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

Browsing Archive: May, 2011


Posted by Teri Freeman on Monday, May 30, 2011,
Well, yet another parade for Ron and I here in Bandera - the stagecoach was a big hit - too bad we didn't have 4 up, but don't have the harness yet for it - also don't know if we won our division! We came around that corner and there was a sea of thousands of people - the horses did great!  Our outrider, who by the way was a great help, was Jeannie Beauxbonnes who owns Desert Hearts Cowgirl Club Trail Rides.

After the parade, we went to Jeannie Parker's new Cadillac Cottage for rent for the gr...
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Posted by Teri Freeman on Monday, May 30, 2011,
If you read earlier blogs, you heard about the tragic end of "Annie" our beloved pet chicken that was killed by our boss'es killer rat terrier's - they are now off the property, but not too soon. Anyway, we saved some of annie's eggs and put them under a ranch hen that went to sitting and lo and behold, we have 3 of Annie's kids. Wasn't easy though - the first egg hatched and the ants attacked the mom and baby - killed one baby and the other baby and mom bailed abandoning the eggs, so Ron bro...
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Posted by Teri Freeman on Friday, May 20, 2011,
Twin Elm dude ranch in Bandera puts on the qualifying races for chuckwagons.  I was a bit disappointed because they really werent chuckwagons, but exciting none the less.  Wes Hatch was there with his jailhouse wagon that I did the lettering on.. The Gunslingers of Bandera were there and put on a show.  I can't believe there weren't any accidents cause they were going full out!

On a sad note, Blanco is really sick - he has urinary calculi and can't pee - this is the third time we've had him to...
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Posted by Teri Freeman on Sunday, May 8, 2011,
Check out the new stagecoach! High dollar paint job with all the whistles.  Ron took it to Bandera yesterday and participated in the gunslingers performance - check out - don't know if they've uploaded the video yet or not.

Theres a pic of Jeannie driving her new stagecoach!


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Posted by Teri Freeman on Monday, May 2, 2011,
We were invited to the Half Moon Ranch in Bandera for "Cowboy Camp".  Half Moon is a beautiful facility for boarding, trail rides and stud service. We thought we wouldn't know anyone, but to our delight, we saw alot of friends.  Didn't know that Lew from Bunkhouse Leather could play the guitar!  Wes was there with yet another interesting mule drawn vehicle.

Great food, great music and wonderful people - we can't wait for the next one.


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Posted by Teri Freeman on Monday, May 2, 2011,
Ron couldn't help himself, he just had to hook up the team and take the stagecoach for a spin - he's a natural!  Our boss announced to us that she bought another stagecoach - a Concord 9 seater - looks like we're going to have to use Belgians to pull that one. Now, how to get them and the horses to events.  Can't wait to take the stagecoach downtown Bandera!

Here's a pic of Gypsy relaxing - isn't she precious?  We had a bad scare with blanco - apparently corn chips, raisins and chicken food is...
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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