Decompressing and Horsing Around Post SHOT Show

The past two days I’ve had a bit of after SHOT Show fun. I met Lea somewhere in the middle of the desert, and we headed directly to the Art of the Cowgirl event in Gilbert, Arizona.

The ranchy event is a nice change of scenery after being cooped up in smoke-filled casinos for nearly a week. We watched a bit of liberty work. This is a groundwork type of training. I’m especially impressed with a mustang who’s learning the discipline.

Liberty Work with a mustang.

We admired the pressure and release style of family ranching. This involves a demonstration of gathering, sorting, roping, doctoring and branding techniques, which cause minimal stress on the cattle.

A trick roper showed us her talent and explained the techniques then demonstrated her trick riding on her horse, Apollo.

Trick roping and riding.

We also learned pressure and release techniques when using working dogs. I always admire k9’s focus and dedication when they have a job.

Working Dog seminar.

The finale of our time at Art of the Cowgirl included the Cowgirl Horsemanship finals, which included reining, cutting and roping followed by the Cowgirl Ranch Rodeo finals. A Calcutta was held prior to the events. The skills these ladies have are impressive, to say the least.

Calcutta, Cowgirl Horsemanship and Cowgirl Ranch Rodeo finals.

It’s been a blast, and now I’m home, ready for a good night’s sleep. I’ll be back at it in the morning. — More later!


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Mia Anstine
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Mia Anstine is an outdoor writer, licensed outfitter, hunting guide, keynote speaker, and a range safety officer, firearms instructor, and archery instructor. She is the founder of MAC Outdoors and Host of the MAC Outdoors Podcast. 

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