Home of the Western Spirit
Web Site Design
Jeff Hanson Saddles
Pistol River Saddlery
Cowboy Gear - Tips and Tricks:
Tying Your Rope Up
Buckaroo Scarf Knot
Cowboy Night Latch
Cut-away saddle pad
Center-firing your Cinch
Pack Saddle Latigo Safety Knot
Tire Changer Aid
No Roll Saddle Stand
Wade Saddle History
Don Howe Working Cowboy Saddle Maker
Hamley and Co.
E.F. Blanchard Spurs
How to tell authentic Blanchard spurs.
More Blanchard Spurs
Garcia Bits and Spurs
Prison Made Spurs
Adolph Bayers Spurs
Cowboy Poetry by Gary Vorhes
Charlotte Thompson Poetry
Mike Meaux Poetry
Audrey Hankins Poetry
Carole Jarvis Poetry
Dogs and Animals Photos
Reminders of the Past Photos
Ready to Rodeo
Books by Dale Woolley
Diamond Z English Shire Horses
5 Tips for Traveling
Harnessing A Team
The Dameles and the Curly Horse
Rounding Up Wild Horses
Extreme Horse Camping
First Pull on the Latigo
Twister Heller Starts a Colt
Cowboy Training Halter
Cowboy & Colt Clinic
Using the McCarty
Teach a Horse to Stand
Cowboy Draw Reins
Tying War Knots
Tail Knot for Pack Horses
Deworming Your Horse
Safe Fall Trail Riding
How to buy a mule
Reno Rodeo Cattle Drive
Chase Hawks Rodeo
Bronc Riding the Old West Way
WRCA Ranch Rodeo Finals 2009
Western States Ranch Rodeo Association National Finals 2012
WSRRA Finals 2011
28th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering
2011 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering
2010 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering
Grubbing Hoe Ranch
Trevor and Emily Fuhriman
Land of Extremes
Jersey Valley Cattle Co
Diamond Tail Ranch
Gang Ranch of British Columbia
TS Ranch of Nevada
When the TS Ran a Wagon
Crystal Rose Cow Dog College
Wyoming Honor Farm Inmate/Wild-Horse Program
Portrait of a Cowboy
DK Cowboy Stories: A Prophet With Antlers
Spendin’ Time at Cow Camps
Slewfoot The Black Bear
Mooney's Stories - The Circle A Ranch of Nevada
Cotton the Horse
Wigwam, the Wrangle Horse
Spanish Ranch 1
Spanish Ranch 2
Spanish Ranch 3
Spanish Ranch 4
Miss Beymer’s Boyfriend by Bill Mooney
Recollections by Bill Mooney
Branding out of a Rodear on the Spanish Ranch, Part 1
Branding out of a Rodear on the Spanish Ranch, Part 2
Hero Cattle Dogs
Dave’s Summer Adventure
Fire-Proofing the Range
Tons of Silver
Andrae - Marvel Nevada Oral Histories
Texas 6666 Ranch Historical Photos
Gerlach Cattle Company 1906
Cattle Roundup Photos
Cowboy Historic Photos
Flying M Ranch Women's Team
In the Big Nevada Desert
Mike Laughlin, Cowboy
Ian Tyson The Legend
Bryan Neubert Cowboy Clinician
Wiley Carroll - Legendary Hunter
The People & The Land
Saddles and Gear
Cowboys of the World
Cowboys of the Dark Continent
The Day it Nearly All Ended
In the Big
by Ty Fowler
In the big
desert, where the
Lives a legend in that country, with countless other ties.
Was 'dropped' in
, and left there when of age,
He just quit that country, and sorta slipped right off the page.
'Never did go back' he said, 'nothin' left behind for me',
'My hearts out in
, and it's there I want to be.'
His trip there took it's time though, made other tracks of course.
Years of other work was done first, before his livin' from the horse.
Took time in the Great Northwest, hunting varmints from a plane,
Cause the stockmen needed help, shooting coyotes was his game.
Made many friends, and lived his life only on his terms.
Didn't tend to tiptoe around, and that made some people squirm.
He had some kids and did a lot, adventures did abound.
Life didn't tend to be too slow, when Mike was close around.
He found his 'partner made for life', selling insurance door to door.
He asked her out, she said "NO!", he nearly hit the floor.
But he kept it up, she saw the light, he got a final "Yes",
Grab your hat and boots my dear, the future will be your best.
They headed east to
, 'come wrangle dudes with me',
Worked more horses there in the hills, than most will ever see.
She named them all, knew by sight, each horse has his own face.
A job so big that few could do, it seemed they'd found their place.
But they left there, was more to see, more things yet left to do.
for a time, a circle cut, and other places too.
A writing job, and photos too, at many ranches in the west.
It fit them well, they knew the life, they always did their best.
called, they answered it, worked cattle every day,
A hardened cowboy wrote the checks, they really earned their pay.
Calves to brand, and stock to work, it was a cowboy's game.
They loved the life, and loved to ride, no day was ever plain.
But all the while they had a plan, they knew where they should be.
So they packed 'er up and headed west, come back 'home' with me.
range was calling them, they knew their place was there.
It was always where they belonged, was where they were a 'pair'.
They pack in salt, and work wild cows, way high up in the hills,
They'll never quit, it gives them joy, and they are at it still.
But the winter snows do push them south, where snow is pretty rare.
To Fallon where it stays real nice, Mike has a riding job down there.
At "Lightning Jack's", to ride the pens, and take cows into the ring,
Jack needed help, and Mike can't sit, yes cow work is his 'thing'.
Most guys by then have settled down, and found a slower pace,
But he can't think of doing that, you'd think he's in a race.
A useful life should be our goal, and his for sure has been,
With lots of friends and stories told, and more before the end.
A lucky man to live his life, and make his living off a horse.
Some bad ones sure, but on the list, some great ones, too, of course.
Like Fox and Brownie, Coyote too, and countless other rides.
A day outside and horseback, is worth ten other days inside.
I asked one day if he would stop, and look for calmer things to do,
Not a chance in hell, was what he said, I'm not even close to being through.
It's an 'ego' thing he told me, to draw a paycheck from horseback.
But more than that, it's his life, he's made so many tracks.
I hope someday that when I am done, I have something to say,
Of what I have done with my own life, that shows I made my way.
Like he has done, and done it well, I know he'd never trade.
He loves the life, and always will, till his last card is played.
Ty's tribute was written for Mike Laughlin
Cowboy Showcase e-mail
Web site design by
Photos by Lee Raine unless otherwise noted.
Copyright © 2000-2017 by Lee Raine. All rights reserved.
External links are listed as a convenience. We take no responsibility and give no guarantees or warranties, implied or otherwise, for content or accuracy of third-party sites. External sites are not necessarily endorsed by Cowboy Showcase.