The COWBOY UP! Podcast

Welcome to the Cowboy Up Podcast.

This is where cowboy H. Alan Day and dude rancher Russell True team-up to talk all things Western. They share adventures from the range, from the seat of a plane’s cockpit, from the back of a horse. (You may wonder how they lived to tell their tales!) And they roundup some darn interesting guests.  Horse lovers, horse trainers, chuckwagon chefs, ranchers, artists, writers, authors, nature lovers, and more. It’s the West now and then.

E3S5 – Meet Jeremy, A 28 Year Old White Stallion Wrangler with 27 Years On A Horse

Dude rancher Russell True and cowboy H. Alan Day team up in Tucson, Arizona to talk all things Western. They’ll share adventures from the range, from the seat of a plane’s cockpit, from the back of a horse. (You may wonder how they lived to tell their tales!) And they’ll have a roundup of guests, Western writers, horse lovers, chuckwagon chefs, ranchers, nature lovers. It’s the West now and then.

E2S5 – America’s favorite cowboy shares his thoughts about the Dude Ranch in today and what the future looks like on Ranches

Sometimes those of us who love to visit the White Stallion Ranch and get to know Russell as a good friend tease him from time to time.

We sometimes say … “Russell is that a real story or is it just a True story.”  And of course in true Russell style he’ll probably smile and say, “Well that’s for you to decide,”

Well today Steve sits down with Russell and helps us start out Season 5 of our show with lots of new stories about the world of Dude and Guest Ranching today.  You see it’s all about having an adventure and getting in touch with your inner cowboy.

E1S5  Franklin: Behind-the-Scenes with Kirk Ellis

Dude rancher Russell True and cowboy H. Alan Day team up in Tucson, Arizona to talk all things Western. They’ll share adventures from the range, from the seat of a plane’s cockpit, from the back of a horse. (You may wonder how they lived to tell their tales!) And they’ll have a roundup of guests, Western writers, horse lovers, chuckwagon chefs, ranchers, nature lovers. It’s the West now and then.

E52S4  Unraveling Equine DNA

Christa Lafayette, the innovative CEO of Etalon Equine Genetics, returns to the podcast, this time with the results of the genetic tests that her company ran on two of Russell True’s horses. He’s learning the results in real time, as are you. Christa shares her insights on how genetic information can enhance breeding programs, improve horse health, and even predict performance traits. Whether you’re a horse lover or a science geek, this episode is an enlightening journey into the genetic blueprint of our equine companions and how genetic research is shaping the future of the horse industry.

E51S4  Guns and Gunslingers

As a kid, Phil Spangenberger became enamored with guns, courtesy of Davy Crockett and television. Now a renowned firearms expert, historian, writer and True West Magazine editor, Phil joins the podcast to share captivating stories and insights from his extensive research and experiences in Western history, firearms and cowboy culture. In addition to doing some of his own shooting, including mounted shooting, Phil also trained actors how to brandish firearms in films. What American guns helped settle the West? What are the differences between a single-action and double-actions guns? Was Charlton Heston or Mel Gibson a better gunslinger? Join this lively cowboy conversation to find out!

E50S4  Pack Your Bags!

Vacations, travels, bucket lists. Sometimes you just have to get away and explore, whether it’s within your state, across the country or on the other side of an ocean. Who better to offer travel tips and suggestions than someone who has visited over 65 countries. Kim Wilkins joins us to talk about what life is like when the travel bug bites you at age six and you end up living in Europe after graduating from college, then eventually become a travel consultant and guide. First stops in a foreign city? How best to explore the Croatian islands? What to pack for that classic Old West adventure at a dude ranch? We gotcha covered in this conversation between Kim the Abundant Traveler and our co-hosts Russell True and Alan Day.  

E49S4 It Began with Bacon

Twenty years ago, two individuals started a company focused on sustainable agricultural and the humane treatment of animals. Over two decades later, that company now employees upward of 100 people, has expanded its products from its original no-sugar-added bacon, and more than ever adheres to its original philosophy. When we learned about Pederson’s Natural Farms, we were so impressed that we invited vice president Neil Dudley to join us. Neil talks about how innovative sustainable agricultural practices can lead to healthier ecosystems, more ethical food production, and a balanced relationship with nature. Whether you’re a farmer, a food enthusiastic, or simply curious about sustainable living, this episode offers valuable insights and inspiration. It may even tweak your appetite! Here’s to good eats and good health—naturally.   

E48S4  Riding the Rails: The Al Harper and American Heritage Railways Story

When the opportunity to purchase a western railroad company dropped in Al Harper’s lap, he was a real estate executive living in Florida. But the opportunity intrigued him, and sooner than later, he became the CEO of American Heritage Railways. As a result of Harper’s passion to preserve and celebrate America’s railroading history, company operations now reach nearly 1,500,000 rail passengers annually on three directly owned railroads and license special events on over 50 additional railroads. No surprise Harper was awarded the True Westerner Award by True West Magazine this past March. Give a listen to this inspiring conversation about heritage, innovation, and love of the rails.

E47S4  Fine Dining with Authentic Foodie, Buffalo Bill Cody

Who better to explore the culinary legacy of William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody than Steve Friesen, the Director of the Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave for over 25 years? Friesen joins us to introduce his newest book, “Galloping Gourmet: Eating and Drinking with Buffalo Bill.” Buffalo Bill’s culinary roots began on the American Plains with simple foods such as cornbread, fried “yellow-legged” chicken, and hardtack. While leading buffalo-hunting expeditions and scouting, he discovered gourmet dining. As his fame increased, so did his desire and opportunities for fine dining; his early show business career allowed him to dine at some of the best restaurants in the country. He then took it upon himself to introduce his diverse cast of employees, which sometimes exceeded 1500 people, to the same fine dining. As one newspaper reporter observed, “Colonel Cody displays no more care about anything than the proper feeding of horse and man.” The “Galloping Gourmet” includes 250 artifacts and historic photos and over 30 annotated period recipes.

This week’s podcast song is “Stories That the Rocks Tell” by singer-songwriter Micki Fuhrman.

E46S4  Behind the Scenes of Dude Ranching with Russell True

What’s it like to grow up on a dude ranch? Few people can answer that question. One of them is Russell True, who grew up on the White Stallion Ranch in Tucson and eventually became owner and manager.  Our newest podcast team member, Steven Clauson, interviews Russell about his experiences as and how dude ranching has evolved over the decades. By the way, Russell was inducted into the Dude Ranch Hall of Fame in January 2024.

In my opinion the world needs more good people and more of the culture of the American West. The world’s fascination with cowboys and the West is for good reason.” – Russell True

E45S4 Trash Talk: For Cowboys, Dudes, and Everyone on Earth

It’s estimated that we consume a credit card of plastic every week. Alarming on one hand, too easy to ignore on the other hand. But we all share the problems of garbage, no matter how we vote or where we live. How pervasive are these problems and can we do anything about them? Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Edward Humes says, you bet we can! The author of the new eye-opening book, “Total Garbage: How We Can Fix Our Waste and Heal Our World,” Humes joins Russell and Alan to highlight what innovative people are doing to help our planet and what we can in our daily lives.

E44S4 The Last Cowboys

It’s a challenging life, cowboying and relying on the range for your living. And if you saddle up regularly in the rodeo circuit, you have one heck of a challenging and busy life. Just ask the Wright family. That’s exactly what Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist John Branch did when he was assigned to write a story about them. Cowboys? Rodeos? Branch, who grew up in the West, was all in. In fact, he turned the New York Times story into a book about the Wrights called the “The Last Cowboys.” He chats with our podcast cowboys about the Wrights, the future of cowboying, and what life is like on the rodeo circuit. Branch also shares a few additional true stories from his newest bestseller, “Sidecountry: Tales of Death and Life from the Back Road of Sports.”

Concluding this episode is Bethany Zill’s version of “Cowboy’s Sweetheart.” Bethany hails from Tucson, AZ, where she also is a videographer and documentarian.

E43S4 The Platte River Raids

It was 1864, and Northern Plains Indians were not pleased with settlers migrating from east to west along the Oregon, Bozeman and Overland Trails. Thus began a series of attacks and robberies on unsuspecting emigrants winding their way along the Platte River. Shots rang out and arrows whizzed as miners, doctors, farmers, families, and war widows rallied their covered wagons together. As historian journalist Janelle Molony relates in her new book “Emigrant Tales of the Platte River Raids,” some of those involved had familiar names – Brown, Boone, Earp, Kelly, Larimer, Ringo, Rousseau and more. She joins Russell an Alan to share some of the eyewitness testimonies of nearly 70 survivors, presented in one accord for the first time in literary history.

And western singer-songwriter Jim Jones shares his song “Rockin’ Chair” from his new album “Storyteller – Tales from the West.”

E42S4 Unbridled Genetics: The Power of Equine DNA Testing

How cool would it be to build your perfect horse down to their DNA? Can it even be done? Christa Lafayette has an answer to that question. The founder and CEO of Etalon Equine Genetics, Christa knows that breeding horses is not only an art but a science — one that lets breeders, as well as all horse lovers, see horses in a new way. Genetic testing can identify potential health risks and prevent disease. It can optimize coat color and performance abilities. Christa joins Russell and Alan to delve into the cutting-edge genetic technologies that go beyond the standard DNA panels required by breed associations, technologies that are revolutionizing the equine industry.

Thank you, Cynthia Keefe, for your musical inspiration at the end of this podcast with the song “Dreaming of Paris,” co-written with Walter Salas and Bonnie Hunt while rafting down the Green River in Utah.

E41S4 Trailblazers: The Story of the Buffalo Soldiers

In this episode, historian and author John Langellier saddles up to the ranch to speak with Russell and Alan about the Buffalo Soldiers, the African American soldiers who served from 1866 into the 20th century.  From their origins in the 9th and 10th Calvary Regiments to their invaluable contributions settling the frontier, John highlights their struggles, triumphs and enduring legacy. A few attended West Point. Others helped develop our national parks. Still others served in foreign countries. Many are buried at Arlington National Cemetery. Give a listen as cowboys and historian uncover the narratives of thse courageous soldiers who paved the way for diversity and equality in the United State military. And be sure to check out John Langellier’s new book “More Work than Glory.”

E40S4  Polo, Ponies, & Players: A Look at the Oldest Equestrian Sport

Believe it or not, polo was first played in Persia, perhaps as early as 6 B.C. or as late as 1 A.D. Originally a training game for the king’s calvary, polo morphed into a game with four riders per side rather than 100 riders per side! The first polo game in the U.S. took place in 1876 in New York. The following year the Westchester Polo Club was formed. Now, polo is played around the country, including the Southwest. Our guests today both play the game. Diego Florez, DVM, a large and small veterinarian located in Scottsdale, AZ, is founder and developer of the Arizona Polo Club, also located in Scottsdale with an outdoor field in Casa Grande. Steven True was on Cornell University’s polo team and now plays in Arizona. Diego and Steven speak with the cowboys about the equestrian game that is becoming increasingly popular and is played by men and women, boys and girls of all ages and riding ability.

Thank you, Greg Hager, for sharing your musical inspiration at the end of this podcast.

E39S4  Meet the Real Gidget!

At age 14, Kathy Zuckerman discovered the surfer culture in Malibu, CA. Soon, this wave-catching teen had earned the nickname “Gidget.” The Hollywood versions of Gidget, played by such stars as Sandra Dee, Sally Field, and Karen Valentine, were loosely based on Zuckerman’s life. But how did that happen? And what brought her to the White Stallion Ranch in Tucson, Arizona years later? The real Gidget chats with Russell about how it all went down.

