Are there currently or have there been historically orthodox female kabbalists? If not is this a quirk of history or is there a specific reason?
Chabad.org has an article by Yael Levine Katz about three women with connections to Tzfas (Safed) that either were kabbalists, or exhibited kabbalist-like characteristics.
Francesa Sarah mentioned by R' Chaim Vital, was said to have had a maggid, or angelic tutor.
Channah Rochel Werbemacher or "The Maiden of Ludmir" who gathered something of a Chassidic following.
Because the article focuses on Tzfas, it does not include other similar figures. For example Udel, the daughter of the Baal Shem Tov, also become something of a female Rebbe after her father's passing.
Another was Rachel Aberlin, also mentioned by R' Chaim Vital, in the same book as Francesa Sarah.
This page discusses some of these women, as well as an unnamed woman, mentioned as "the daughter of Rav Raphael Anav", who was influential in her community.
Much of the history here seems sparse, and one of the main reasons that they (as well as other female kabbalists), might not be well known is that they don't appear to have authored any books.
With few exceptions, kabbalists are known and remembered because of the works they create. The notable exception would be the Arizal, whose many students' many works did that for him. The more influential their works, the more famous they become, and the more prominently they are remembered by history.
For a more contemporary example I would include Yemima Avital founder of the Yemima school.
for an overview see this paper, particularly starting on page 199 for description of connection to kabbalah.
Today I know of several in Chabad, or with Chabad connections: Shimona Tzukernik, Fraidy Yanover, Esther Segal.