Lemons wrote a book called the “Cowboy Philosophy” based on his experiences driving cattle across the Rio Grande with his father, and the wisdom he passes on to the next crop of cowfolks. That deep, intergenerational camaraderie is essential to keeping the tradition alive -- if it were left up to TV, every young cowboy would have taken on a profession centered around either law, or order.
“I had to look back and think where did I pick all this up, and I picked up from cowboys being on ranches across the Pecos River up in the Alpine in the mountains,” he says. “I worked on a ranch there and the cowboys up there are like another dad to you.”
That mentorship can be formal as well. Lemons has a unique career combo of a traditional cowboy and a teacher. When he’s not in the classroom, or the “classroom” (as you’d expect, class is often held outdoors), he takes care of his own ranch and grows his own alfalfa and grass hay for his horses and cattle. He even builds his own riding gear.
These days, Schulte trains eight to 10 horses at a time for show competitions and rodeo riders. It takes a lot of work to keep horses in top condition, and many never make it to a competitive level. But for all its demands, Schulte cherishes the art of training horses (and their riders) to be the best they can be.
“It’s an awesome privilege to be with horses every day because they are very, very powerful and incredible animals that have a spirit about them that can be really very comforting or healing or empowering or fun,” she says. “It’s just fun for me to be a leader and a teacher who builds confidence in a person or a horse.”