Meet Erin Merrill
Dick Cronin Sportsman of the Year 2018
In recognition of her work with Women of the Maine Outdoors and her continuing efforts to get women involved in hunting, fishing and related activities.
About the Author
Growing up, my Dad hunted each fall. My sister and I would come home from school and if there were organs floating in a bowl of water in the refrigerator, then we knew Dad had gotten a deer. I remember going out to the barn at night while he butchered it and I would watch him and talk to him about how and where he had shot it.
In 2002, my Dad let me tag along with him while he went hunting. I was in charge of rattling the antlers. He had me practice a couple of times so I would do it just long enough and with enough intensity to sound legit. When I rattled in my first buck and Dad shot it, I was hooked. In the years that followed, we have built three tree stands and I have two other portable tree seats that I hunt from. I shot my very first deer from the first treehouse that we built.
Dad and I have hunted in every kind of weather (the most fun by far is hunting in the snow!) and have become good hunting partners.
After I was interviewed about what it is like to be a female hunter, I decided to start blogging about hunting and my experiences. I launched And a Strong Cup of Coffee in 2010 to document my hunting excursions with Dad. I write about and feature topics related to the deer and bear populations in Maine, what it is like to be a young female hunter and other adventures in the woods that I may encounter along the way.
I write a monthly column in the Northwoods Sporting Journal called “Women in the Woods” and am a member of the New England Outdoor Writers Association and Outdoor Writers Association of America, serving on their National Affairs and Environment committee. I am also the co-Founder and Chair of the board for Women of the Maine Outdoors, a nonprofit working to help women get the funding needed to attend outdoor educational opportunities.