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Ruth Cusack named winner of Prois Award

A very hearty congratulations to your new 2012 Prois Award Recipient..RUTH CUSACK! We have absolutely no doubt that Ruth will be a great representative for Prois and the women in the hunting industry! She is amazing!! Congratulations, Ruth!

Ruth Cusack

Photo courtesy of Prois Hunting Apparel

Each and every contestant in this award is quite simply amazing in their own rights and we want to congratulate each of them for making it to the top 12. We also have to say that we are so proud of the grace and dignity with which each of these ladies has conducted themselves during this contest. They are all amazing and we are humbled to have learned more about each of them.

This is the second year Prois Hunting Apparel for Women has held the prestigious Prois Award, which was created to honor the amazing huntresses out there who also commit their time and efforts to conservation, management and community education. This year, over 80 entries were submitted and the top 12 finalists were chosen by our elite panel of judges who include Ron Spomer, Diana Rupp, Guy Eastman, Julie Golob, Craig Boddington, Tracy Barnes, Jim Zumbo, Lanny Barnes and Kirstie Pike. The top 12 finalists worked furiously to obtain online votes and the online voting ceased at midnight December 16th. At that time, Prois added the cumulative judge scores to the online scores to determine the winner.

Ruth will win an amazing prize package including a 2 species hunt in Namibia with Mogwadiri Hunting Safaris, gear package from Prois Hunting Apparel for Women, firearm by Weatherby, Heartbreaker Bow from Bowtech, bow rest from Rip Cord, Optics by Swarovski, knives from Buck Knives, arrows/broadheads/logowear from Shoot Like A Girl, scent-free products by Her Camo Shop, customized journal by Hunter Hills Journals, shooting sticks from BOG, European mount racks from Skullhooker, boots from Zamberlan and high altitude drinks from Acli-Mate! Whew.

Ruth will also be flown out to attend the 2013 SHOT Show press conference which will introduce her to the industry media.

Ruth Cusack’s winning essay:

Security is mostly a superstition.  It does not exist in nature…. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing ~Helen Keller

I grew up in a small rural town in Iowa.  I was a fearless tomboy and I spent most of my time exploring the woods and farmlands surrounding my home.  I always wanted to see what was beyond the next hill. It was not until later in life when I discovered my true destiny and started my journey to become a Huntress.  I was 30 years old when I took my hunters safety course and began by hunting small game and whitetail, but I knew that there was more and I dreamed of remote wilderness and big game hunting.
When I met my wonderful husband, Louis, I was mesmerized by all his adventures.  He was born in Louisiana and lived in Alaska.  He took me rabbit hunting on our second date.  His passion and stories of remote wilderness hunting fueled our long distance relationship.  It wasn’t very long before I joined him in our great 49th state and we began sharing our quest for adventure both here and abroad.

My core value is deeply embedded in helping those in need. Beans Café (the local soup kitchen) gives us a great opportunity to share our good fortune.  We donate wild game, seafood, warm clothing and our time to them several times a year.  There is nothing more rewarding than sharing our harvest directly to those who really need and truly appreciate it.  I support the Annual Armed Services Combat Fishing Tournament in Seward, Alaska.  I contribute to The Alaska Healing Hearts and I am eager to work with others in our community to begin a women’s chapter.

I believe in promoting wildlife conservation and protecting our natural resources.  I believe in educating our youth and giving them hands on experience in the outdoors.  I also believe that I have the God given right to bear arms and to responsibly hunt and harvest meat for my family.  This is why I am a member and strong supporter of The Safari Club International.

My passion is the outdoors.  Most of my hunts are self guided remote wilderness hunting for Alaskan big game animals.  Whether it’s flying into a high alpine lake to hunt late season mountain goats on Kodiak Island, battling the elements on the Alaska Peninsula hunting coastal brown bear or packing into a river above the Arctic Circle to hunt moose and caribou, I am always ready for the adventure and looking forward to the next opportunity.
Each and every day my thoughts are focused on preparation.  The mountains can be unpredictable and brutal.  Body, mind and equipment must all have to be in top notch condition, whether it’s warm clothes, new gear or adding another 5 pounds to my pack and hitting a local trail to condition for the hunt.  Each day I think, speak and live it.  It’s not about the passion of the hunt – it is about the passion in the huntress.  Hunting is not a hobby, it is who I am.

If I used a single hunt to define me, it would be our remote wilderness moose hunt.  The expedition takes us above the Arctic Circle and over 100 miles from civilization.  It’s a true test of strength, perseverance and planning, stacked up against Mother Nature in all of her glory.  It’s tough, physical and demanding.  The journey starts with a one mile portage of several hundred pounds of food, gear and rafting equipment, and more often than not, ends with up to 1500 additional pounds of meat, capes and antlers.  This all has to be tended, carried, and floated 25 miles on a river that can go from flooding to freezing in what seems like the blink of an eye.  Carrying meat in wolf and bear country is a stark reminder that humans are not always on the top of the food chain.  This hunt tests my will, strengthens my body and warms my soul.  It defines who I am.

I am The Huntress!

~Ruth Cusack

 

 

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    The Women's Outdoor News, aka The WON, features news, reviews and stories about women who are shooting, hunting, fishing and actively engaging in outdoor adventure. With a band of columnists and reviewers, photographers and female reporters, The WON engages its readers through a blog format and we invite you to talk to us. Thank you for reading!