We were in Encampment last weekend for the ranch rodeo. The guys got second in two events, so we’re doing good! Since I don’t like to take pictures during the rodeo (I swear it’s a jinx), I was really excited when we found some on Facebook!
These ones are from Steamboat–photo credit to Erin Christine Photography.
Decky sorting out their cow for the trailer loading. The announcer yells out a number that thye have to sort out. They rope it by the head, load it into the trailer, shut the gate, load two horses and then all the guys have to run and get in the pickup.
LLoading her into the trailer.
Decky’s horse, Tuffy, is NOT a fan of town or of other horses sometimes.
Bert riding his bronc! The rules are “Ride As Ride Can,” you just have to use a regular ranch saddle (rodeo saddle bronc riders use a special saddle), you can’t tie yourself to your stirrups or do anything cheat-y like that. You get extra points if you do something showy, like take your hat off mid-ride and fan the horse.
“First he went up, and then he went down!” “Bert, I think that’s about right. But there was a sort of jump in the middle…”
These are from last weekend in Encampment–don’t their shirts look snazzy? The sorority girl in me just loves these guys being matchy-matchy. Just wait until they’re
monogrammed embroidered! Photo credit for these goes to Pam Meyer.
Wild Cow Milking! Decky’s mugging (holding the head), Randy and Bert are on the tail and Todd has her roped around the head. There’s one designated roper (Todd) who catches the cow, and then the guys have to hold her still (hence the mugging and tailing) while the milker (Bert–see the beer bottle?) has to milk her. Then, they have to get the rope off of her and the milker has to run to the judge, who stands in a chalk circle, before time stops. The judge makes sure there’s milk in the bottle to confirm it’s a valid affair. Cow milking is my FAVORITE.
Someone always ends up on the ground. Usually more than one someone! Run, Bert, run!
This is a cool shot of Decky catching a steer during the Stray Gathering. During that event, the boys are in teams of two, and they each have to head and heel a steer/heifer, tie it up, and it has to stay tied for six seconds. They would do this in real life if they have a cow who won’t come back to the right pasture, or who is a little crazy and needs to be put somewhere else–they’ll head and heel her, tie her down and then go and get the trailer to take her where she needs to be. Or, sometimes they tie down cows/bulls if they’re big and need to be doctored outside, or if the bull is particularly ornery.
Other events include team sorting (their best event), where there’s a herd of 12-15 steers/heifers, each with numbers, and they have to sort out five in a row, in sequence, one at a time, starting with the number the announcer calls out. The whole herd has to stay at one end of the arena, and if one crosses the chalk boundary who isn’t in the right order, the team gets a no-time. There’s also branding, where they have to rope and drag calves out of a herd and “brand” them, and steer doctoring, which is a lot like stray gathering except there’s usually only one steer, and they have to tie it and “doctor” it by putting a paint stick mark on its head (we use paint sticks to show when something has been given a shot so their treatment record is easier to track, and you know if something has been given a shot recently). Each rodeo is usually four events, plus a bronc riding, and so there’s different events at each rodeo.
That’s all for today–the guys have so much fun at these rodeos (me too!) that they’re hoping to do one more, either in Wyoming or Oklahoma, at the beginning of September. The more practice they get, the better they’ll be, and someday maybe they’ll make it to the world finals in Amarillo! That would be so cool :)