Jana Waller

Jana Waller resides in the Bitterroot Valley of Montana where she revels in her passion for hunting and fishing. A bowhunter for 25+ years, Jana has traveled the globe hunting Africa, Alaska, Canada and all over North America. She is a freelance outdoor writer for numerous websites and hunting magazines and has been featured in Bowhunter Magazine, Sports Afield, Bowhunting World, Turkey Country, Predator Xtreme, Mule Deer Foundation Magazine, Petersenʼs Bowhunting, Montana Magazine, Hunting Illustrated, Earned, Lady Hunter, Buckmasters, Bowfisher Magazine, Texas Bowhunterʼs Journal, as well as CNN.com. 

Along with being an ardent conservationist, Jana is dedicated to supporting veteran organizations. She is committed to getting veterans back into the woods and the mountains, featuring many veteranʼs stories of courage and strength on her show Skull Bound TV. Many of Janaʼs painted or beaded skulls are donated every year to raise money for conservation and veteran related organizations. To date, she has personally raised over $45,000 for conservation and veteran causes.



onX: What was one defining moment for you, when onXmaps helped your hunt?

JW: There's are so many defining moments when OnXmaps aided my hunts. We use both the chip and app religiously since most of my hunting is on public land. We literally find new canyons to explore every time we're hunting. 

What is your favorite species to hunt? Why? 

It's nearly impossible for me to name a favorite, but I absolutely love spot and stalk bear hunting in the Spring and archery elk in the Fall. We cover on average 6-8 miles every day we're out and you get to see so much wildlife in both styles of hunting. There are so many great areas to hunt elk and bear in and around the Bitterroot Valley of Montana where we live. 

Who were your biggest inspirations in hunting (personal and industry)? 

When I grew up hunting, 30+ years ago, there were not many women in the industry. Brenda Valentine was the first woman I remember seeing in articles and on TV so I was incredibly inspired by her strength and sense of adventure. She's a pioneer in so many ways. My Dad was also a huge inspiration as he was the one that encouraged me to hunt, or at least shadow him when I was in grade school. I was the only girl in hunting safety class back in 1983, so things were different back then. I started bird hunting in my teens and got into big game hunting when I was a freshman in college. it's so great to see so many younger girls getting into hunting, fishing and the great outdoors. 

Which conservation groups do you belong to/support? 

I'm an active member of six conservation groups. I am a Lifetime Member of NWTF, SCI and Mule Deer Foundation. I am an annual member of the RMEF, Whitetail Society and the NRA. 

What is one of your most memorable hunting trips? 

My DIY hunt to Alaska for moose has to be one of my, all time, favorite hunts. We rented horses to get into the backcountry and had the most incredible adventure. From the amazing scenery and wildlife, to the aspect of getting water from the creek everyday and hunting out of a tent was truly special. 

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In your opinion, which species is the most challenging to hunt? 

The species that has humbled me the most is definitely archery elk. Everything has to go just right and my tags often go un-notched but I absolutely love the challenge. 

What is the scariest situation you’ve ever had in the woods? 

I can honestly say I've never had a seriously scary situation happen to me personally. I often hunt in grizzly territory which definitely keeps you on your toes, but I've never had an uncomfortable situation with them. I often think about how scary it would be to break a leg or get seriously injured in the backcountry, but knock on wood that has never happened. I've had many late night pack outs in the dark that got a little hairy but I always make it back to base camp, or the truck. 

In your own words, what does hunting mean to you? 

Hunting to me is a way of living, not a hobby, or pastime. It's a disconnect from the modern, fast paced world and a reconnect to the past. Our ancestors lived off the land and life was so much harder back then, and hunting makes me feel more connected to my food and to the ways things were for thousands of years. It's a way to immerse myself in the mountains and feel more at peace, all the while exploring and discovering nature and wildlife in ways only hunters understand. Hunting isn't about killing. It's all about living to me.