Weatherford Democrat

Farm & Ranch

March 9, 2010

Cowboy ingenuity

WEATHERFORD — Baxter Black, Syndicated Columnist

Cowboys are nothing if not ingenious. It takes that sort of out-of-the-box mentality to allow them to solve the myriad of problems that arise when you combine horse, cow and rope! In the northeastern Montana country, Jim and Norvell (aliases) were backtracking one fall after the gather. By noon they cut the fresh sign of a bull.

A good cowboy can distinguish bull tracks. It’s like comparing an elephant’s foot to a crow’s foot. They spotted him out in the open and eased up on him. He was a short-tempered, hostile, territorial, man-eating ruler of the range. Sometimes driving a bull toward civilization is like pushing a bale of straw through a net wire fence! The further our cowboys went zig-zagging from juniper copse to rocky ridge to slippery cut bank, the madder he got!

In a move worthy of a military strategist, the bull dove into a wash thick with choke cherries, box elder and buffalo berries ... and disappeared! Our brave cowboys dove in after him as the brush tore at their down jackets and slashed their faces. After ten minutes of following the bull through this Montana version of a corn maze, they regrouped.

Had they been army soldiers they would have called in an air strike but ... using their cunning, they decided to build a trap. In one narrow cow tunnel they draped a loop across the path and tied the standing end of the rope to a box elder trunk. Eureka! On the first pass through the trap they caught him! Then a second rope was put around his neck and tied to a trunk 15 feet further down the trail. The first loop was then untied and leap frogged past the second. Five more jumps brought the bull within sight of the clearing where our imaginative vaqueros intended to back the trailer and load him.

Jim, now afoot, managed to loop the bull’s head for the last leap-frog. By now the bull was frothing, breathing like a steam engine and wild-eyed. Jim dropped to his hands and knees scuttling toward the final tying spot when he heard the bull bellow, the sound of thundering hooves, and branches breaking! The earth trembled. Jim didn’t look back.

The impact put him in orbit! He was catapulted from the thicket like a monkey shot out of a cannon! To his everlasting good fortune, just as the bull’s poll hit Jim’s hip pocket, the rope came tight! The bull crashed and flipped. Jim hit the ground minus one boot and the left sleeve of his jacket. His hat was down over his ears.

Not exactly out of the Beef Quality Assurance manual for handling cattle. Although I’d like to see it included ... fully illustrated!


Black may be reached at e-mail Columns submitted to The Weatherford Democrat by guest writers reflect the opinions of the writer and in no way reflect the beliefs or opinions of The Weatherford Democrat.

Text Only
Farm & Ranch
  • Cattle Raisers host ranch gathering in Decatur

    FORT WORTH — Come join the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA) for a ranch gathering Thursday, at the Wise County Sheriff’s Posse Arena in Decatur. The gathering will begin at 6 p.m. with registration followed by a beef dinner and presentations.

    July 18, 2011

  • Katrina’s good sports

    In the fall of 2008, before the election, as the recession crashed down around us I gave up on politics.

    March 30, 2010

  • Planned grazing course with Kirk Gadzia this April in Fort Worth

    FORT WORTH — Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers and Holistic Management Texas team up to offer a new “Planned Grazing” course at the Will Rogers Memorial Center April 21-25.
    The emphasis for this five-day course will be on grazing planning, but instructor Kirk Gadzia will cover rangeland monitoring, financial planning and land planning as well. The content will be relevant to both managerial and operational level employees, with varying levels of formal education. There will be a lands-on Learning aspect if weather permits. Class runs from 8am to 4:15pm each day.

    March 16, 2010

  • One more for the tourists

    Moira and Clive, British tourists, had taken in the Arkansas attractions of Eureka Springs, the Chuck Wagon races in Clinton, the sale barn in Green Forest, and now found themselves in Fort Smith for the Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association Trail Drive.

    March 16, 2010

  • Cowboy ingenuity

    Cowboys are nothing if not ingenious. It takes that sort of out-of-the-box mentality to allow them to solve the myriad of problems that arise when you combine horse, cow and rope!

    March 9, 2010

  • Local wins at San Antonio Stock Show

    SAN ANTONIO — The Junior Market AOB Steer Show was held Feb. 19, at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo.
    Taylor Cody won the honor of Breed Champion AOB with her 1334 pound steer.

    March 2, 2010

  • Olympic distraction

    You know the inmates have taken over the asylum when you’re turning to PETA as the voice of reason! These are the animal rights extremists who compared eating chicken to the Holocaust, compared the murdering cannibal Jeffery Daumer to butchering hogs, and once proclaimed that it would be great if Foot and Mouth Disease infected animals in the U.S.

    March 2, 2010

  • Scholarships awarded to Parker County youth

    SAN ANTONIO — Cade Hansma and Alannah Chalmers of Weatherford, and Jens Rudibaugh of Poolville, were the recipients of scholarships from the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo at this year’s horse and llama shows.

    March 2, 2010

  • Jake working overtime

    In an effort to make managing the 20 section ranch more efficient, the boss bought Jake a Ranger, a four-wheel drive muscle car ATV.

    February 23, 2010

  • Local student wins at Fort Worth Stock Show

    FORT WORTH — Dylan Mask, a 4-H member from Weatherford, exhibited a First Place Medium Weight Hampshire Barrow in the Junior Barrow Show at the 2010 legendary Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo Feb. 4. J

    February 16, 2010

Must Read
Top News
House Ads
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue