I remember watching cowboys deftly swing their ropes during spring branding on the family ranch. My uncle gave me an old rope to practice with and told me to go rope something. I think he was hoping I’d stay out of his hair. The poor dog was my usual catch.
There are many people who have memories like that, or those who have never picked up a rope but want to try their hand at it. I went to Badiola’s Arena in Homedale, Idaho, to see what was happening on a Wednesday night.
Matt Azevedo of Eagle is a regular at the arena and shared his philosophy and advice for those wanting to rope.
“I think a lot of people watch the National Finals Rodeo and think that roping is easy, but it’s not. There are certain steps you have to take. To be successful, it takes what’s between your ears and some ability,” said Azevedo.
Jim Rutledge, from Nampa, was also at Badiola’s and he was working from the ground roping a dummy. He told me that you have to practice a lot just swinging a rope.
Before you run out and buy a rope, go to a few ropings, talk to several ropers and you’llprobably find someone to help you. Badiola’s is just one of the many places people can go watch and learn all about roping. I tend to like it there because it’s indoors, has great seating and they serve food and beverages including beer for the thirsty. Check it out for yourself: they have a list of all their events and regular weekly ropings: www.badiolaarena.com
We’ll have more roping “how to” pointers from Buckaroos who spend all of their time on working ranches.