In honor of Women’s history month and International Women’s Day, I decided I wanted to write about Women in Natural Resources. Natural Resources is the field that includes any resource e natural occurring including water, air, land, vegetation, soils, wildlife, fisheries, fossil fuels, minerals, rocks, and precious metals. This field considers all elements that are the foundation of life on this massive rock hurling through time and space that we named “Earth”. That’s some seriously important field if you ask me.
We get into some wild stuff! While we also offer co-ed trips, we specialize in women’s retreats primarily because we love getting women into the wild of Alaska, away from the husbands, and children, and demands of everyday life. Getting a wild woman on a screaming reel attached to a king salmon is no better feeling. One of the trips we took a group of gals out and they compared catching a king salmon to birthing a child.
I often am asked what it was like being a woman working in the commercial fishing industry. A lot of people are fishing for the horror stories, or validation that it’s not an industry meant for women. On the contrary I have met a lot of women on the ocean that make it their lifestyle. They crew on boats until often they buy their own boats or own it with a supportive husband, raise their babies on the docs. It’s a beautiful life. I even considered it for my own life. However there is also the reality of my experiences.
“The most fundamental prerequisite to exercising the right to take fish is the existence of fish to be taken.” Judge Orrick, United States v. State of Washington, 506 F. Supp. 187, 203 (1980).
An age-old battle has been fought in Alaska for generations, of which, many of us lower 48'ers are not aware. We book our cruise trips, we plan our getaways at a remote lodge, all with one thing in mind, to fill our freezers with that precious commodity that everyone wants a taste of: Alaskan Seafood. The battle I mentioned above is a politically diverse, multi-faceted, and immensely complicated issue between commercial fisherman, charter fisherman, the tourist industry, and our diminishing resources of wild caught Alaskan seafood. I prefer not to get into all the complicated details involved in the Us vs. Them arguments being raised on all sides, but rather, to propose an alternative.