Rodeo schools, stupid human tricks and atta boys
There’s a lot of country to cover this week, so I’ll just hit a lope and get it done.
First off, the 20th Annual South Dakota Horse Fair is coming up March 19-21 at the W.H. Lyon Fairgrounds Expo Building in Sioux Falls, SD. They’ll have tons of events and clinics going on, so if you want to get inside where the snowbanks aren’t, head for this great show. More info can be had at http://www.sdhorsefair.com.
I want to give a big congrats to the good cowboys and horses that competed in the Ranch Rodeo during the BHSS. Winning the Top Hand Award was Hardy White of Hot Springs, SD. He’s a top pickup man and horse trainer and a genuine, real McCoy hand, so it was well deserved. Winning the Top Horse Award was Tye Hale of White Owl, SD. Tye’s another good cowboy, ranch raised and a tremendous roper, so it’s no wonder that he had a horse under him that could win this award.
I want to nudge those High School Rodeo kids and remind them that calender sales are due and over March 1st, so if you don’t have your five sold by then, you’re out of luck rodeoing this year.
There are so many good rodeo schools and many are coming up this spring. Go to looking a little and you’ll find a school for whatever event you’re working. One good school I want to mention is the 18th Annual Breakaway Roping Clinics with Carole Hollers, Jerry Golliher, and Zeann Golliher. They are March 26-28 and April 1-3. Deposits are due March 15, so call Golliher Quarter Horses at 605-642-5363 or Carole Hollers at 605-347-4228.
Congratulations are in order for Shaun Stroh of Dickinson, ND for winning the Saddle Bronc Riding at the Ft. Worth Stock Show. Atta boy Shaun!
Now for some stupid-human-tricks news: The Government, in its infinite wisdom, wants to spend $42.5 million to buy up land in the eastern part of the country to house the BLM’s ill-managed feral horse problem. They already spend 75-80 percent of their Wild Horse and Burro Program Budget on excess horses held in private feedlots and long term holding facilities. The budget has a $12 million increase over last year’s bloated $64 million budget for a whopping $75.7 million in the 2010 BLM budget. If the government had to put together an operating projection sheet and jump through all the hoops that ranchers and farmers have to secure operating money through the FmHA and federally controlled banks, I’m thinkin’ they would have a little trouble getting the loan from the taxpayers.
What I think needs to happen is the $42.5 million should be spent building humane processing facilities, staffing them and paying USDA inspectors so that these excess horses and burros could actually be doing someone some good somewhere. No long trailer rides as the facilities could be built close to the holding facilities already in existence. I’m full of good ideas, but do Obama’s clueless advisors ever call me? Noooo…
I heard some sad news this morning from Rhonda. Glenn Smith from Texas passed away. He and his lovely wife Anne traveled all over the world taking the Good News of Jesus Christ and salvation to rodeo cowboys, ranchers, and others. He used to make a circle up into the northern plains and he was a beloved minister to many in our region. They had Rodeo Cowboy Ministries and Western World Outreach and I’m sure there are many of their “students” who will continue the good work they did. He was a good’un and will be missed.
As I was driving down the road the other day, I went by a pasture that had a half dozen horses grazing. Several of the mature horses were wearing heavy nylon halters, which scared me, but scarier yet was a weanling/yearling with a heavy nylon halter, plus about 10 feet of halter rope dragging. Horses are creative geniuses when it comes to getting themselves in a pickle without the help of people leaving equine strangulation/pulverization devices on their heads. When a horse gets its head hung up on something, most will fight until they’ve ruined or killed themselves. Not a pretty sight when it’s over. That halter rope the colt was dragging had to make it through trees and an open gate to get to water and feed. If he hung it up on the gate posts, I had a vision of how pretty he would be after that new barbed wire fence and him had mixed it up.
So, if I have stepped on your toes with this, good, because I would hate to have you see just what a wreck it can be when they get hung up. Take those halters off. If you can’t catch him again, work on that in the corral. Better an un-caught horse than a dead one. Many people leave a halter rope dragging on their youngsters to get them to giving to the pull and suchlike, but boy it’s risky just the same, even in the corral.
This makes me think of a story told to me by someone close to me (who shall remain nameless to keep me from getting hurt). He had hurried out in the a.m. darkness to feed his weanlings and discovered that their dragging halter ropes had gotten tangled in a ball and all of them (I think about 10 or so) were hooked together with a frozen knot of rope. Now these youngsters are fairly gentle, but fed up hot and feeling froggy, so this was a dicey situation. Ol’ Tightwad didn’t want to just go to cutting ropes unless he had to, so he started untangling them. The colts were anxious to get their breakfast and rather impatient, but he painstakingly worked on that knot until he had it undone and everyone free. It all turned out okay, but talk about the makings for one wild, cowboy wreck! I need to ask his wife if she has a lot of life insurance on him. Might be a good investment.
Speaking of good investments, start saving your dollars for a Buster McLaury clinic to be held Sept.16-19 at Brad and Beca Andrew’s place near Red Owl, SD. He’ll be doing colt starting, horsemanship and ranch roping, so there will be something for everyone. Call Brad at home at 605-985-5493 or on his cell at 605-515-0088.
We made a big circle and saw a lot of country, so I’ll quit for now. It was great talking to everyone at the Stock Show!
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A pasture or lot with plenty of grass or bedding and windbreak is important when calving in the cold.