E38S4  It’s all about preserving the western way of life and the great cowboy tradition. Can we tell you about the DRA?

DRA stands for the Dude Ranch Association which not only preserves the great Dude Ranch and guest ranch businesses in this country, but also topreserve the Western tradition and the cowboy experience … We sometimes say with a smile it may take the western way of life to preserve Western civilization!

So today join the gentlemen Cowboys as they visit with Colleen Hudson as she tells us the story of the Dude Ranch Foundation and how they seek to do to help the young men and women who want to carry on both the business and tradition of this great way of life.

E37S4  Stories of the historic Eaton Ranch – The first ranch for you dudes!

One of my friends has said that deep down almost everybody wants to be a bit of a cowboy. And there are people who are seeking what could be called an adventure, and an adventure is where you’re going to do something new and you’re not quite sure just what’s going to happen to you.

Well it is some of those brave hearts and brave souls who in the early days of the settlement of the west made it possible for those from the east to come out and have a western experience, that was new sometimes even life-changing but also safe and sound.

One of those places was the historic Eaton ranch now under the big sky of Wild Wyoming!

And finishing up with a lamenting song by Carol Markstrom that asks the question that sometimes plagues our spirits and souls.

E36S4  Mystery Writers C. J. Box and Shannon Baker

Acclaimed New York Times award-winning author C.J. Box always delivers a mixture of suspense, the outdoors, and family relationships that are the heart of the Joe Pickett series. And so he does again in THREE-INCH TEETH, the 24thnovel in the Joe Pickett series. In this newest page-turner, Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett faces two different kinds of rampaging beasts—one animal, one human. C. J. chats with Russell and Alan about what inspired this new story about a rogue grizzly bear and an ex-prisoner.

Then, Shannon Baker returns to the podcast to introduce her recently released Kate Fox mystery, BULL’s EYE, once again set in the Sand Hills of Nebraska. When a top bull breeder is mauled to death at a rodeo, Kate quickly realizes that this so-called accident hides a much darker truth. How deep is the corruption? Who will be left standing? Shannon fills Russell and Alan in on what it was like to research and write about a rodeo and what Kate Fox will be up to next.

This week’s song, written and performed by Micki Fuhrman, is “You Oughta See Wyoming.”

  1. J. Box, Shannon Baker, and Micki Fuhrman will all be featured at the Tucson Festival of Books on March 9-10 at the University of Arizona. You can learn more about them in previous episodes of the Cowboy Up Podcast.

E35S4  The Colorful, Fraught History of Deadwood, SD

Historian and South Dakotan Bill Markley may not live in the city of Deadwood, but he makes it a point to visit a several times a year. It’s a town with a remarkable history. Now inhabited by just over 1,000 residents, Deadwood’s population soared to upward of 25,000 during the height of the Black Hills Gold Rush era. Wyatt Earp, Calamity Jane, and Wild Bill Hickok are among some of the renown Old West characters who tread the city’s muddy and crowded streets. In this episode, Markely takes a deep dive into some of Deadwood’s fascinating history, which he also writes about in his book “Wild Bill Hickok and Buffalo Bill Cody: Plainsmen of the Legendary West” and his novel “Deadwood Dead Men.”

A special thank you to western singer-songwriter Greg Hager for sharing his song “Eights and Aces,” a story based on the infamous Dead Man’s Hand card game.

E34S4  From Ghost Bears to a Yellowstone Shipwreck

When journalist Mike Stark learned that giant short-faced bears stalked North America thousands of years ago, he decided to do a deep dive into this enigmatic creature. From the La Brea Tar Pits of Los Angeles to a cornfield in Iowa, the plains of Texas, and even to the far ends of the Artic, Stark retraced the tracks of this beast that on hind legs towered more than ten feet and eventually became extinct. When Stark learned that a ferry shipwrecked in Yellowstone Lake in the winter of 1906, he went into research mode and dug into another fascinating story. Now the Creative Director at the Center for Biological Diversity in Tucson, Mike Stark joins Russell and Alan to talk about his explorations and his books “Chasing the Ghost Bear,” “Wrecked in Yellowstone,” and his new novel “The Derelict Light.”

A special thank you to western singer-songwriter Jim Jones for sharing his song, “The Queen is Dead,” a story about a bear. 

E33S4  The Cowboy Way

Ranches can be dangerous places. Unpredictable livestock. Complex machinery. Extreme weather. None of that deterred David McCumber from dedicating a year of his life as a ranch hand up in Montana, even though he had never worked on a ranch. Those twelve months ended up being filled with adventures, lessons and more, enough to fill a book and get it published. Now the managing editor of the Arizona Daily Star newspaper, David joins Russell and Alan to talk about the year he spent in cowboy boots and his book “The Cowboy Way: Seasons of a Montana Ranch.”

E32S4  On the Road with Ben Goldfarb

You probably don’t think much about them, the roads that you take to the store or work. Or the freeway that you take on vacation across state lines or into national parks or onto a dude ranches. About 40 million miles of roads encircle the earth. We tend to take roads for granted. But is that case for all creatures? While roads certainly have benefits, they also cause problems especially for wildlife and vegetation. So much so that road ecology is now an area of study with experts who are seeking innovative solutions to mitigate and alter the havoc roads can cause. Environmental journalist Ben Goldfarb traveled throughout the United States and around the world to investigate how roads have transformed our planet. He joins Russell and Alan to share some of his startling discoveries, which he relates in his new book “Crossings: How Road Ecology is Shaping the Future of Our Planet.”

E31S4  Meet Musician Greg Hager: Family Friendly and Cowboy Gentleman

Without a doubt, Greg Hager’s western music is getting noticed. In 2019, MFG Records in Nashville signed him. His rural western roots run deep and are wellspring for his lyrics. Hager writes and composes everything that he sings, and his style is heavily influenced by other great 12-string guitar pickers and storytellers like John Denver, Roger Whittaker, Gordon Lightfoot, Paul Overstreet, Clint Black, and George Strait. Now with over ten albums to his name, he performs around the country, as well as overseas. Greg joins Alan and Russell to talk about what it’s like to be a career musician.

E30S4  Noir Westerns: Behind the Scenes with Alan K. Rode

When you think of film noir, you might think of “The Maltese Falcon,” starring Humphrey Bogart as the hard-boiled private detective Sam Spade. Or maybe “Sunset Boulevard,” starring Gloria Swanson as the aging, deranged silent-film star Norma Desmond. But there are also noir westerns. None is more celebrated than the 1948 “Blood on the Moon,” starring Robert Mitchum. It’s a classic Western immersed in the film noir netherworld of double crosses, government corruption, shabby barrooms, gun-toting goons, and romantic betrayals. Documentarian, producer and film noir expert Alan K. Rode joins Russell and Alan to talk about the movie and his eponymous book, “Blood on the Moon.”

E29S4 Meet Mark Sublette

Mark Sublette is the founder and owner of Medicine Man Gallery. A formal Naval physician, Mark is an expert in western art, specializing in the art of Maynard Dixon. He hosts the “The Art Dealer Diaries Podcast,” which features over 200 interviews with unique individuals who curate, collect, create, write, sell, and deal in Western and Native art. Mark’s involvement in the arts is all-encompassing. He buys, sells, researches, educates, and has established a foundation for the arts. Mark also is the author of the Charles Bloom Murder Mystery series. The photography featured in his novels is his other love. He joins Russell and Alan for a fascinating chat.

E28S4  Wild Horses: What’s in Their Future?

As a horse trainer and animal communicator, Anna Twinney has had the opportunity to work with wild horses. She also advocates for them. What does the future hold for wild horse herds across the West? Will herds continued to be gathered, dooming some horses to a life in feedlot prison? Will birth control be used to limit the growth of herds? Will there be enough forage for herds roaming drought-stricken lands? Does the Safe Act really protect horses? Anna answers these questions and more!

E27S4  Stories to Ring in the New Year!

“Out with the old, in with the new.” Or so the saying goes. But sometimes “the old” is the best, especially when it comes to stories. Russell, Alan and Lynn reflect on the past year and the wonderful guests who we were honored to interview on the podcast. We also celebrate the life of Alan’s sister and one of our national treasures, Sandra Day O’Connor. And as you’ll hear, sometimes one reflection leads to another and then another and before you know it, cowboy storytelling is in full swing!

E26S4  Wait, You Mean Gene Autry Didn’t Write “Here Comes Santa Claus?”

No, he didn’t! He sang it. Ginia Desmond knows the real story behind this beloved holiday song. She was there in sunny California when the idea hatched and the words were written. Ginia went on to write screenplays and produce movies and a whole lot more. Her award-winning indie film, “Lucky U Ranch,” is a charming coming-of-age story set in Arizona. (Available on Apple TV) And she has more films in the production chute. Ginia joins Russell and Alan for a fun, inspiring chat.

E25S4  America’s Signature Dishes: Tasty Culinary Treasures

America’s signature dishes can be found coast to coast. Crab Louie. French-fried onions. Pecan pie. You can practically taste them. Maybe you’ve even made them. But what most of us don’t know is the history behind these epicurean delights. Culinary historian Sherry Monahan decided to investigate signature recipes, from breakfast and breads, to soups and salads, to sides and main dishes, and desserts, particularly those served at hotels and restaurants. Where did they come from? Why do they remain so popular? She answers these questions in her new book “Signature Dishes of America: Recipes and Culinary Treasures from Historic Hotels and Restaurants.” She joins the podcast to give us the inside scoop on how some of our country’s most famed dishes originated.

E24S4  The Last Warriors: Fact, Fiction and Truth

One of W. Michael Farmer’s favorite quotes is by the American novelist Oakley Hall. “The pursuit of truth, not facts is the business of fiction,” said Hall. Farmer keeps these words in mind while penning his award-winning stories and histories, many of them about the Apaches, including Geronimo and a Mescalero Apache named Yellow Boy. Farmer speaks with Russell and Alan about his historical research about the Apaches, as well as about events like the Fountain murder trial. When included in stories, details gleaned from research transport readers to different backgrounds, cultures, religions, and eras.

E23S4  Remembering Sandra Day O’Connor (1930-2023)

In April 2022, Russell and Alan spoke with Scott O’Connor, Sandra Day O’Connor’s eldest son, about his mother, a woman who broke barriers, was a role model for many, and left giant footprints across our nation. Scott shared many stories about family life, including what he remembers when his mom stepped into the national spotlight. We wanted to share this wonderful conversation again as our country mourns and reveres one of its greatest leaders and influencers, The Honorable Sandra Day O’Connor.

E22S4  When Dreams Meet Reality on the Open, Remote Range

Jolyn Young grew up in the “real” northern California—the forgotten area at the tip-top of the state with small towns, extreme poverty, and about 40 miles to the Oregonian mountains. In a childhood defined by a subdivision, she decided she wanted to be a cowboy, and two years out of college, she saw that dream through, taking a job at a Nevada ranch in the search f of horses, cattle, and the wide-open range. And that’s where she fell in love. But when a baby-to-be suddenly spun her wild romance into a very practical marriage, and one decrepit ranch trailer home led to the next, Jolyn found her young family desperately seeking stability in a transient lifestyle that moves with the seasons. First with one child to care for, then eventually with three, Jolyn fought profound loneliness, finding comfort in writing and company in her camera. The author of the new memoir “Never Burn Your Moving Boxes,” Jolyn joins Russell and Alan to talk about it all!

