Our Apache neighbors were on the Creek gathering their Hereford cattle last week. So I figured we would take advantage of having lots of good, Indian cowboys available to catch our last four steers. If anyone can rope wild cattle and drag them into trailers, it is these Apaches. They have plenty of practice with their own wild cattle. Four Apaches came to catch our steers. They caught three and tied them to trees. The fourth was last seen tearing out fences and running like a jackrabbit. We haven’t found him yet.
We had enough daylight to load two of the three in the trailer for shipping to Willcox. The third steer had to stay tied overnight. Daylight I picked up three Apaches and they managed to load the third steer. He was a big one – about 1700 lbs – and down in a rocky creek bottom to boot. It took all three horses to drag him up a steep bank and into the trailer – but they got it done.
Watching the Apaches work cattle is a real treat. They have good horses and ride like they are part of them. And they are fearless. These men will chase a steer or bull down a boulder pile on a STEEP slope and never slow their horses. When they catch a steer, they will either tie him to a tree or trip him and tie his legs like a roping calf. It is a whole different matter tying a big-horned, 1300lb steer’s legs than a 300 lb calf, but they make it look easy. I couldn’t have gotten these steers to the sale without the Indians’ help. Sure is nice to have good neighbors!