Rodeos And Trail Running

On July 10, 2008, in Uncategorized, by Meghan

Over the Fourth of July, my friends and I went to a local rodeo. Rodeos are the quintessential summer weekend activity in this part of the world, and they are exactly like you see on television with their bull riding, calf roping, barrel racing, occasional interjected comedic act, and more. On this hot, heavy summer evening, we climbed up into a grandstand of seats, perched ourselves amongst a few thousand cowboy hats, belt buckles, and leather boots, and settled in to watch the show.

The rodeo scene was fascinating and entertaining with its boisterous spectators bolstered by beer and whiskey, fringed leather chaps blowing in the wind, gorgeous, athletic horses sweating and ready to run hard, and high school kids sneaking under the grandstands. As we watched the competitions unfold, I couldn’t help but make comparisons between the rodeo and my sport, trail running:

*Cowboys and trail runners both get sponsored.
Cowboys seem to wear button-down, collared shirts, most often in some sort of multi-colored plaid. Sponsored cowboy’s shirts are adorned with sew-on patches advertising their sponsors.

*Rodeo competitors and trail runners both stretch before their sport.
Before a competitor jumps upon a bucking bronco, they stretch pretty thoroughly. This is especially miraculous because both male and female rodeo competitors wear really tight jeans, and how those jeans move to accommodate such stretching is a feat I don’t understand.

*Cowboys and trail runners drink sports drinks.
While trail runners drink everything from Gatorade, to nuun, to Accelerade, to Gu2O, blue-colored Powerade seemed to be the sport drink of choice among the cowboys.

The rodeo ended with a long fireworks display that was equally matched by a powerful thunderstorm containing big, white, fiery bolts of lightning dropping out of the sky. The night’s energy, possibly fueled by one very strong whiskey coke, made me almost want to take up a new sport. Then I remembered that I don’t care for Powerade, that I’m somewhat scared of horses, and that I actually love running around on trails. While rodeos and trail running might have some similarities, I’ll probably stick with trail running.


10 Responses to “Rodeos And Trail Running”

  1. Backofpack says:

    First, I’m pretty sure those are stretch jeans – literally. You know, the kind with spandex in them.

    Second, great minds think alike, although, years apart…

  2. rick says:

    Was it really just one Whiskey Coke, c’mon you can tell us?:) Maybe the glasses are as big as the belt buckles over there?

    These are the wildest animals I saw on July 4th. Here they are again after a few beers. We had to hide the children. It was a lesson for all of us, never let the animals into the beer cooler! No, it wasn’t me.

  3. Danni says:

    I went to a rodeo for the first time last summer to and felt wierdly jealous of the little cowgirls who were able to barrel race and were growing up riding horses. Around these parts many people grew up in the rodeo and some of my bosses even did college rodeo or continue to compete in this type of thing. But I feel kinda sad for the calves in the calf roping — luckily the rodeo I attended saw few actual ropings and a lot of calves running across the arena to the other side where they simply went back into the corral and laid down with the other calves. . . .

  4. Journey to a Centum says:

    It’s not really a local rodeo unless they have goat roping. Now that’s what I call competition! In case you are not familiar with the event the goat is staked at one end of the arena. A cowgirl on her barrel pony takes a running start to the timing line and then covers the 25 yards or so to the goat. The cowgirl then quickly dismounts with lariat in teeth, tackles the goat and hog ties at least three legs. After a while they end up replacing the goat with a fresh one because they are smart enough to just lie down and stop fighting. After two or three Whiskey and Cokes it’s a pretty intense spectator sport.

    These are memories from my time spent in Rifle Colorado when Michelle and I worked in the oil shale industry circa 1979.

  5. Leslie's Keith says:

    Leslie and I enjoy climbing into the stands for another ‘like’ event…same theory…a right of summer…but in our case it’s the annual “Demolition Derby” in Fernie, B.C. Cars and Drivers are ‘Sponsored’…spray paint is the chosen medium…the ‘sports drinks’ are the type usually reserved for spectators, and usually prohibited while driving, (but in this controlled environment, I think there’s a lot of it going on…) The ‘people watching’ is by far the highlight…OK…the flying dirt and crunching metal can be exciting too…

    But afterwards, you really appreciate the serenity of a mountain trail run far away from all of the above!

    Have a great weekend out playing in the woods…


  6. Bob Gentile says:

    Ya’all are crazy out west … all that rodeo, demolitions, goat roping, whiskey drinking.

    I think I will stay on the East, sit on the beach a few cold beers and watch the hot JEAN-less volleyball Babes roll around in the sand 🙂

  7. Meghan says:

    Thanks for the comments, all. Has anyone clicked on Michelle’s link or Rick’s links? Michelle’s blog post seems almost identical to mine, and Rick’s are hilariously PG-13. Great comments!

    Michelle- I’m so glad I’m being compared to your great mind! 😉 Spandex jeans, methinks I should Google this.

    Rick- Oh, Rick, thou not need to ask questions to which you don’t want to know the answers. 🙂 Nice photos, real nice, should have put a warning on those. Mexican children all over the world are now gasping in shock.

    Danni- Yes, many of the calves get away, and go for a trot across the arena as they do. The calves almost looked bored, as in, “Gawd, do we have to sprint away from the cowboys, then lay down and play dead again?”

    Eric- Nice! No, I have not seen any goat roping. And girls do this? I must look into this sport!

    Keith- Demolition derby, so fun! What a way to spend an afternoon. And, I agree, at these events, watching people is as enjoyable as watching the actual event. Thanks and I hope you have a great weekend in the mountains, too!

    Bob- You must come visit and see what we do for yourself! I will, in turn, come watch beach volleyball with you. There are guys playing beach volleyball, too, right? 😉

    Be well, all!

  8. kendrara says:

    Megrodeo, thanks for reminding not to let the summer slip by without going to at least one rodeo. Okay exactly one. Nice post – I know what you mean about imagining yourself having grown up in a totally different world. PS forget the whiskey and cokes. What about the corn dogs? And frozen bananas dipped in chocolate? and elephant ears?

  9. Audrey says:

    I totally want to go to a rodeo!!! I am definitely a country girl at heart….and i love tight jeans (think Kenny Chesney).

  10. JeffO says:

    Lamb wrestling! Kids learning to compete in rodeos! It is so hilarious watching these tikes trying to wrestle sheep as big as them.

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