E21S4  Horse Whispering & Animal Communicating with Anna Twinney

Anna Twinney never expected to make a career out of horse whispering, animal communicating, and energy healing. After all, she was a police officer in England specializing in trauma. But then as a way to deal with burnout, she found herself in California working with Monty Roberts and learning the art of horse training and horse whispering. Anna went on to create the Reach Out to Horses® Program, a hands-on approach to understanding the mind of the horse and building  a trust-based partnership. She now conducts clinics and workshops worldwide, from New Zealand to Mongolia, Europe to Canada and throughout the United States. She shares some amazing stories with Russell and Alan about horses, domesticated and wild, but also dogs, and even two elephants at a zoo. (You can check out her event schedule here.)

E20S4  From “Home Improvement” to Dude Ranch Roundup: Meet Debbe Dunning

Debbe Dunning is a multi-talented actress, host, and lifestyle influencer. She rose to fame as Heidi Keppert the “Tool Time Girl” on the hit sitcom “Home Improvement,” where she won over audiences. She recently hosted her own TV show “Debbe Dunning’s Dude Ranch Round-Up” on RFDTV. In addition to her acting career, Debbe is also a DIY expert, exceptional golfer and a passionate advocate for healthy living and motherhood. She shares her love for home renovation, healthy cooking, and wellness tips with her fans on social media, inspiring others to lead a healthy and fulfilling life. In this episode, Debbe shares her story with Russell and Alan.

E19S4  Dude or Die!

Dude ranch historian and expert Lynn Downey decided to set her first novel,” Dudes Rush In,” on a dude ranch. The second book in the series, “Dude or Die,” has just been published, and guess where it takes place? You bet, on a dude ranch! Not only does her story include cowboys and some cool trick riding, the novel also introduces a character who represents a story of the American West not often told—that of an American with Japanese heritage who endured forced internment during WWII. Lynn joins Russell and Alan to talk about her book, as well as her summer visit to the OTO  Dude Ranch in Montana where she worked in the final draft of “Dude or Die.”

E18S4 Navajo Code Talkers & More

Gallup, New Mexico, located in the northwest corner of the state, abuts the Navajo Nation. During his more than four decades of living in the area, Bob Rosebrough befriended many Navajos. While he was mayor of Gallup, he was introduced to a group of Navajo Code Talkers. These men, recruited by the U.S. Marine Corps., used their traditional language to transmit secret messages to Allies fighting in the Pacific during World War II. The men who Rosebrough met were awarded Congressional Silver Medals. Rosebrough writes about his experience in his award-winning book “A Place of Thin Veil: Life and Death in Gallup, New Mexico.”

E17S4  When Windfalls and Riches Await

At first, Erika Bolstad knew only one thing about her great-Grandmother, Anna: she was a homesteader on the North Dakota prairies in the early 1900s before her husband committed her to an asylum under mysterious circumstances. As Erika’s mother was dying, she revealed more. Their family still owned the mineral rights to Anna’s land—and oil companies were interested in the black gold beneath the prairies. Their family, Erika learned, could get rich thanks to the legacy of a woman nearly lost to history. Thus, began Erika’s journey into the past. She joins Russell and Alan to share her discoveries, which she also relates in her memoir, “Windfall: The Prairie Woman Who Lost Her Way and the Great-Granddaughter Who Found Her.”

E16S4 Bringing Back Water, Soil and Life

In the 1980’s, when Valer Clark moved from the East Coast to a cattle ranch in the Chiricahua Mountains, she fell in love with the area. But she was dismayed at how overgrazed the grasslands were. While observing running water during a forceful monsoon rain, she noticed soil accumulate behind a small rock dam. She began building rock dams, called trincheras, in eroded areas. Her efforts eventually caught the attention of Arizona State University researchers who began to collaborate with her. In 2018, Valer founded the nonprofit Cuenca Los Ojos (CLO), a 121,000-acre protected, restored, and rewilded area that is once again home to jaguar, ocelot, black bears, beavers and a host of other threatened and endangered species. Valer, along with CLO’s president Jeff Hampton, speaks with Russell and Alan about her work and Cuenca Los Ojo’s current projects and future endeavors.

E15S4 We Love Our Animals!

Every October 4th, we celebrate World Animal Day and the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals. To honor the animals we love, we are re-running one of our favorite past episodes about pets. If you’re an Arizona cowboy, those animals include horses and dogs, as well as a bobcat named Bobby, a hawk named Sylvester, and two javelinas named Sandra and Ann. 

E14S4  Riding the Pony Express

In the summer of 2019, Will Grant became a traveling horseman. His plan was to ride the 2,000-mile Pony Express trail starting in St. Joseph, MO and ending in Sacramento, CA. Unlike the original riders who covered the distance in ten days, Grant planned to ride it in a little under five months. He packed his bags, saddled his two horses, Chicken Fry and Badger, and set out on the trail. What ensued was an encounter with the inhabitants of the West—ranchers, farmers, historians, businesspeople— and the thrilling and, at times, treacherous landscapes. Will writes about this journey of a lifetime in his new book “The Last Ride of the Pony Express: My 2,000-Mile Journey into the Old West.” He joins Russell and Alan to talk about his experiences.

E13S4  Meet Bestselling Mystery Author J.A. Jance

How many authors can say they’ve written 67 books? Not many, but J.A. Jance can! She is the author of four series centering on retired Seattle Police Department Detective J. P. Beaumont; Coshise County Sheriff Joanna Brady; former Los Angeles news anchor turned mystery solver Ali Reynolds; and the Walker Family of Arizona. Her newest book is BLESSING OF THE LOST GIRLS, a Brady and Walker Family mystery. Set in Tucson, this story about missing persons, rodeos and so much more is one that you will not be able to put down. And to think, back in the day, J.A.’s creative writing professor kicked her out of class because she was a girl! J.A. sits down with Russell and Alan to share some stories about her life and writing experiences that are downright amazing. 

E12S4  The Cowboy Detective Who Left Footprints Across the West

Charlie Siringo was born in Matagorda, Texas in 1855 and went on his first cattle drive at age twelve. By age thirty, he had published a bestselling memoir, A Texas Cowboy. His later memoir, A Cowboy Detective, focused on his career with the Pinkerton Detective Agency and influenced early crime novelists. What tales did Siringo have to tell that could fill two memoirs? As Nathan Ward reveals in his new book “Son of the Old West: The Odyssey of Charlie Siringo: Cowboy, Detective, Writer of the Wild Fronter,” Siringo led a colorful life, one not only filled with adventures and encounters with renown westerners, but also a life that helped shape western history. In this episode, Nathan joins Russell and Alan to introduce Siringo and talk about what made the man unique and memorable and deserving of a place in western lore.

E11S4  For the Love of Animals

We love our animals, small and large. So do those professionals who help us care for them. Christine Staten, DVM is a large animal veterinarian and owner of Adobe Veterinary Center, specializing in small and large animals. She also mentors those new to the profession. During more than thirty years of practice, she has seen many changes both in the science side and business side. She chats with Russell and Alan about those changes and her concerns about the future of veterinary medicine.

E10S4 A Man of Many Hats

He’s an author, songwriter, storyteller, performer, cowboy, college prof, and Arizona’s own state historian. He’s Marshall Trimble, also known as the “Will Rogers of Arizona,” aptly nicknamed for his wit and demeanor. He can deliver anything from a serious history lecture to a stage concert of cowboy folk music and stories with his guitar. Trimble has appeared frequently on radio and television as a goodwill ambassador for the state and answers questions about the Old West from readers all over the world in True West Magazine’s popular column, “Ask the Marshall.” So, sit back and enjoy this conversation between Marshall and our favorite cowboys.

E9S4  Blueprint of a Cowboy

Bob West was a successful architect, working in the Denver area. He even owned a couple of horses stabled near Boulder, Colorado. But he couldn’t ignore the lure of the cowboying and ranching life. After he and his wife bought the Devil’s Washtub Ranch in Wyoming and relocated the family, he soon discovered that ownership of two horses does not equal twenty miles of fence, 3,200 deeded acres, 400 BLM acres, 154 head of black angus, and two and a half miles of the North Laramie River. The author of “Twenty Miles of Fence,” Bob West speaks with Russell and Alan about how he dealt with unanticipated challenges and why he’s never looked back. 

E8S4  In Awe of Wild Horses

Horses in the wild are a sight to behold! Chad Hanson knows this well. He’s watched and photographed hundreds of wild horses around the West, particularly in Wyoming. In his new book, “In a Land of Awe: Finding Reverence in the Search for Wild Horses,” Chad gives homage to the equines that symbolizes freedom, beauty, and the American spirit. He joins Russell and Alan to shares his adventures and insights about the wild mustangs, one of our favorite podcast topics.

E7S4  Meet Loop Rawlins – Trick Roper Extraordinaire

We had a chance to reconnect with Tucson native Loop Rawlins, who recently performed at White Stallion Ranch. Loop is one of the most versatile western performers in the world today. His act of trick roping, whip cracking and fancy gun spinning has thrilled audiences around the world, from Vegas stages to national sports stadiums to corporate and private events and even the audience of America’s Got Talent. Take a listen to this fascinating talent who is keeping the spirit of the West alive.  

E6S4  Calling All C. J. Box Fans!

Bestselling author C. J. Box joined us on the podcast just after the release of “Shadows Reel,” his 22nd novel featuring Wyoming Game Warden Joe Pickett and his wife Marybeth. It’s an exciting mystery of that puts the Pickett family in a pair of killers’ crosshairs. With our production team enjoying summer get-aways, we decided to replay this wonderful conversation between Box and the cowboys. Box, who has published over 30 books with sales exceeding 10 million in the US alone, has since released another Joe Pickett novel, “Storm Watch.” You can stream the “Joe Pickett” series, which just concluded its second season, on Paramount+.

E5S4  How the Summer of 1876 Made History

They all lived in the same era. Their names still ring familiar and we still remain curious about their lives. Wild Bill Hickok. Jesse James. Bat Masterson. Sitting Bull. Calamity Jane. Wyatt Earp. These are just some of the “celebrities” featured in Chris Wimmer’s new book, “The Summer of 1876: Outlaws, Lawmen, and Legends in the Season That Defined the American West.” Chris speaks with Russell and Alan about his research and insights into this exciting and influential year in our country’s history.

E4S4  Return of the Renaissance Cowboy

Arnold Burruel returns to the ranch to talk with Russell and Alan about farming, rodeos, water conservation, and history. And he answers this question: what is the only river in the US that runs both north and south? Let us know if you guessed the answer. Email us at

E3S4  Meet Arnold Burruel

Arnold Burruel knows horses and rodeos. He knows farming and selling feed. He has insights into water rights and the future of land use in Arizona. And, he has a great sense of humor. Add all this up and include Russell and Alan, and you have one heck of an interesting conversation about the past, present, and future of land and water use in Arizona and around the West.

E2S4  Life Along the Streetcar

By day, Tom Heath is a mild-mannered Senior Loan Office with NOVA Home Loans. During his off-hours, he’s all about supporting downtown Tucson and sharing its diverse treasures with others. He does this through his radio show “Life Along the Streetcar,” which focuses on the social, cultural, & economic events impacting those who live, work and play in Tucson’s urban core. He chats with Russell and Alan about what’s happening in the Old Pueblo, as well as what footprints from the past remain visible and impactful.

E1S4  Celebrate Western National Parks!

The U.S. National Park System encompasses over 400 national parks. Of those, 70 are supported by the Western National Parks Association. Carlsbad Caverns, NM.  Canyon De Chelly, AZ. Padre Island, TX. And so many more renown, enticing places to visit in a dozen western states. CEO Marie Buck joins Russell and Alan to talk about how WNPA not only supports parks, but also park visitors and the park experience. 

