Editor’s Note: This piece, edited and trimmed for length, was published in the Washington Post. But here it is for those of us hitting a paywall and to consider the unedited version. By Maddy Butcher Halfway through a 20-mile ride, I choose to expound confidently […]Read more
Category Archives: reflections
Cowboying as the Antithesis of Yellowstone
Editor’s Note: An edited version of this essay appeared in the Washington Post. Read below for an alternate and expanded piece. By Maddy Butcher Yellowstone’s fourth season opens with livestock agent Kayce Dutton in a shootout. This is silly, of course. But as it happens, […]Read more
Getting Out is Not Enough
Editor’s Note: An abridged version of this opinion piece was published in the Colorado Sun. Two dogs, now gone, showed me how to consider the outdoors. Belle appreciated the landscape as a whole. She stopped, not just at the summit, but to tend to sounds […]Read more
Someone sent me a playlist of dance songs this morning. By eight o’clock, with two cups of tea in me, I was dancing around the kitchen and living room, feeling relaxed and free of cares. The dogs watched. “Who is this woman?” It was different […]Read more
While not typical HighCountryOutsider fare, this post is something I worked on for the Raven Narratives Story Slam of “Dirty Work.” I’m a big fan of producers Tom Yoder and Sarah Syverson, who have encouraged me to reach outside my comfort range. The theme Dirty […]Read more
Riders: how long will we be relevant?
Like any other niche community, us horse owners and riders know what we like. We gravitate to anyone or anything that speaks our language. We can spot each other a mile away. In my neck of the woods, the ‘I get horseback’ uniform is: Long, […]Read more
Ode to Mancos
I was born and raised in Harpswell, Maine. If you swapped out fishermen and lobstermen for farmers and ranchers, you’d have Mancos, Colorado. Like this tiny town, Harpswell has an interesting, sometimes tense, dynamic between natives and transplants. And, if you elevated the Colorado water table by, say, […]Read more
Remember when ‘unplugged’ wasn’t a thing?
Now I see the secret of making the best persons: It is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the earth. Walt Whitman Summertime is my favorite time ‘to grow in the open air.’ Mostly I’ve been camping with my […]Read more
Wild West (Fake) Journalism is Back!
You might think we journalists struggle more than other folks when accusations of “fake news” and “alternative facts” splash across our virtual desktops. That’s because the attack is not just on liberal news outlets but on media and the propagation of information in general. It’s […]Read more
A Quick and Noble End
Since many of us count animals as companions and friends, please allow me to remember Belle and recount how she died this week. You may recall her in another piece here. The Basset hound mutt with a yard-long body and short legs even made it […]Read more