County
  • Next event is Oct. 13, 2018
  • Mentors/guides provided for novice hunters
  • Lunch included
  • Afternoon trap shoot
  • Dinner at CWA’s nearby Denverton duck club – overnight lodging included

Registration coming soon!

Novice Women’s Duck Hunt (3-day)

  • November Workshop and hunt for already-licensed hunters in the Upper Butte Basin
  • Lodging at Bird Haven/Casa de Patos
  • For women who have done little to no duck hunting
  • Shooting instruction and sessions on duck calling, duck ID, duck plucking, duck processing and duck cooking
  • Hunt in pairs at one of three prestigious clubs: Little Dry Creek Farm, Closed Zone Farms or Mom’s

Registration coming soon!

2018-19 Women’s Waterfowl Hunts – Staten Island

  • All-level general waterfowl hunts for women – one in December, one in January
  • Hunt in pairs across flooded corn fields in stand up blinds
  • Two hunt dates to choose from
  • Food and lodging are included
  • Expert mentors provided for novice hunters
  • Special sandhill crane viewing and talk with each hunt

Registration coming soon!

A hunter poses after a hunt with California Waterfowl.

Two women smile after a hunt with California Waterfowl.

2018-19 Women’s Waterfowl Hunts – Grizzly Ranch and Denverton

  • All-level general waterfowl hunts for women
  • Hunt in singles or pairs in pit blinds across well managed duck ponds
  • Two hunt dates to choose from
  • Food and lodging are included
  • Expert mentors provided for novice hunters
  • All equipment available to borrow

Registration coming soon!