E50S3  Brave the Wild River

Surveying rugged western landscapes can be a challenging undertaking. One of the most challenging occurred in 1938 when two botanists decided to be the first to survey the plant life of the Grand Canyon. As it happened, the two were women. When the media reported about their impending journey down the Colorado River, skeptics roared disapproval and doubt. Melissa Sevigny, author of the new book “Brave the Wild River,” joins Russell and Alan to share the pioneering adventures of these brave women and their lasting contributions to science and ecology.

E49S3  Renewing the American Spirit

Judge Michael Warren has been focused on the state of America even before he and his ten-year-old daughter founded Patriot Week. The author of America’s Survival Guide and the host of the podcast Patriot Lessons, Judge Warren ventures to the ranch to talk about where America might be headed, why learning civics is crucial to our country’s future, and how we can renew and reclaim our spirit while preserving our democracy. 

E48S3 Get Your Kicks on Route 66

Photojournalist Terrence Moore became enamored with Route 66 while a teen living in California. After graduating from college, he found his way into photojournalism and began traveling extensively across the American West. He has travelled many highways and byways, but his favorite remains the iconic highway that John Steinbeck nicknamed the Mother Road. The author of “66 on 66,” Terry joins Russell and Alan at the ranch to share his adventures.

E47S3  Meet Cathy Woods: Creator of Body, Mind, Equine

How do the principles and practice of yoga affect riding and horsemanship? Long-time yoga instructor and retreat leader Cathy Woods speaks with Russell and Alan about just this topic. An equine enthusiast and avid rider who loves exploring the natural world from the back of a horse, Cathy combined her passions to create a program called “Body, Mind, Equine,” which focuses on the use of yoga principles and postures to improve horsemanship, from ground to saddle. Find out more about her retreats, workshops, and her book, “Yoga for Riders,” at

E46S3  Humans, Horses & Healing

Early in her career, Lynn Thomas, LCSW, noticed that horses had a profound influence on the troubled youth with whom she was working. That was the start of her efforts to incorporate horses into mental health and wellness programs. Lynn joins Russell and Alan to talk about the two non-profit organizations she co-founded and the campaign “Seen Through Horses,” which brings together organizations, celebrities, businesses, legislators, and passionate individuals to work collaboratively to expand the role horses play in mental health and well-being. And the timing couldn’t be better. May is National Mental Health Month.

E45S3  It All Started with Davy Crockett

Or at least the Crockett Trail, that 1500-mile stretch from West Tennessee to what is now Texas and the infamous Alamo. That’s the first trail that historian, artist, and author Rod Timanus followed and wrote about. He then went on to traverse other famous trails, as well as explore the lives of famous westerners and landmarks. Now the author of eight books, including the new novel “Penitent Gun,” Rod chats with the cowboys about his many western adventures.

E44S3  The Last Cowboys

These days, cowboying and ranching challenge those who don hats and boots and rely on the range for a living. If you add in the rodeo circuit, you have one heck of a busy life. Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist John Branch followed one family doing exaclty all of that. He joins Russell and Alan to talk about his book “The Last Cowboys,” as well as his newest collection of true stories, “Sidecountry: Tales of Death and Life from the Back Road of Sports.”

E43S3  David Rychener, Cowboy at Heart

Tucsonan David Rychener spent a career in the health field, but a lifetime in music. A singer and songwriter, David performs in many venues around the Old Pueblo, including weekly at White Stallion Ranch. He saddles up to the ranch, guitar in hand, to chat with Russell and Alan about his love of western tunes, what influences his songwriting, and how he’s sharing music through his new podcast “Cowboy at Heart.”

E42S3  Meet Craig Johnson & the Longmire Gang

When Craig Johnson wrote his first novel featuring Sheriff Walt Longmire, he had no idea it would lead to a New York Times bestselling series, much less become a TV blockbuster. But that it has! Craig joins Russell and Alan to talk about his newest Longmire mystery, “Hell and Back,” and his career writing about the fictional Absaroka County and the beloved Longmire gang.

E41S3 Arizona Highways: The Magazine That Keeps on Giving

Arizona Highways has been going strong ever since it launched back in 1925. One reason is its spectacular collection of monthly photographs that capture the state’s famous topography, as well as its diverse culture. Jeff Kida, the magazine’s photography editor, knows what it takes to get each publication just right. During his chat with Russell and Alan, Jeff explains how he chooses photos and how he has had to adapt over the years to the ever-changing landscape of publishing and photography.

E40S3 Breaking Through the Glass (or in This Case, the Dirt!)

Marjorie Lambert knew what she loved: archeology, specifically southwest archeology. But back around 1930, excavation sites were not a place for women. That didn’t deter Marjorie, a trailblazer who, during her illustrious career, worked as a field manager, museum director, curator, professor, and what’s more, married a cowboy who became a dude rancher. When author Shelby Tisdale met Marjorie Lambert and got to know her, she knew that she had to write a biography about this extraordinary woman. Shelby speaks with Russell and Alan about her new book, “No Place for a Lady.”

E39S3   Dude Ranching & Hollywood: Thinkin’ “City Slickers?” Think Again!?

While researching her acclaimed book, “American Dude Ranch,” historian and archivist Lynn Downey did a deep dive into how cinema has portrayed dude ranches. It all started back in 1918 with the movie “Hell Cat,” filmed at Valley Ranch in Cody, WY. Lynn chats with Russell and Alan about dude ranch films that many of us have come to know and love, as well as those that may not yet be on our western radar.

E38S3   What Makes Arizona So Awesome?

Is it the Grand Canyon? Absolutely, BUT there’s so much more to Arizona! Not only does it have more wilderness areas than in the entire Midwest, but it has Route 66, Navajo Code Talkers, hopelessly romantic tarantulas, the western most battle of the Civil War, and the list goes on. In fact, according to travel writer Roger Naylor, the list is at least 200 factoids long! In this episode, Roger joins Russell and Alan to talk about his new book, “Awesome Arizona” and share some amazing facts about the Grand Canyon State.

E37S3   Riding into Western History with Bill Markley

Who did what and when in the Old West continues to tantalize historians, novelists, filmmakers and others. Bill Markley has spent more time than most delving into infamous events and characters and trying to sort fact from fiction. Did Butch Cassidy die in Bolivia? What about Davy Crockett’s many deaths? And what really happened during the Johnson County War? Bill joins Russell and Alan to take a trail ride into the West’s intriguing past.

E36S3   Making a Career of Trick Riding

Japanese-American cowgirl Miko Moriuchi McFarland put herself through college trick riding six nights a week and going to classes during the day. A founder of the Trixie Chicks Trick Riders, she has performed on the rodeo circuit, ridden beside Budweiser Clydsdales and carried the the American flag during the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Lexington, KY. She chats with Russell and Alan about her career as a professional trick rider and her new hobby—mounted archery.

E35S3 A Hike to Remember

The Pacific Northwest Trail has Cheryl Strayed. The Appalachian Trail has Bill Bryson. And now the Arizona Trail has Tom Zoellner. In 2019, Zoellner hiked the trail’s 800 miles and took a deep dive into what makes the Grand Canyon State tick. He chronicles his extraordinary journey and insights into Arizona’s culture, history, mysteries and more in his new book “RIM TO RIVER: Looking into the Heart of Arizona.” Zoellner joins Russell and Alan to talk about it all, including the city once known as Pumpkinville. 

E34S3 The Two Gentlemen Cowboys Talk Books and Tell Stories

Finally, after having to shut down for the Covid events, we are so happy that a world-class famous Tucson Festival of Books is back. And we are going to take you there. So think about getting a good book and join us as we celebrate the festival.

So join the gentleman cowboys, Russell and Alan, as they tell stories, go down memory lane, and share some cowboy and life wisdom, which we certainly need in our world today.

E33S3   Off-Gridders at America’s Edge

Ted Conover decided to give it a try. This award-winning journalist and New York resident spent parts of four years living off the grid on five acres of Colorado land. There, he encountered an unexpected diverse population and learned much about a culture that steers clear of the mainstream. He speaks with Alan and Russell about his experiences and his new book “Cheap Land Colorado.”

EpisodeE32S3   The Allure of Bisbee, AZ

Back in the day, Bisbee was a hub of mining and shipping, a city of immigrants. Now a hub for artists, entrepreneurs, tourists, and ghosts (yes, – ghosts!), Bisbee is one of Arizona’s revered cities. Photographer Virgil Hancock captures the essence of Bisbee past and present in his new book, “Bisbee: The Alchemical City of the Borderlands.” He visits with Russell and Alan to talk about his experience photographing and researching this fraught and fascinating area.

E31S3   Barbra Schulte: Horse Lover, Trainer, Performance Coach

Barbra Schulte has spent almost her entire life with horses. What has she learned from them? Tons, including how to overcome some tough challenges she’s had to face. This National Cowgirl Hall of Fame honoree joins Russell and Alan to talk about her career as a cutting horse trainer and competitor and how that morphed into becoming an equestrian performance coach.

E30S3   These Boots Were Made for Riding

Cowboy boots! They’re a staple of western wear. But what’s the history of the cowboy boot? Who originally designed it and how did it become so popular? Russell and Alan speak with Zach Lawless, the CEO of Hyer Boots, whose great-grandfather is credited with designing the first cowboy boot.

E29S3   Ride Lonesome: A Classic Reel of the West

Without a doubt, “Ride Lonesome” is a classic Western. Starring the great Randolph Scott, the movie was filmed in 17 days. In his new book, award-winning screenplay writer Kirk Ellis takes a deep dive into what made this film so iconic. He saddles up to the ranch to talk with Russell and Alan about the movie, how it influenced future western flicks, and what it took to write his book “Ride Lonesome.”

E28S3   Long Distance Trail Riding with Gillian Larson

What does it take to ride 2600 miles on horseback? How do you prepare meals? Haul water? Care for your horse? Best ask someone who has logged thousands of miles long distance riding. Gillian Larson is that person. She’s accumulated over 10,000 miles riding the backcountry and what’s more, with the same two horses. Gillian chats with Russell and Alan about her many adventures and how she is now teaching others how to “thru-ride” trails around the West.

E27S3   Hellraising & Trailblazing Women of the West

As acclaimed authors Bob Boze Bell and Jana Bommersbach write, “We know all about the bandits and bad boys, the gunfighters and goons, but not the women who held it all together with grit and spit. The reality is plain: there never would have been a settled West without the women—Native and Mexican women here first; Black and White women who followed—all settling the vast, unknown and scary lands beyond the Mississippi River. But they’ve never gotten their due. If they’re mentioned at all, it’s as whores or tough-living Calamity Janes. Here’s the good news: You don’t have to dig deep to find remarkable stories of the remarkable women of the West—you just have to care enough to dig.” Bob and Jana join Russell and Alan to talk about what they found on their literary dig and how it eventually turned into their new book “Hellraisers & Trailblazers: The Real Women of the Wild West.”

E26S3 Our Beloved Dogs

Without a doubt, W. Bruce Cameron loves dogs. But unlike most dog lovers, he also writes about them. The New York Times bestselling author has over 30 books in print featuring four-legged friends. His book “A Dog’s Purpose” was adapted to the silver screen and became one of the longest running feature films about dogs. Bruce joins Russell and Alan to talk about his career and introduce his new book, “Love, Clancy: Diary of a Good Dog.”

E25S3   So Who Really Wrote “Here Comes Santa Claus?”

Did you guess Gene Autry? Many people do. But the famed singer only sang it, he didn’t write it. Ginia Desmond reveals the true story about how this well-loved holiday song came to be. A screenplay writer and movie producer, Ginia also talks with Russell and Alan about her award-winning feature film, “Lucky U Ranch,” as well as what’s in the moviemaking chute for next year.

