COWBOY CRAIG'S "OREO" Isn't he magnificent! 

Browsing Archive: October, 2010


Posted by Teri Freeman on Sunday, October 31, 2010,
I just spoke to Sam for a few minutes. A kind soul just helping people.  Took a few pics around the place - our horses finally calmed down and started eating.  Going into Belen tomorrow and get some groceries and apparently there is a horse motel just down the street - we'll go down and see if we can buy some hay. In the meantime, we are hooked up to power, water and sewage - wow - did I say it before.....full bars on the internet - I couldn't even update the website this fast at home.  At on...
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Posted by Teri Freeman on Sunday, October 31, 2010,
My friend Rosemary Garcia hooked us up with this wonderful man named Sam that owns a piece of property just outside Mountainair on 70 west.  He operates a non profit organization which I will find out more about - we met Alex, Eli and Marie also and they are very nice. He has a nice little pasture next to a guy who raises thouroughbreds, so we'll talk to him about hay.  This is truly different country.  As soon as I'm done with this, I'll go out and take some pics.  The horses are happy, but ...
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Posted by Teri Freeman on Thursday, October 28, 2010,
It's been a harrowing day - first thing at first light horses were out - then we discovered that our batteries were dead - using the furnace too much while we took a few days off. So we already got off to a bad start - then tiny two lane highway for miles with semis trying to kill us - had to take two panic pills today and never did calm down - then we got lost and had to turn around - what a waste of gas. We think we've found a place in town for a blue flame heater so we don't have to use th...
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Posted by Teri Freeman on Wednesday, October 27, 2010,
WOW! Teri got her first ride in a limo! Little Oreo pulling the limo - went for a ride through Morton - what a smooth ride!  This has been the best camp yet! I will be sad to leave.

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Posted by Teri Freeman on Wednesday, October 27, 2010,

We are at the ranch of Jim & Jeanine Whitehead in Morton TX - He is a wagon master and has some beautiful wagons and horses.  They are booked every weekend.  They are just the sweetest most helpful people. I want to thank them for letting us rest behind their barn for 3 days.  Pics of me on Jim's tractor.  There's Jim & Ron trading stores.  Can you believe that Jane jumped that high up onto the hay.  The chickens are in heaven and won't pay any attention to me anymore.  Ron working on the gen...

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Posted by Teri Freeman on Tuesday, October 26, 2010,

Found Bonnie Dam and pulled off just to find out it was $12 a night, so we turned around and half way down the road, pulled over on to the shoulder with long grass and parked there.  Ron pumped water out of the creek for the horses and the dog romped in the long grass - nice quiet camp, except for the train and no cell or internet service.  We are truly traveling the rural ag route.  Started getting windy the next day and hasn't let up since. We can be reached at  After...

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Posted by Teri Freeman on Tuesday, October 26, 2010,

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Posted by Teri Freeman on Tuesday, October 26, 2010,
Our first camp was in Hardin, Montana - we stayed with Mike Mortenson and his wife. They are very cool, laid back people and were very gracious in offering us there beautiful pasture where we took the day off so we could find a new tire as we had a blow out half way there. Besides, I needed a day off after going through the Livingston Pass. My panic pills didn't work too well that day. Look at Annie Oakley on the dash of the motorhome - they wanted to stay up there while Ron was driving!

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Posted by Teri Freeman on Sunday, October 24, 2010,
Well, there it goes! Look how happy Ron is!                
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Posted by Teri Freeman on Saturday, October 23, 2010,

Well, we've been on the road for a week.  Had a blow out on the horse trailer the first day, so the first chance we had, we bought 4 new tires otherwise on these back roads, we would have blown them all out.  I have a new laptop and still trying to learn it, so haven't figured out the pics yet, but taking lots of pics.  For those of you who don't know, I have a phobia about driving, especially in the mountains and I'm following Ron in my truck - he's pulling the horses with the motorhome.  It...

