Dust kicked in the air as cowboys roped in bulls, steers and cows to the cheering of 100 spectators from across Southeastern Wyoming during a hot summer day. All that was needed was some fireworks and it would have been the perfect fourth of July.
Due to the Platte County fire ban, fire works were not allowed this holiday, but teams of cowboys still came together to compete in the annual Glendo Ranch Rodeo for a chance to compete at the Wyoming State Fair Ranch Rodeo, then on to the Nile Rodeo in Billings, Montana.
The teams competed in three timed events; the mad scramble, sort-n-order and the trailer loading, with the total time to complete each event totaled up to name a winner.
The teams of four started out with the mad scramble, a competition to see who can brand a cow, milk a cow and doctor a calf in the lowest amount of time. From there they moved on to the sort-n-order, where they raced to sort a head of cattle.
Finally they finished off with the trailer loading, where teams have to unload their horses from a trailer, herd a cattle into the trailer then put their horse back in before racing and tapping the hood of the truck in the fastest amount of time.
OJ Huxtable, Brayden Huxtable, Bohan Foster and Tom Twiford, also known as The Lodge Poles, beat out the other seven teams with a total time of four minutes and 1.96 seconds for the three events.
Colton Travnicek, Tanner West, Dakota Forkner and Bryce Sturman made up the FCC team and placed second with a time of four minutes and 32 seconds.
Rounding out the top three with a time of five minutes and 19 seconds were the Platte River Boys, consisting of Clay Moore, Cooper Gray, Kyle Gruwell and Brock Hladky.
In-between the adult competitions the rodeo hosted events for children, highlighted by the mutton busting, where small children do their best to hold on to a sheep for dear life as it bucks around the arena. The kids also had the chance to participate in a boot scramble, and were given small prizes from the concession stand once they finished.
The turnout was considerably affected by COVID-19 and the lack of fireworks, but the event was still a success, according to organizer Elaine Daly.
“Usually we will have 150-200 people there,” Daly said. “I’d say we had a few less people because of COVID, but also normally for the fourth of July the other piece behind it is Glendo usually has a massive fireworks show. This year they didn’t because of the fire ban, so that’s another big piece of the equation.
“Considering all of that I think we did good. We had a relatively good turnout, and eight teams competing is pretty typical. We didn’t have trouble finding people to participate, so all in all it was a good year.”
You can see The Lodge Poles compete among a slew of other events at the Wyoming State fair from Saturday, Aug. 8, through Aug. 16.