John Rich and Daughter getting ready to round-up the cattle.
I have always been very fascinated with the American West and everything associated with it. So when I was offered the opportunity to visit my friend's ranch and photograph the pre-summer cattle round-up, it was a no-brainer. John's family owns "Jacob Lake Inn" located just on the outskirts of the Grand Canyon's North Rim. It is the home base for the cattle ranch. If you ever visit the Grand Canyon, don't miss out on Jacob Lake Inn's famous cookies or their amazing food!
My goal was to capture something from American History that most of us only see in Movies or read about in books.
For some I would imagine it is hard to believe that people still ride horses and round-up cattle just like they did so long ago.
Once the Cattle were herded into the coral, they were separated for branding and other hygienic necessities.
The cows generally did not like being roped to the ground, as you might imagine. This made for some interesting experiences.
I have never seen someone jump a fence that fast in my entire life.
This particular cow was not in a good mood. It actually had its horn sticking into its head just below its eye and so it was pretty irritated. It was out to hurt the young man you see leaping over this fence.
The very irritated cow again, being very irritated.
The dust was unreal. I went back to my room at the Inn and almost did not recognize myself I was covered in so much dust and dirt. I am glad my cameras are weather sealed because that could have been a disaster.
In the end, the experience left me wanting more. It was weird being there, I felt like I was somehow connecting with the past. The distinctive lines between our modern age and the past seemed to be blurred and at some points almost non-existent.
Keywords: American West, Portraits, Salt Lake City Photographer, Salt Lake City Sports Photographer, Utah Photographer, Utah Sports Photography, cattle ranch, cowboy, cowboy photography
Nice job! Beautiful pictures! Well written!
As a society we have largely lost our connection to big animals and the land. Now days people don't understand the "law of the harvest" as our ancestors did. That is a great loss! There is an old saying, "The outside of a horse is good for he inside of a man!" It is true.
By the way, you might note in your story that while it looks like the cow is under distress, it was for her own good and now she is no worse for the wear. Her horn that was puncturing her eye socket and skull, which left unattended would have eventually led to her death, was cut off. Now after a rather dangerous effort by the cowboys, she feels a lot better. Real cowboys care for their cattle! And that is what you saw.
I love your note-wor-thy project! I knew you were a talented photographer but I didn't realize what a great writer you are. I can't wait to see more!
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