Joe and Nancy

Joe and Nancy
Our Home on Wheels (Click on image above for our web albums.)

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Calgary Stampede Rodeo (2)

This a pic of a painting inside the Glenbow Museum.  This blog will be a continuation from yesterday as I had too many photos for one blog.  So, here we go.  Hang on!
This guy was incredible.
These cowboys are tough...but they do it for a living, most of them that is, so they have to be tough.
I don't know why they even bother wearing their hats, because they never keep them on.
After a successful ride, the dismount is very important.  You can just fall/jump off, but you then run the risk of being kicked by an angry bronco.  The cowboys provide a much safer, but terribly coordinated means of escaping the raging bronco.
Ride 'em hard cowboy...
...and make a hasty escape when you can safely do so, and not wait for help from the cowboys...
OK, enough is enough...get over there in that gate, NOW!
Time for a little grooming...
Even the cowgals have their events:  Barrel Racing!  And they are fast.
Last barrel and headed for the finish line...
And now for the most dangerous of all the events, at least from my perspective.  These raging bulls are not happy to be here first, and second, they certainly aren't happy to the flank strap buckled around their groin area and the weight of the cowboy on his back. 
Now, get away as fast as can...
From Wiki:  Despite what you hear from certain 'animal rights' activists, this strap does not induce pain, it works off of pressure, just like a lead chain for a dog or a bit in a saddle horses mouth. In fact the flank strap is tightened in the same way you cinch a girth on a riding saddle, except that the flank has a quick release. Nothing is done to intentionally hurt the bucking stock.

This includes binding of testicles (a popular lie spread by certain groups against rodeo), drugging, beating, burning, etc.

After the ride is over the bull usually stops bucking, as the riders weight is gone.
This cowboy was seriously injured after being thrown into the gate post of the release stall.  Below, about a half second after I snapped the pic, the 2000 pound bull stomped on the cowboy's upper leg, and we found out the next day he suffered two broken bones and a sore back & neck.  Ya think?!  Hello!  These are "Raging Bulls".
And above the cowboy is hauled off to an awaiting EMT trip to the hospital.  Below, a cowboy jumps up on the fence away from a charging bull.
It's just amazing to me how powerful these animals really are!
Note the helpers/distractors in the background.  These cowboys are always close by to assist and distract the attention of the bull in case the fallen cowboy is hurt, pinned or otherwise unable to move out of harm's way fast enough.  They are very important to the safety of the vulnerable riders.
And there is another distractor in the midst of the action.  This cowboy, as well as the other two, are fleet afoot and usually can scurry away from the charging bull.  However, in the event this guy can't, he can jump headfirst, in a hurry, into the barrel is somewhat safe from serious injury in this temporary refuge.  Here, he does a little barrel dancing to the music while another bull rider is mounting.
This big fellow wants a piece of something or somebody, he doesn't care.  The cowboy isn't hanging around too be the "somebody", nor is his horse. 
Nor does this guy...
Oh this is going to hurt...
Three person (kids) team pony races.  Fastest team to mount a rider, wins!  Now, will you hold still little fella?  All we want to do is ride for two seconds...
These poor girls...but they finally got a rider, as well as the older kids team...
Now that the pony races are over, it's the job of this little cowboy, on a little pony, of course, to round up the ponies into the proper gate for return to the stable.  HA!  Easier said than done.  It must have taken ten minutes for him, with a little help ( actually a lot of help) to get the critters pointed to he right gate.
It was too funny!
Here are a couple of pics Nancy shot of me & the tower.  Straight down 623 feet, thru the glass beneath my feet.
And here we are, after leaving the Stampede Rodeo grounds, we walked to the town center, about five blocks away and had some dinner at an Irish pub with our fellow caravan-ers, Cliff & Gloria and Sammy & Chuck.  Down the street is one of the C-Trains approaching. 
So ends the fun and excitement at the rodeo.  It was a long day, but one we will not soon forget.  Part of the fun is sharing with new friends and enjoying the camaraderie we have in common with each other. So, from our temporary RV park at McMahon Stadium on a pretty Saturday morning, RVing Beach Bums.