E24S3   What’s Good for the Planet is Good for You

So says Eric Perner, cattle rancher, mechanical engineer, and co-founder of REP Provisions By working with nature (instead of against it), regenerative agriculture holds incredible promise for healing the planet while feeding our communities real food. Eric joins Russell and Alan to share the science, as well as his astounding personal experiences, behind this approach to maintaining healthy land and, as Alan Day likes to say, “happy grass.”

E23S3   Horses, Hyphens, and Human Rights

Pardhis Madhavi was born in US after her Iranian parents fled Iran in the 1980s. Overtime, Pardhis developed a love of horses and learning. Both have played significant roles in her life, helping her help others and endure her own hardships. Now a provost at the University of Montana, Pardhis speaks with Russell and Alan about the national and international paths she has traveled.

E22S3   Where Did They Come From?

Genealogy is all the rage. That’s because we seem to have an innate curiosity about our ancestors. David A. Bowles grew up knowing the story of his family, at least back to the early 1800s. A Texan who grew up on a ranch, David became a storyteller. He joins Russell and Alan to share some fascinating stories of his pioneering family.

E21S3   Their Legends Live On

Even if you don’t know about their lives, you probably recognize their names. Wild Bill Hickock and Buffalo Bill Cody were considered heroes and the greatest plainsmen of their time. Award-winning author Bill Markley chats with Russell and Alan about the truths and myths surrounding these two legendary westerners.

E20S3   How Many Hats Can One Person Wear?

A bunch, if you’re Anne Montgomerty. This Arizonan joins Russell and Alan to talk about her varied career as a sports TV host, referee, journalist, professor, high school teacher, novelist, wild horse love, and more. There’s tons here to inspire you to aim high and try new things!

E19S3 The Man Who Gave Levis to the World

When you hear the word “Levis,” you think of jeans. That’s because Levi Strauss invented them and made them world renown. Historian and author Lynn Downey, who was the archivist for the Levi Strauss company for 25 years, chats with Russell and Alan about the man who immigrated from Germany and left an enduring legacy in the USA.

E18S3   Junior Bonner

What do you think of when you hear the name Junior Bonner? Most likely Steve McQueen, cowboys, cattle, the West. But do you know the famed movie was filmed entirely in Prescott, Arizona? And it’s celebrating its 50th anniversary? Stuart Rosebrook, whose father Jeb Rosebrook wrote the “Junior Bonner” screenplay, shares the inside scoop with Russell and Alan about the making of the movie and how it became embedded in western culture.

E17S3 The Story of a Modern Day Cattle Rustler

Jon Armour never expected to meet a cattle rustler. But as it turns out, he unwittingly became good friends with one. Jon was so shocked to learn the truth about his upstanding, popular buddy, that he had to write a book about him. Jon joins Russell and Alan to talk about his new book BRANDED, a fictionalized account of the most notorious cattle rustler of our time.

E16S3   Enlightened Equine Hoofcare

Steve Hebrock knows horses, especially horses’ hooves. They are a living part of the entire horse and thus, have a relationship with the horse’s body and mind. Steve saddles up to White Stallion to talk with Russell and Alan about how natural equine hoofcare is done and how it affects a horse’s overall well-being.

E15S3   Meet Micki Fuhrman

Without a doubt, Micki Fuhrman is multi-talented. She performed at the Grand Ole Opry before age twenty. Since then, she’s written songs and stories and books. And now she has a new album of western songs that already has won awards. She joins the cowboys to talk about her sources of inspiration and her journey as an artist who is in love with the West.

E14S3   Desert Chrome: Water, a Woman, and Wild Horses in the West

Kathryn Wilder lived in many places around the West. Today, she makes her home on the Colorado Plateau in southwestern Colorado, near a herd of wild horses. This is where she got to know Chrome, a wild mustang that profoundly affected her life. She speaks with Russell and Alan about her experiences with the wild horses and the BLM, as well as her personal journey, all described in her award-winning memoir, Desert Chrome.

E13S3   Wild Horse Fire Brigade

Growing up on a ranch, William Simpson was more than familiar with the habits of ranch horses. He never anticipated that wild horses would be so different. After spending extended time with a herd in northern California, he realized that these horses might just be able to play a role in preventing wild fires. Bill joins Russell and Alan to share how his research and innovative ideas resulted in the non-profit organization, Wild Horse Fire Brigade.

E12S3 Dude Ranch Guests: From Hollywood to New York City

You never know who you’re going to meet at a dude ranch. Pam and Ralph Ventura have been guests at White Stallion for over 45 years, and they’ve loved every minute. They visit with Russell and Alan about why they keep coming back to the ranch and about the adventures they’ve had in their own careers working among the famed and fortuned.

E11S3   Equine Medicine

Larry Shamis, DVM, has spent a career practicing equine medicine and surgery. He talks with Russell and Alan about some of the horses he’s met, cases he’s dealt with, and how these  days, fewer vets are specializing in equine health. What does that mean for ranchers, cowboys, and horse lovers? Give a listen as the vet and the cowboys weigh in on this important subject.

E10S3 The Horse Lover Rides Again

Some stories you just can’t forget. They’re too unique, too big, too awesome. Alan Day’s story about creating the first government-sponsored wild horse sanctuary and caring for and training 1500 wild mustangs is one of those stories. In honor of his book “The Horse Lover” being released in a new format, Alan shares some of the wild and crazy adventures he had on Mustang Meadows Ranch.

E9S3  Behind the Scenes of Horse Racing

You place your bet. Take your seat. And pretty soon, they’re off! Sleek, strong, beautiful horses racing around a track. But for all that to happen, a lot of people have to lend a hand. Mike Weiss knows this. He has spent his career in horse racing wearing more hats over the years than most. He joins Russell and Alan to talk about what it takes to keep a track operating and the horses running.

E8S3  The Dude Ranching Getaway

Should a dude ranch getaway be on your bucket list? With over 90 dude ranches in the United States, the dude ranch vacation is becoming more and more popular. What makes it so unique? Horses, of course. But there’s so much more. Today’s guest visits with Russell and Alan to talk about the magic he’s been finding for the past 10 years during his dude ranch getaways.

E7S3  Battle of the Alamo

Thomas D. Clagett’s newest historical novel “Line of Glory” follows the imagined hopes, fears and destinies of four people involved in the infamous 1936 Battle of the Alamo. Clagett, who had a long and successful career in film and freelance writing, chats with the cowboys about what might have happened all those decades ago in what is now San Antonio, TX.

E5S3  Howard Post: One of the Best of the West

Howard Post grew up on a ranch and fully intended to become a cowboy. Then he won an art contest at an early age. His paintings have been exhibited at the Autry Museum of the West, the Smithsonian, numerous galleries and can be found in private collections of the rich and famous. A cowboy at heart, Howard saddles up to the ranch to talk with Russell and Alan about his illustrious career.

Bonus Episode – The Cowboy Up Podcast with Voices of the West – Life was better when the TV shows were about cowboys rather than lawyers.

“Life was better when the TV shows were about cowboys rather than lawyers”   Emil Franzi

Welcome to a bonus episode of The Cowboy Up Podcast … Russell and Alan and our cowboy guest had other cowboy work come up and they had to tend to those chores and duties. So we called on our good friend Harry Alexander to tell about his program and podcast called Voices of the West.  Voices of the West emerged from a Tucson Arizona legendary character. 

Emil Franzi was known as the political talk show host throughout southern Arizona.  But he also got tired of the politics and began a great addition to his program in which he shared all kinds of stories and legends and the history of the western way of life. 

Emil has now hung up his spurs but his good friend Harry Alexander carries on the tradition in a wonderful and facciful podcast that has that very unique subtitle.  So our producer Stan Hustad took some time to talk to Harry about the program that shares the western and cowboy code way of life.

E4S3  Think Like a Horse with Grant Golliher

Horse whisperer, leadership expert, and author Grant Golliher has spent a lifetime around horses. He knows how they think. What’s more, he knows how that thinking can help humans. Grant joins Russell and Alan to talk about what leaders—from business CEOs and execs, to politicians, celebrities, and others—learn from horses at the Diamond Cross Ranch in Wyoming.

E3S3  Got Cowboy Culture?

The cowboy life. It’s at the heart of western culture. And it fascinates fans of the American West from west to east and around the world. Russell and Alan give an inside peek into what the cowboy life is like now and then. As Alan likes to say, “This one’s a bunch of fun.” 

E2S3  The Legendary Patania Family

There are silversmiths, and then there are the Patanias. As third-generation Sam Patania likes to say, beginning with his Sicilian-born grandfather, the artists in his family use jewelry as their canvas. Sam speaks with Russell and Alan about his family’s exceptional silversmithing and design talents and how Patania creations became part of the Smithsonian’s permanent collection.

E1S3  Bodywork for Horses

To start off Season 3, we bring you equine bodywork expert Jim Masterson. Humans aren’t the only creatures who experience physical stress and tension. Horses do too. Masterson has developed a unique, highly effective method for relieving horses of aches and pains, a process that also builds trust between human and horse. What’s more, anyone can learn the Masterson Method!

E50S2 A Rodeo Star in the Making

Ciarra Arzaga doesn’t even recall the first time she rode a horse. She was too young. But she does remember learning how to rope. Now sixteen, Ciarra regularly competes in roping and other rodeo events—and regularly wins. She talks about her technique, favorite horses, and future plans with Russell and Alan.

E49S2  Dare to Make a Movie

Larry Martin knows writing. An award-winning author, he’s penned over 60 novels, mostly westerns, plus more than a handful of screenplays. But making a movie? Martin had never tried his hand at something so out of his artistic wheelhouse. He joins Russell and Alan to share his story of how he brought his new feature film “Eye for Eye” to the silver screen.

E48S2  Meet Johnny Boggs

Johnny Boggs may or may not own a six-shooter, but this western writer has won six Spur Awards for his novels and short stories. He joins the Cowboy Up team to talk about his illustrious career in journalism and fiction writing and how he adopted the West after a childhood spent in the South.

E47S2  Ever Shoe A Horse?

There’s no doubt about it. Shoeing horses is hard work, but it’s work that needs to be done. And who usually gets to do it? In this, case two veteran cowboys. You betcha, Russell and Alan have shod more horses than they can count. And here they are, shoeing another one at White Stallion Ranch.

E46S2  Swappin’ Cowboy Stories

In honor of Memorial Day, Russell and Alan recall their families’ involvement with war. Those who fought, almost fought, as well as others. In true cowboy fashion, one story leads to another and to another. Be prepared to chuckle, laugh, and shed a tear or two. A hats off and a cowboy salute to all the brave souls who served the United States of America.

E45S2 What Happened to the Widows?

On June 25, 1876, General George Custer and some 200 soldiers perished in the Battle of the Little Bighorn. Their wives soon learned of the outcome. They were now widows. How these women coped and survived is the subject of the new book, “The Widowed Ones,” written by New Times bestselling author, actress and comedienne, Chris Enss. She chats with Russell and Alan about what she discovered about these brave and amazing women.

E44S2  Cowboy Music with Bill Ganz

For 25 years, The Bill Ganz Western Band regaled audiences with cowboy music. Local bars, rodeos, even Tucson’s symphony hall—the band played it all. Bill Ganz, the guitar-picking founder, joins Russell and Alan to talk about his career and the future of western music. And you betcha, Bill sings some tunes exclusively for our podcast listeners!