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Brett Thomas-DeJongh
Big Horn County News

There’s a great scene in the 1939 John Ford movie Stagecoach, where the infamous Ringo Kid, played by John Wayne, offers his awkward version of a proposal to Dallas, an independent, brave and fetching woman.

Handier with a six-shooter than with words, the Ringo Kid tells Dallas, played by Claire Trevor, “… well, maybe I'm takin' a lot for granted, but... I watched you with that baby - that other woman's baby. You looked... well, well I still got a ranch across the border.

There's a nice place - a real nice place... trees... grass... water. There's a cabin half built. A man could live there... and a woman. Will you go?”

The Ringo Kid is a “trees… grass… water” kind of guy. In his frontier world, those are the things a man and a woman need to make a life together. And John Wayne makes you believe it. The movie makes you believe it.

If there’s anyone around these days who is living his life with this set of necessities, he calls himself Ron Dakotah, and he travels the highways and byways of the West aboard a nearly two-ton sheep wagon pulled by four horses.

A slight man in his late sixties, Ron “Dakotah” McGilvery has been on the road for 26 years, he says, and there are indications he may be looking to settle down. For now though, he’s on the road. “I been out 26 years,” he said, “And as long as I can shoe the horses, that’s the important thing.”

He rolled into Hardin Thursday and stayed for a few days at the home of Mike Martinsen, where the Big Horn County News caught up with him.

Logistically speaking, he says his chief concern is keeping his horses fed and watered. Each horse gets a gallon of oats in the morning, and one at night. He buys alfalfa and hay as he goes, and the horses graze when he camps for the night, often not far from the highway. “Most of my camps are in a ditch by the side of the road,” said McGilvery.

Whether he’s camped by the side of the road or on the land of someone he’s met on the road, he strings up a generator-powered electric fence that keeps the horses from wandering off.

His makeshift camps and slow-moving vehicle have landed him in trouble with the law on many occasions. He says he’ll never go back to California because of the way he’s been treated by law enforcement there. “I think it was so unusual,” McGilvery said. “People just couldn’t deal with it.”

He says he follows the law wherever he goes, and that law enforcement in Montana has been helpful. Ouside of Reedpoint, he was stopped by a Montana Highway Patrol officer who he says told him, “I want you to know you are completely legal and there’s no problem. I’m just making sure you are alright.”

This is the attitude that greets him most of the time, and it’s what sustains him. McGilvery is upfront about the fact that he lives by the kindness of strangers who may feed him or give him water for himself and the horses. “The best thing about this is the people I meet,” he said.

He’s says he’s not sure why people respond so well to him. “There’s something about a horse and wagon,” said McGilvery. “It’s not a scam. It’s real life.”

One person who has responded especially well to Ron “Dakotah” McGilvery is Teri Freeman, a woman who runs what she calls “a cowboy store” in Ennis, Mont.

She recently met McGilvery when he was passing through Ennis and her roommate told her she should check out this guy in a sheep wagon. “He’s handsome, he’s got horses, and he’s headed to Texas,” Freeman recalled the roommate saying.

“He said he needed a place for him and his horses, and I have some land.” Freeman said. So he camped at her place, and the two hit it off. “We got to be really good friends,” said Freeman. “Maybe more than that.”

Actually, it’s a good bet that it’s more than that, because not two minutes after saying they might be more than friends, Freeman said, “Nobody has ever touched my soul the way he has, and I’m sixty years old.”

Freeman keeps in contact via cell phone with McGilvery and has set up a Web site, located at, to chronicle his travels. Freeman, who hopes to meet him in Texas this winter, said she’s trying to convince him to settle down in the town of Bandero. “That’s the cowboy capital of the world – they’d love him there.”

For his part, McGilvery, who has been married three times, seems equally smitten with Freeman. “I fell in love with her as soon as I saw her,” he said. She’s kind of a horse gal.”

And for a horse guy like McGilvery who doesn’t need much to get by, that might be enough to build on. Now they just need to find some “grass… trees… water…”


Ron Dakotah in his fringe on the front porch of the Rusty Cowboy

Ron Dakotah pouring a cup of joe in his wagon