Becoming an Outdoors-Woman outings beginning

MARQUETTE — The Michigan Department of Natural Resources announced registration is open for the annual February Becoming an Outdoors-Woman winter weekend event, as well as several smaller “Beyond BOW” activities.

The winter weekend, set for Feb. 24-26, 2023, is for women 18 and older who are seeking an opportunity to improve their outdoor skills in a relaxed, noncompetitive atmosphere.

The BOW program is sponsored by the DNR and offers instruction in up to two dozen different types of indoor and outdoor activities, including cross-country skiing, archery, winter camping and shelter building, ice fishing, fly tying, winter biking, wilderness first aid, wood burning, snowshoeing along with several new features, such as wild game preserving and canning.

Instructors provide basic and advanced teaching that is tailored to each participant’s individual ability. The program also includes special evening programs during the weekend.

BOW participants stay and take their classes at the Bay Cliff Health Camp, a universally accessible facility overlooking Lake Superior, which is situated about 30 miles north of Marquette near Big Bay.

Participants will be housed in a dorm-style facility with amenities, including a sauna and hiking trails with access to northern hardwood forests and Lake Superior.

The registration fee includes all food and lodging, as well as most equipment and supplies, except as noted in the registration materials. Scholarships are also available on a limited basis.

In addition to the winter weekend event, three Beyond BOW outings are scheduled for early in 2023, as well as a film event at the Peter White Library in Marquette. These include:

– Do-it-yourself backcountry meals, Monday, Jan. 9, 2023, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Marquette. There’s nothing wrong with classic backcountry freeze-dried meals but have you ever considered making your own meals from items at the grocery store? In this class you can expect to enjoy at least six homemade backcountry meals using a variety of ingredients (a few freeze-dried, too). Expect this to be a hands-on class and to go home with recipes to use in the future.

– Evening snowshoe hike, Thursday, Feb. 9 at 5:30 p.m. EST. Have you always wanted to go snowshoeing in the evening? Well, here’s your chance! Participants will meet at a trailhead about five miles outside of Marquette (must have a Recreation Passport or Michigan Day Pass to park). We will snowshoe two-three miles before returning to our vehicles.

– Evening snowshoe hike, Tuesday, March 7, 2023, at 5:45 p.m. EST. An additional evening snowshoe hike will be offered at this date and time.

– BOW and the Fresh Coast Film Festival, Tuesday, April 4, 2023, 6 p.m. at the Peter White Public Library in Marquette. We’ll be showing a variety of films celebrating women in the outdoors. These are all films from prior years of Marquette’s annual Fresh Coast Film Festival. We will have popcorn available. Bring your own (non-alcoholic) beverage. Registration is not required for this event. However, the capacity at the venue is 125, doors open at 5:30 p.m. EST.

Class information, registration materials and scholarship applications, are available online to print at Michigan.gov/BOW. Payment and registration materials should be sent to the address on the registration paperwork in Newberry.

For more information on the winter BOW program, contact BOW coordinator Michelle Zellar at 517-582-3854, or by e-mail at DNRBOW@michigan.gov.


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