E43S2  The Forgotten Botanist

In 1870, a talented young woman packed up her bags and bid adieu to a damp and chilled East Coast. Sara Plummer Lemmon would spend the remainder of her life in the West leaving a legacy still visible today. And yet, she remains in the shadows of history. Wynne Brown, author of the award-winning biography, “The Forgotten Botanist: Sara Plummer Lemmon’s Life of Science and Art” brings to light the many accomplishments of this remarkable woman.

E42S2  A Place of Thin Veil

Gallup, New Mexico is not known as a tourist destination. Yet, this community situated near the Four Corners is rich in diversity and history. Longtime resident and past mayor of Gallup, Bob Rosebrough, joins Russell and Alan to talk about his new memoir, “A Place of Thin Veil,” which brings to life the stories, mysteries, and evocative landscapes of this part of the Land of Enchantment.

E41S2  Water, Water Everywhere?

The Colorado River is at its lowest levels. Is climate change the culprit? Unexpected urban growth? Mismanagement over the decades? To sort through these questions, Russell and Alan chat with experts Eric Kuhn and John Fleck, co-authors of “Science Be Dammed,” a look at how this valuable resource has evolved over the past 100 years.

E40S2  Dale Evans: The Queen of the West

She was a lover of music and determined to find her way into the limelight. And that she did. Dale Evans rose to fame as an actress, singer, and wife of Roy Rogers. Historian Theresa Kaminski, author of the new biography “Queen of the West: The Life and Times of Dale Evans,” shares some fascinating, behind-the-scenes stories with Russell and Alan about this Hollywood superstar.

E39S2  Happy Birthday, Sandra Day O’Connor!

The Supreme Court Justice turns 92 this year. What a life, what a legacy! To help celebrate both, Sandra’s son, Scott O’Connor, joins Russell and Uncle Al to share stories about what life was like with a mom who shattered glass ceilings and made friends not just across America, but around the world.

E38S2  Meet Brianna Markum-McClain: Roper, Wrangler, and Rodeo Star

If you start roping at age five, are you destined to rope in rodeos – and win? Brianna Markum-McClain would argue yes. This talented cowgirl chats with Russell and Alan about what it’s like to grow up on a ranch, own a rodeo company, and be headed to Vegas for team roping finals!

E37S2  Storytelling the Cowboy Way

Saddle up and give a listen to Russell and Alan as they swap stories from the range. You’ll also hear from a few western writers coming live from the Tucson Festival of Books where they shared their stories. Storytelling – it’s the cowboy way then and now!

E36S2 Makin’ Bacon with Neil Dudley

Bacon and eggs. Bacon and beans. Bacon in a BLT. Bacon has long been a cowboy’s staple and is savored by millions. Today, Russell and Alan speak with Neil Dudley, cowboy, rancher, podcast host, and VP at Pederson’s Farms, a producer of natural and organic bacon and meats. Fair warning—this episode will set your mouth to watering, so get your fry pan ready!

E35S2 A Touch of the Cowboy & the Thrill of the West

Listen up dudes and dudines! This one’s for you. Award-winning author, curator, and historian Lynn Downey shares some stories straight from the history of dude ranching. From the funny to the unbelievable to the eye-popping, dude ranching has not only impacted the travel industry, but also embedded its way into fashion, food, and, of course, fun.

E34S2 Meet C.J. Box

Are you one of the millions of C.J. Box fans? Then you’ll be thrilled to hear that he has a new book releasing. “Shadows Reel” is his 22nd novel featuring Wyoming Game Warden Joe Pickett and his wife Marybeth, and this one is filled with discoveries that put the Pickett family in a pair of killers’ crosshairs. C.J. chats with Russell and Alan about “Shadows Reel” and a writing life that includes over 30 published books with sales exceeding 10 million in the US alone.

E33S2 Great Stories and Songs from the heart of a cowboy who is a Cowboy at Heart

Indeed David Rychener is a cowboy at heart.  Just like so many of us who love to listen to the lore and legends and the stories of The Cowboy Up Podcast. Today David drops in and tell stories and sing songs for Russell and Alan and you will be delighted at what you learn, what you hear, and it just might even touch your heart.

E32S2 Tales, Treasures, and the Tastes of Tombstone, the town that was too tough to die.

When the subject of Tombstone Arizona comes up everybody who’s heard of it has some thoughts and opiniona. So join us for some more stories about Tombstone and all of the legends and lore that go with it. But let’s do something different, let’s talk about the Taste of Tombstone, as our guest Sherry Monahan tells you about what they would eat and perhaps you can join them at the Tombstone cookbook.

E31S2 Where did the horses come from and other great western stories you’ve never heard before

Get ready for an interesting hour as three old Cowboys tell stories about legends of the west and the history of Arizona.  Russell and Alan sit down with a cowboy cup of coffee and have a great conversation with Western historian Jim Turner.  You will be amazed as you discover all kinds of things that you never knew before, and even something about the nature of the human condition. Stories from yesterday with meanings for today.  Time to saddle up.

E30S2 Tony Hillerman: A Life

Tony Hillerman is a legendary western writer. His bestselling novels introduced readers to the Diné (Navajo) culture through characters Navajo Tribal Police detectives Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee. Now, fans have a chance to meet the man behind the novels. New York Times bestselling author James McGrath Morris researched and wrote the definitive biography about Hillerman. He joins Russell and Alan to talk about his new book “Tony Hillerman: A Life.”

E29S2 Wild Horse Adventures

What do you get when you mix a 35,000-acre South Dakota ranch with an excess of unadoptable wild horses imprisoned in feedlots and one heck of a brilliant idea? Alan Day’s answer: the first government-sponsored wild horse sanctuary. He knows because he started that sanctuary. Yep, 1500 wild mustangs came to live with him on his ranch and the whole bunch, including Alan and his cowboys, had more adventures than they could’ve ever imagined. Listen in to hear!

E28S2: Buffalo Soldiers of the Southwest

The history of the Buffalo Soldiers is not only fascinating but is firmly embedded in Arizona history. Charles Hancock, former president of the Southwest Association of Buffalo Soldiers, joins Russell and Alan to talk about the important role these soldiers played, share some of their heroic stories, and explore what’s being done to honor and preserve their legacy.

E27S2: Meet Tom Tatum

Tom Tatum, who divides his time between Telluride and Taos, wears many hats, among them author, movie producer, director, rancher, land conservationist, solar energy company CEO. Tatum talks with Russell and Alan about his new face-paced western novel “Adobe Daze” and how his personal experiences informed the story.

E26S2: Natural Hoof Care for Horses

Ring in the New Year with this enlightening episode featuring Steve Hebrock, one of five master hoof care specialists in the world. Your horse’s feet will appreciate it! Wishing everyone a happy, healthy, and safe 2022.

E25S2: A Cowboy Christmas Story

In this delightful episode, Alan shares stories about Rastus, who arrived at the Lazy B as a nine-year-old orphan and where he worked as a cowboy for the remainder of his life. From the entire podcast crew, we wish you a delightful and very Merry Christmas.

E24S2: Terror on the Santa Fe Trail 

We may not hear much about the Jicarilla Apache, but they were fierce warriors who raided wagon trains and fought the calvary. In fact, they soundly defeated the U.S. Army in the Battle of Cieneguilla. Award-winning author and historian, Doug Hocking, shares details from his new book “Terror on the Santa Fe Trail” with Russell and Alan and the role Kit Carson played during that tumultuous time.

E23S2: Rawhide Riatas: Essential Cowboy Gear

A cowboy’s gear is not complete without a rope. But ropes can break. Dick Schorr, a retired rancher and veterinarian, is an expert on riatas. New ones, old ones, and ones in need of repair. He chats with Russell and Alan about the art of rope making and the workshops he has given around the country.

E22S2: The Greatest Untold Railroad War

Back in the late 1870s, the owner of the Santa Fe Railroad, William Barstow Strong, and the owner of the Rio Grande Railroad, General William Jackson Palmer, found themselves at war. Historian John Sedgwick, author of the new book “From the River to the Sea: The Untold Story of the Railroad War that Made the West,” joins Russell and Alan to talk about what took place as these two powerhouses fought over land and money.

E21S2: Stunt Men of the Silver Screen

Most of us will never rob a train on horseback or purposefully fall from the saddle of a horse. As movie stunt men, Bobby Stevens and Rob Jensen have done both multiple times. They chat with Russell and Alan about the thrills that come with the work, as well as the occasional broken bone and bruised body.

E20S2: Art of the Southwest

The Southwest is filled with iconic images, from saguaro cacti to adobe homes to brilliant sunsets. Thousands of artists have captured these images. Mark Sublette, owner of Medicine Man Gallery and host of the “Art Dealer Diaries Podcast,” joins Russell and Alan to talk about southwestern art including paintings by the acclaimed Maynard Dixon, one of the most revered artists of the West.

E19S2: Cowboy is a Verb with Richard Collins

Richard Collins knows cowboying. He also knows ranching and land conservation. The Arizona native and author of the books “Cowboy is a Verb” and “Riding Behind the Padre” talks with Russell and Alan about his experiences with the Canelo Hills Coalition, a group of ranchers and Forest Service and BLM employees that came up with innovative ways to manage grazing in a habitat occupied by endangered species.

E18S2: Pearl Hart: Wildcat of the Wild West

Not many women bandits have roamed the West. Probably the most notorious and the one who made headlines around the country is Pearl Hart. Author and historian John Boessenecker saddles up to the ranch to chat with Russell and Alan about WILDCAT, his new book about Pearl’s forays and adventures in the Arizona territory and beyond.

E17S2: Drives, Hikes, and History with Roger Naylor

Need a Fall nature fix? Whether you want a scenic drive or a hiking trail, travel writer Roger Naylor can get you going in the right direction in the stunning Grand Canyon State. Roger joins Russell and Alan to offer ideas and paint some tantalizing word pictures of what to expect. And the cowboys, well, they chime in with adventures had in the natural wilds of the West.

E16S2 Water Challenges of the West

Water is in short supply these days, especially in the West. But conservationists, experts, and others are addressing the issue with innovative ideas for capturing and containing water. Jeff Hampton is one of those concerned and creative folks. He joins Russell and Alan to talk about ways to manage our life-sustaining resource—water.

E15S2: Jo Mora: Renaissance Man of the West

Jo Mora (1876-1947) was more than just multi-talented. A painter, sculptor, cartoonist and photographer, who settled in California, he also learned to speak Hopi and Navajo, wrote and illustrated children’s books, and published charts and maps. Peter Hiller, an expert on the life and times of Jo Mora, talks with Russell and Alan about the accomplishments of this “renaissance man of the West.”

E14S2: Myth-Busting the West

Two members of Western Writers of America, Bill Markley and Kellen Cutsforth, roll up their sleeves and dig into the truth behind some western legends. Co-authors of the upcoming book “Stand Off at High Noon: Another Battle over the Truth in the Mythic Wild West,” these two historians join Russell and Alan to dish about notorious figures and infamous events of the Old West.

E13S2: Meet Carol Markstrom

From college professor to award-winning singer and songwriter, that’s Carol Markstrom. Twice named Western Female Vocalist of the Year, Carol saddles up to the ranch, guitar in hand, to speak with Russell and Alan about her career path and many successes including her most recent album “Mile After Mile.”

E12S2: The Wild Bunch Film Festival

It started six years ago in Willcox, AZ and has grown exponentially. Now screening over 60 films during the four-day weekend spectacular, the Wild Bunch Film Festival is a place for western film lovers to gather. Founder Rock Whitehead and childhood actress Dawn Lyn, who starred in the movie “Shootout” with Gregory Peck, join Russell and Alan to talk about this year’s fest highlights.

