Day of the Cowboy


Since the untamed landscapes of the Old West, cowboys have symbolized more than just a profession. They were the epitome of resilience, tenacity, and the unbreakable spirit that conquered adversity in pursuit of the American dream, and they continue to uphold that legacy to this very day. To gain a deeper understanding of what truly makes a cowboy, Tru Western asked two real-life cowboys to define the essence of their unique way of life.

"A cowboy is a man that is as hard as a man can be but also has as soft of a heart that you will ever meet. Someone who wakes up before sunrise and tends to animals all day. A man who is Godly and patriotic. A man with an unselfish desire to put his neighbor's needs before his own. A man that takes pride in his appearance, worn-out jeans a denim shirt but most importantly his cowboy hat. You can tell a cowboy’s story by his hat."

-Jess Pope, 2022 World Champion Bareback Rider

"I am a 61-year-old cowboy, and a cowboy just takes care of cattle. In my world, if I can stay horseback out in the country for 3-4 days a week and tend to cattle, I am staying true to being a cowboy. It doesn’t matter what title people give you, Ranch manager, ranch hand, or cowhand, if you are taking care of cattle, you are a cowboy. There isn’t much glamour in what we do, but the cowboys will see the glamour in it. I try to keep it as cowboy as I can, being on horseback every day and staying with some of the traditional techniques."

-Mark Henderson, Lifelong Cowboy

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