Home of the Champions

Coinciding with Red Lodge’s three day Independence day celebration is the annual “Home of the Champions Rodeo. Red Lodge is historically known for being home to some of the rodeo greats–and has hosted this particular show for 88 years.

The stands are packed with both locals and visitors for this home town rodeo.

Children and their parents, audience members young and old, gather here after purchasing fried oreos and “6 packs” of beer (conveniently packaged loosely in grocery bags) to witness cowboys get bucked off bulls and horses and rope cattle. There is banter between the announcer and the rodeo clown who performs stunts in between main events.

The rodeo clown jumps through a ring of fire on a car made out of a bathtub.
Cowboys attempt to quickly rope a calf.

Red Lodge’s rodeo is unique and clearly important to the community and draws participants from all over North America. An event that really has at least a little something for everyone(even if that’s just witnessing little kids ride around on sheep during mutton busting)–you really can’t go wrong with a good old fashioned western rodeo.

The Rodeo

The Ennis, Montana pen sorting competition at the Ennis rodeo grounds. This event drew hundreds of people to the grounds to watch and cheer on those participating.

Dan getting ready to compete in the Rodeo competition

Pen sorting is the sorting of cattle moving them one at a time from one pen to the other. The idea is to mark a specific cow you want to heard into the other pen. Once selected you charge at the cow and attempt to separate it from the group and move it into the smaller cage.

Leather saddles
Horse about to compete

Below are images of the men and women competing to get the cattle from one pen to the other as soon as possible. Everyone works in teams of two. The goal is to get all of the cattle into the smaller pen one by one the fastest.

Woman attempting to block the wrong number cattle from getting into the pen
Man in deep concentration
Men in action
The cattle
Woman getting ready to charge the cows
Singling out the brown cow
Attempting to break up the group

The Rodeo comes to Gardiner.

booth
The community of Gardiner, travelers and Electric peak all came out to watch the Annual Gardiner Rodeo…
The Gardiner Upper Yellowstone Round Up is held annual every late June, In Jim Duffy Arena.
The Gardiner, Upper Yellowstone Round Up is held annually every late June, In Jim Duffy Arena.
rodeo_clown
The ring leader of the rodeo…

The whole town is a buzz for the event that brings the local community and travelers together. Gardiner, Montana is a western town with western values, these aspects are shared in the tradition of Rodeo. Passing on the tradition to the next generation…

next_generagtion2

The next generation...
The next generation…
  • The rodeo has many events to showcase: bare back bronc riding, Bull Riding, Calf Roping, Cowgirl’s Barrel Racing, Cowgirl’s Breakaway Roping, Junior Barrel Racing, Junior Breakaway, Saddle Bronc Riding, Steer Wrestling, and Team roping to name a few…
    Bronc Rider...
    Bronc Rider…
    Bull Rider...
    Bull Rider…
    Barrel Racer...
    Barrel Racer…
    Team calf ropers...
    Team calf ropers…

    But the event that the next generation and everyone looks forward to is chasing the cash cow.

    Youngsters chasing the cash cow...
    Youngsters chasing the cash cow…

    rodeo_horses

    The next Generation...
    The next Generation…