E11S2: Cowboy Culture Gets a PR Boost

Those eager to preserve the western way of life and cowboy culture come from all walks of life. This week, Russell and Alan speak with two Arizonans who make change through government channels. Kevin and Joe DeMenna saddle up to the ranch to talk about how they use their public relations and political consulting talents to get things done on the range and even the racetrack.

E10S2: Bareback Riding: More Than a Hobby for This Cowboy

Cowboy Jim Liles began his 20-year career as a bareback rider around the age of 13. More than fifty years later, he can still recount stories of the many times those broncs broke his bones, including some bones more than once. And yet, bareback riding has remained his life’s passion, and the broncs have remained the horses he loves most. The founder of the Bareback Riding Hall of Fame and Museum, Jim joins Russell and Alan to talk about his rodeo adventures and his efforts to preserve cowboy culture.

E9S2: Cowboys Don’t Need Tall Tales!

Why tell a tall tale when the truth is so crazy it’s barely believable? In this episode, Russell and Alan confirm that truth is indeed stranger than fiction. When you’re out on the range, on the back of  a horse, in the cockpit of an airplane, you’re living adventures guaranteed to be told around the campfire for decades to come. So, grab a seat, roast some marshmallows, and give a listen as two cowboys tell true tales from the range.

E8S2: Following Frederick Loring

When author and historian Lynn Downey learned about Frederick Loring, she instantly became fascinated. Loring was an up-and-coming author from the East Coast when he ventured west in 1871 at the age of twenty-three. Downey joins Russell and Alan to share her adventures retracing parts of Loring’s journey around the West and what she learned about the man and the beauty and brutality he encountered.

E7S2: Cowboy Musings from Kent Reeves

Kent Reeves packs a lot of interests and talent in his wheelhouse. Land conservation. Photography. Cowboy poetry. And he chats with Russell and Alan about it all from his home in California where he founded Rancher to Rancher (R2R), a network of ranchers and ecologists focused on environmentally sustainable land-management practices. What’s good for the land is good for the earth!

E6S2: Murder, Mystery & Suspense with author Shannon Baker

Shannon Baker lives on the edge of the Tucson desert with her “crazy Weimaraner and favorite human.” She also lived in Flagstaff for a few years and spent 20 years in the Nebraska Sandhills, where cattle outnumber people by more than 50:1. She joins Russell and Alan to talk about her mystery series, some set in the desert, some in the Sandhills, and how her experiences, play out on the page—with added embellishments, of course!

E5S2: Behind the Scenes at a Dude Ranch

Like any hospitality business, dude ranching can be full of surprises. Tombstone Monument Ranch manager Michelle DeSplinter reveals some of the challenges, laughs and joys she’s encountered during her years working at a dude ranch. Let’s just say you can’t always predict what the day will bring!

E4S2: Exploring Tombstone with Burt Devere

Russell and Alan continue exploring the history of Tombstone, AZ, this time with special guest Burt Devere, whose great-grandfather settled in the area in the late 1800s. Burt shares some fascinating stories from then and now. (What would you do if you witnessed a train robbery?)

E3S2: National Day of the Cowboy

This year, we celebrate the 17th annual National Day of the Cowboy. Last year, we interviewed founder Bethany Braley, who is dedicated to preserving cowboy culture and heritage. Here’s the special reprise of our interview with her. Hats off to you, Bethany!

E2S2: Back at it in Tombstone

Russell and Alan continue exploring Tombstone, Arizona, where they chat with longtime resident Steve Goldstein, owner of Big Nose Kate’s Saloon. If you spend enough time in the town, you’ll most likely meet Goldstein, otherwise known as “Mr. Tombstone.”  So how did a guy from the Bronx find his way to this best-of-the-West setting? Bet you’ll never guess!

E1S2: Meet Craig Hensley

Actor and playwright Craig Hensley knows the West, old and new. Born and raised in Arizona, he was headed toward a career as a forest ranger when he heard the call of  “show biz.” Hensley has accumulated acting credits in film, television and theater from New York to Los Angeles and numerous locales in between. He also wrote and starred in the stage production, “Wyatt: Last Words.” Hensley speaks with Russell and Alan from historic Tombstone, AZ, where he lives with his wife Gina and Golden Retriever, Coosa.

E50: The Legendary Pony Express

Many of us have heard about the Pony Express, founded in 1860. But did you know this “start-up” mail delivery service only operated for 18 months? Expert Jim DeFelice, author of “West Like Lightning,” joins Russell and Alan to sort through the fact and fiction associated with the legendary Pony Express. [True or False: Buffalo Bill Cody rode for the Pony Express. Listen for the answer!

E49: Horse ‘in Around

No cowboy is without a saddlebag or two of horse stories. And Russell and Alan are no exception. Joining in with his own share of tales about horses ridden and loved and wrecks survived is lifelong cowboy Mac Mackenny, who hails from Calgary in Alberta, Canada. If you want to hear some wild, western adventures that not even the best fiction writer could concoct, then give a listen, right here, right now.

E48: Blockbuster Western Fiction with Michael Punke

You may know bestselling author Michael Punke from his blockbuster novel “The Revenant,” also an Academy award-winning film starring Leo DiCaprio. Well, Punke has picked up pen again and this time turned out “Ridgeline,” a riveting story set in 1866 Wyoming. He joins Russell and Alan to talk about the true events and characters behind this new novel already optioned for the silver screen.

E47: The Sonoran Desert’s Culinary Heritage

Carolyn Neithammer has been writing ethnobotanies, cookbooks, and biographies about the Southwest for her entire career. Her most recent book, “A Desert Feast,” explores how Tucson came to be honored as the first UNESCO City of Gastronomy in the U.S.. Caroline, Russell and Alan dig into the culinary heritage of the Sonoran Desert—and just what parts of the prickly pear cactus are edible.

E46: Art and the Historical “Folk Hero”

Artist Thom Ross has had a lifelong love of American history, storytelling and painting. Not surprisingly, his art focuses on the “folk hero,” like Billy the Kid, rather than on the mythical “folk hero,” like Paul Bunyan. Thom chats with Russell and Alan from Due West, his studio in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

E45: The Greatest Gambling Story Ever Told

When he was sixteen years old, Mark Paul snuck into the Santa Ana racetrack and was smitten. Over decades, Paul traveled the world attending horse races and placing bets. But no bet was bigger and more dangerous than the one placed in Tijuana on the Derby. Paul joins Russell and Alan to share his Seabiscuit meets Narcos adventure.

E44: The Real and Imagined West with Stuart Rosebrook

The West endures in the archives of museums and libraries. It also endures in novels and movies. Historian Stuart Rosebrook chats with Alan and Russell about some of the great writers and film makers, as well as the real characters and events, that inform us about the West then and now.

E43: Black Cowboy Rodeo Heroes

They ride horses, rope calves, buck broncos, ride and fight bulls, and even wrestle steers. They are Black cowboys, and the legacies of their pursuits intersect with those of America’s struggle for racial equality, human rights, and social justice. Journalist and author Keith Ryan Cartwright joins Russell and Alan to talk about his timely and fascinating upcoming book “Black Cowboys of Rodeo: Unsung Heroes from Harlem to Hollywood and the American West.”

E42: Ranch Pets: From Horses to Javelinas

May is National Pet Month! And don’t we love our pets. Russell and Alan share some of their favorite pet stories with guests at White Stallion Dude Ranch. A little hawk named Sylvester. Two javelinas named Sandra and Ann. And dogs, horses, and more. If you love animals (or just some great stories) join in!

E41: Cowboy Poetry with Doris Daley

Doris Daley is a renowned cowboy poet, emcee and humorist—or as she prefers, a “western poet.” Her 20-year performance career includes appearances with the Reno Philharmonic Orchestra, the Smithsonian Folklife Festival and the Saskatchewan Opera Company. Doris joins Russell and Alan from Alberta, Canada to share her wordsmithing and love of the West. It’s a cowboy celebration of National Poetry Month.

E40: Jim Jones: Singer, Songwriter, Storyteller

Sometimes nothing lifts the heart and soul like a good western tune. Jim Jones has plenty of them—and plenty have won prestigious awards. He joins Russell and Alan to talk about his career as a solo musician and a member of the trio The Cowboy Way and as an author of western novels. He even has his guitar within reach. Give a listen!

E39: Mustang Saviors: Inspiring New Documentary

Director and producer David Glossberg never anticipated making a documentary about wild mustangs and military vets. But when he learned about the high suicide rate of veterans and how wild mustangs have been helping that rate decrease, he felt called to action. The result: Mustang Saviors, an award-winning film that, as you’ll discover in this episode, will lift your spirit and renew your hope.

E38: The Authentic Western Life

Mark Bedor returns to the ranch to talk all things western. Mark is the host and director of the TV show, “Today’s Wild West,” a half-hour magazine show that combines his experience as a television news anchor and reporter with his love of the West. Winner of a 2021 Western Heritage Award, “Today’s Wild West” airs on over 70 PBS channels.

E37: Writing the Frontier with Nancy E. Turner

Arizona author Nancy E. Turner started college when her children were full-grown. After earning a triple major in creative writing, music and studio art from the University of Arizona, Turner went on to become a bestselling author of many novels. She joins Russell and Alan to talk about her new novel “Light Changes Everything,” which Publisher’s Weekly describes as a “satisfying, immersive, and often heart-pounding tale of one indomitable young woman’s frontier life, touched by tragedy and hope.”

E36: Military Wives: Women Who Helped Settle the Frontier

In honor of Women’s History Month, award-winning author and historian Jan Cleere joins Russell and Alan to discuss her new book Military Wives in Arizona Territory: A History of Women Who Shaped the Frontier. Most of these women journeyed from the East and knew little of the hardships and challenges waiting in the Arizona Territory. But these brave, bold women persevered and left a legacy that endures today.

E35: Horse Crazy in NYC and Around the World

Sarah Maslin Nir, a Pulitzer-prize winning journalist and New York Times reporter, fell in with horses by age two. But growing up in New York City meant horses weren’t readily accessible. Maslin Nir speaks with Russell and Alan about how she managed to seek out horses throughout her life and how those equine relationships sustained and healed her, a journey she relates in her new memoir Horse Crazy: The Story of a Woman and a World in Love with an Animal.

E34: Cowboy, Horse Lover, and Raconteur: Randall Dale

What happens when three cowboys get together? Well, the stories start to flow, especially when all three were raised on Arizona ranches, are horse lovers to the core, and have written books about their adventures. So refill that coffee and settle in for an entertaining and enlightening conversation between Russell, Alan and their guest Randall Dale.

E33: Learning the Language of Horses

Anna Twinney communicates with horses on a daily basis. The founder and owner of the Reach Out to Horses® program, Twinney takes horsemanship to a new level using body language, energy work, animal communication and other healing modalities. She joins Russell and Alan to share her experiences and insights gleaned while working with horses and horse lovers from around the world.

E32: What’s the News in Loveland, CO?

Sylvan Dale Guest Ranch. Grass-fed cattle. Cutting-edge land conservation. Award-winning historical novel trilogoy. All good things, and all connected to the energy, passion and creativity of David M. Jessup. Give a listen as Russell and Alan chat with David about his many accomplishments on the front range of the beautiful, bold Rocky Mountains.

E31: Lynn Downey: Author, Archivist, and Authentic “Dudine”

Although Lynn Downey was raised around cowboys and horses, she never inherited the horse gene. Instead, she got the love-of-western-history gene. Russell and Alan chat with Lynn about her career curating and archiving for museums and businesses and writing award-winning books about dude ranching, Levi Strauss & Co, Sonoma, CA, Wickenburg, AZ and more!

