Stay Warm to Enjoy Hunting More
Editor’s Note: The story of Eva Shockey is a classic example of what happens when two completely opposite worlds collide. Louise Shockey, Eva’s mother, was a professional ballerina, a model and an actress and taught dance. Eva’s dad, Jim Shockey, is one of the most well-known hunters in the world. Many wondered if Eva would be a rough-and tumble hunter like her dad, or would she demonstrate her more-feminine side like her mom? Eva combined the two lifestyles of both her parents. From as far back as Eva can remember she had learned dance, taught dance and competed in dance in her specialty Latin ballroom dancing. She became a dance instructor, as well as a top competitor, after graduation from college.
Also, as far back as she could remember, she had gone on hunts with her dad strictly as an observer. She hunted to spend quality time with her dad. She really didn’t participate in the hunt or the taking of the animals. According to Eva, “I didn’t think that girly-girls took game, until I saw the first ‘Hunger Games’ movie.” When Jim Shockey discovered that his daughter now wanted to participate in hunting, as well as go more with him on the hunts, he was a very proud papa as Eva took to hunting as enthusiastically as a Labrador retriever takes to water. Today, she co-hosts "Jim Shockey's Hunting Adventures" TV show and represents the Shockey family at outdoor trade and consumer shows. “I love to go to the shows, because when I go hunting, I have to be quiet,” Eva mentions. “When I’m at the shows, I get to talk about hunting with hunters from the time the show opens until it closes. So, I have the best of both worlds – the serenity of the woods and the socialization of the shows.” Eva Shockey is the real deal, when it comes to hunting and has been wearing Mossy Oak for the last 3 years. We’re proud to have her and her dad in the Mossy Oak family.
Most of the time, when my dad, Jim Shockey and I are hunting, we wear Mossy Oak Break-Up. I feel I’m a natural woman when I wear Mossy Oak’s patterns, which are earth tones and natural looking. I think Mossy Oak is as much a fashion statement as it is a camouflage pattern to wear hunting. I usually always have on some type of Mossy Oak or have Mossy Oak incorporated in the clothing that I wear wherever I go. I really like the colors, and I really feel like Mossy Oak makes a statement about who I am. I don’t wear a full suit of Mossy Oak camouflage for everyday wear, but I may wear a Mossy Oak jacket, pants or shirt. Or, I may have on sportswear that has Mossy Oak incorporated somewhere on the shirt or the pants.
When my dad and I are hunting in Saskatchewan, Canada, in below-zero weather, this is one of my favorite times to wear Mossy Oak. For outerwear, I get inside a Heater Body Suit that’s much like an oversized sleeping bag and comes in a Mossy Oak pattern. It has a lot of fabric and insulation that creates a barrier against extremely-cold weather.
Sometimes, when my dad and I hunt together, he’ll be hunting in one blind, and I may be hunting in another blind 100- or 200-yards away, but I can see him with my binoculars. However, when he’s inside his Heater Body Suit in Mossy Oak camouflage, I really have to strain to be able to pick him out of the cover, because he vanishes into the brush. I know the deer surely can’t see him. My dad and I wear Mossy Oak camouflage when we hunt all over the world. The Mossy Oak patterns allow us to become invisible in any type of terrain and is one reason we’re so excited about being a part of the Mossy Oak Pro Staff.
Ladies often ask me. “Eva, when you’re hunting in Saskatchewan, how do you stay warm in minus-zero-degree weather?” Staying warm in cold weather is a major concern, not only for me but for other women hunters. At the first of the season, our cameraman went to Saskatchewan to set-up the stands that my dad and I would be hunting in this year. When he got to the camp in Saskatchewan, the temperature was 60 degrees. So, he wore a Mossy Oak camo jacket to blend in with the environment where he was setting-up the blinds. By the time Dad and I arrived at camp in November, the weather was pretty darn cold. Often, when we arrive at camp, we may have 4 feet of snow and subzero weather.
Last year and the year before, where I was hunting in Saskatchewan Canada, the temperature was 30-degrees-below zero. I don’t know why I get colder than the men I hunt with – perhaps it’s just a girl thing. Most of the girls and women I talk to seem to have the same problem. So, here’s what I wear: soft wool long underwear tops and bottoms, as the first base layer; expedition weight Under Armour base layer next; then a fleece jacket and pants for insulation; finally one or two of my jackets, if I can get them on over my fleece. If they don’t fit, I’ll wear one of my dad’s big Mossy Oak coats over the fleece. Also I usually wear an outer layer of Mossy Oak with Windstopper that’s waterproofed. Once I get to my stand, I get inside a Heater Body Suit. Of course, I’ll have chemical hand warmers for my hands and to place at strategic places, if I am still cold. I also use toe warmers.
Staying warm was one of my biggest concerns, when I first started hunting in cold weather. I spent 2 or 3 years working with different layers of clothing, before I finally decided on this system that works for me. Women learning how to dress to stay warm, especially in extremely-cold weather, is very important. If you have to stay in a stand for 10 hours in very-cold weather, and you’re cold and uncomfortable, you won’t be excited about going hunting the next time you get an opportunity. So, if you’re concerned about staying warm in cold weather while hunting, wear lots and lots of layers, and take extra layers of clothes with you, in case you need them.