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January 18, 2012

I wanna be a cowboy _ specifically a calf roper

Calf ropers competed Wednesday during the PRCA Tie-down Roping Slack competition. Calf ropers of all ages checked out calves, warmed up their horses and sported the tools of their trade before working the arena.

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(Photo by Max Faulkner)

Check out some calf roper culture basics.

Every good calf roper has a strong partner for a horse, which typically has a cool name. Calf roper Blake Huckabee of Center, Texas named his horse, "Booger."  

Calf ropers have cool western sounding names, such as Cheyenne, Stetson, Rhett, Shane or Houston. One participant on Wednesday was named Tuf (that's the Texas spelling).

Calf ropers need rope and nifty rope cans to store it. Rope cans can be utilitarian, but calf ropers have fancy ones often made of hand tooled leather. These cans also display a calf ropers personality with crosses or past wins depicted. 

All calf ropers have a pigging string, or the rope they use to tie calf hooves. They often carry this rope slung over a shoulder. Sometimes you can catch calf ropers twirling the pigging strings. (See photo below of calf roper Cory Solomon of Prairie View, Texas).


It doesn't sound like the Wild West, but calf ropers also carry baby powder. This is to help handle a rope. That is exactly what calf roper Dane Russell is doing in the following photo. 

Cowboy stuff


-Diane Straightshootin'  Smith


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