E30: Tucson, AZ: Not Just for Horse Lovers

Over the past decade, Tucson has become a literary hub. The Old Pueblo is now home to the Tucson Festival of Books, the 3rd largest book festival in the country. Hundreds of talented writers, including National Book Award finalists and Pulitzer Prize winners, live in Tucson and the surrounding southern Arizona area. Lynn Wiese Sneyd, author, literary consultant to the Tucson book fest, and all-around book nerd, joins Alan and Russell to talk team penning, publishing, and, of course, books.

E29: What Really Happened in Tombstone?

On October 26, 1881, a gunfight between a group of lawmen and outlaw cowboys occurred at the O.K. Corral in Tombstone, AZ. It lasted all of 30 seconds. The infamous shootout has been the basis for books, movies, and TV shows. And yet, controversy remains over what really happened. Bestselling author Tom Clavin, whose newest book is “Tombstone: The Earp Brothers, Doc Holliday, and the Vendetta Ride From Hell,” joins Russell and Alan to shed light on this landmark event.

E28: Loop Rawlins, World Renown Trick Roper

Tucson native Loop Rawlins is one of the most versatile western performers in the world today. His act of trick roping, whip cracking and fancy gun spinning thrilled audiences in Vegas  and national sports stadiums, at corporate and private events, and even on America’s Got Talent. Meet this fascinating talent who is keeping the spirit of the West alive.

E27: Meet the Inimitable Bob Boze Bell

He’s an illustrator, an author, a storyteller extraordinaire. He’s written a book about Wyatt Earp and three books about Billy the Kid. He grew up in Kingman, AZ along Route 66 and currently is the owner and editor of True West Magazine. There is only one Bob Boze Bell, and it’s time you meet him.

E26: Guns of the Old West

Russell and Alan chat with two gun experts and historians. From the pioneer days through the Civil War into the 20th century, the evolution of guns is fascinating. This episode is sure to leave you with a new appreciation of the guns used in western movies. (Can you name the gun featured in Silverado, True Grit, Dances with Wolves, Legends of the Fall, and How the West was Won?)

E25: It’s Here! It’s Here! It’s a New Year!

Turn the calendar. Open the gate. And say hello to 2021! Russell and Alan review the challenges of the past year and also challenges they’ve faced in the past. What does it take to get through tough times, as well as prepare for a ride into new pastures, hopefully greener ones? Sometimes cowboys know best.

E24: The Equus Film & Arts Festival Rides Again!

Lisa Diersen, Founder and Executive Director of the EQUUS Film & Arts Festival, and associate Julianne Neal make a virtual tour stop at the ranch to speak with Alan and Russell. Every horse has a story, and it’s the mission at the EQUUS Film & Arts Fest to share those stories through film, art and literature. No matter what your interest is in horses—dressage, equine therapy, saving wild mustangs, trail riding, or simply loving a horse—the festival has something for you.

E23: Meet Marshall Trimble: The Will Rogers of Arizona

He’s an author, songwriter, storyteller, performer, cowboy, college prof, and Arizona’s own state historian. As the Arizona Historical Foundation’s executive director says, “His homespun wit and unassuming demeanor often serve as a smokescreen to his incisive talents in the scholarly arena.” You’re in for a treat because you’re about to meet Marshall Trimble.

E22: Holiday Traditions, Celebrations & Libations in the Old West

‘Tis the season to celebrate, even in these crazy, strange times. But how have holiday celebrations evolved over the decades? Culinary and western historian Sherry Monahan chats with Alan and Russell about what Christmas and other holidays looked like on the Victorian western frontier. Differences? Yes. But traditions remain!

E21: Where Cowboys and Celebrities Converge

Alan and Russell talk with guest Bill Markley, a western writer and history buff, whose experience with Hollywood’s silver screen began where Alan’s left off. And to think, it all happened in South Dakota. Can you guess the topic? Tune in to find out!

E20: Cowboy Hats: Icons of the West

Few westerners know hats better then master hatter Jimmy Harrison, fondly known as Jimmy “the hat man.” He’s been shaping and cutting down hats since he was young and in rodeo with his buddies. Eventually, he became the owner of Double H Custom Hat Company in Darby, MT and Wickenburg, AZ, where he creates and manufacturers hats for customers worldwide. Jimmy joins Russell and Alan to share the secrets of cowboy hat making.  

E19: Extraordinary Women of the Old West

Russell and Alan chat with historian and author Chris Enss. Some of the most famous names in history, not to mention film and pop culture, populate her 40+ books. Her newest book is “No Place for a Woman: The Struggle for Suffrage in the Wild West.” Learn more about Chris at

E18: Remembering John Wayne

In 1907 in the small town of Winterset, Iowa, Marion Robert Morrison was born. As an adult, he would change his name to John Wayne. A Hollywood legend, Wayne remains an integral part of western film and culture. Russell and Alan chat with Brian Downes, the executive director of the John Wayne Birthplace and Museum. Tune in to their conversation now! As The Duke would say, “We’re burning daylight.”

E17: When Life Is Stranger than Fiction

On a ranch, the unexpected is just part of life. You might say it’s the expected. From quirky individuals who move in as neighbors to horse wrecks and pickup wrecks, the unanticipated flavors ranch life with the kick of a habanero pepper flavoring hot sauce. Russell and Alan share stories that they’ll never forget, and neither will you!

E16: A Travel Writer’s Take on Awesome Arizona

Roger Naylor, an award-winning travel writer, avid hiker, and road trip junkie, joins Russell and Alan. Roger has been exploring and delighting in the Grand Canyon since he moved from Ohio to attend Northern Arizona University four decades ago. His scope of knowledge wows the two lifelong Arizonans. Check out Roger’s new book “Arizona’s Scenic Roads and Hikes: Unforgetable Journeys in the Grand Canyon State.

E15: Cooking and Conversation on the Ranch and Over the Range

Russell and Alan enjoy learning from one another and sharing stories. One question remains. Should Alan’s blue-ribbon beef jerky be renamed?

E 14: Captured on Camera

Wild horses tend to be a shy bunch, but for photographer Jan Drake, they are beautiful and fascinating subjects. Jan joins Alan and Lynn Wiese Sneyd to talk about her experiences out on the range both as photographer and as a volunteer for the Intermountain Wild Horse and Burros program and Wild Horses of America Foundation. Jan’s new book is “Wild Horses of the West,” a coffee table collection of over 200 photos of wild horses.

E13: Dude Ranching DNA

Dude rancher Russell True and cowboy H. Alan Day team up in Tucson, Arizona to talk all things Western. They’ll share adventures from the range, from the seat of a plane’s cockpit, from the back of a horse. (You may wonder how they lived to tell their tales!) And they’ll have a roundup of guests, Western writers, horse lovers, chuckwagon chefs, ranchers, nature lovers. It’s the West now and then.!

E12: Gotta Love Your Mentors

Ever have a mentor who impacted your life, a person who you’ll remember forever? Russell and Alan reflect on their mentors and offer up some inspiration and lessons to help us get through these crazy times. They also talk about being mentors and paying it forward. If you have a mentoring story you’d like to share, email us at and we’ll get it posted on our social media.

E11: How Many Hats Can A Cowboy Wear? Ask Ross Knox

Ross Knox learned about life from the saddle. A wrangler, mule packer, leather braider, and renown cowboy poet, Knox offers up some western adventures, along with a few inspiring poems. And it’s not everyone who has a song written about them, but Knox lays claim to that one, too!

E10: Veterans, Their Families & Wild Mustangs

Deborah Plum, co-founder of Base Camp for Veterans, Inc., and Jeff Cook, wild mustang trainer at Dream Horse AZ, join Russell and Alan to talk about the unique program being offered to veterans and their families. At the center of the program: wild mustangs, those four-legged creatures capable of helping us grow and transform.

E9: The Lady Who Led the Way

Alan shares more stories about his sister, Sandra Day O’Connor, the woman who started Stanford at age 16, graduated from law school at 22, found her way to the Arizona legislature and eventually to Washington, D.C. A most timely conversation. 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, guaranteeing women the constitutional right to vote. Many women opened doors and paved the way for Justice O’Connor, and she in turn opened doors for future generations of women.

E8: The Making of a Supreme Court Justice

Ranch life is not the easiest. One thing it does, however, is build character. Alan reflects on how being raised on a cattle ranch in the hard-scrabble, high desert of Arizona influenced his sister, Sandra Day O’Connor, the first woman nominated and confirmed to the United States Supreme Court.

E7: Diana Madaras and the Spirit of Western Art

Award-winning artist Diana Madaras is equally well known for her bold, colorful Southwest art as for her generous charitable giving. Diana owns Madaras Gallery in Tucson, Arizona, which features her work, and is president of the non-profit Art for Animals Foundation, a charity she founded in 1999 to help abused, injured, and orphaned animals. Voted Tucson’s Best Visual Artist nine times, she has been featured in national magazines, as well as  television shows produced by NBC, CBS and PBS affiliates. Diana joins Russell and Alan at White Stallion Ranch, where she frequently sets up her easel and paints.

E6: Celebrate “The National Day of the Cowboy”

Guest host Lynn Wiese Sneyd talks with Bethany Braley, the executive director and publisher of National Day of the Cowboy, a non-profit dedicated to preserving pioneer heritage and cowboy culture. Saturday, July 25, 2020 marks the 16th annual celebration of National Day of the Cowboy, and the start of another year supporting western artists, photographers, writers, filmmakers, and cowboys and cowgirls across the country. This is one fantastic group!

E5: Training, Adopting & Saving Wild Horses

Russell and Alan talk with horse whisperer and author of Lessons from Horses Randy Helm about the future of America’s wild horses. Alan shares how he came to start the first government-sponsored wild horse sanctuary in South Dakota and the tragic request issued one day by the Bureau of Land Management. Learn more about Alan’s experiences in his award-winning memoir The Horse Lover: A Cowboy’s Quest to Save the Wild Mustangs.

E4: Wild Horses and Inmates—Partners in Prison

Russell and Alan invite Randy Helm to the ranch. An experienced horse whisperer, Randy is the supervisor of the Wild Horse Inmate Program (WHIP) at the Arizona State Program. This incredibly successful program takes wild horses out of captivity and puts them in the hands of men who are in captivity, but who are eager for the opportunity to train the animals. A truly win-win situation – and these days, don’t we need to hear stories like this one. For more information about Randy and WHIP, visit here.

E3: For the Love of Horses

Chess is a game. Tennis is a sport. But horse riding is an adventure. So let’s go to the ranch and hear Russell and Alan who have over 100 years of experience and stories about loving, caring, grieving and riding horses. These two cowboys will move your spirit, touch your heart, and maybe even bring a tear or two! There isn’t a better way to spend the next half hour of your life than to just to listen right here.

E2: True Tales of the West with Guest Mark Bedor

Russell and Alan chat with guest Mark Bedor, an avid horseman who wears many hats. Writer, photographer, news reporter, anchor, producer, author, musician and host of the TV show “Today’s Wild West” — Mark has done it all. Check out the Quigley shoot, the sentimental meaning of spurs, and one of the most important cowboy mantras. Ears on… this one’s for you!

E1: Raised a Cowboy, Always a Cowboy

Meet Russell True and Alan Day, two cowboys who’ve lived big lives in big spaces. Russell grew up on White Stallion Dude Ranch in Tucson, AZ. Alan was raised on Lazy B, a 200,000-acre cattle ranch straddling the high deserts of Arizona and New Mexico. What was it like to grow up with cowboys and horses and make a hand by age five? Find out here as Russell and Alan share some high-tale, horse lovin’ adventures.

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