Old Vaquero Sayings

“Before you give up, think of the reason you held on so long.”


“My favorite state has not yet been invented. It will be called Montana, and it will be perfect.” —Abraham Lincoln

“It’s funny, leaving a place, ain’t it?” he said. “You never do know when you’ll get back.” —Larry McMurtry, Lonesome Dove

“I have said that Texas is a state of mind, but I think it is more than that. It is a mystique closely approximating a religion.” —John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America

“The lessons of impermanence taught me this: loss constitutes an odd kind of fullness; despair empties out into an unquenchable appetite for life.”  —Gretel Ehrlich, The Solace of Open Spaces

“God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand tempests and floods. Even so, God cannot save them from fools.” —John Muir


John Muir (1838-1914) is considered one of America’s—and the world’s —greatest conservationists. Courtesy of Library of Congress


“Only the mountain has lived long enough to listen objectively to the howl of the wolf.”  —Aldo Leopold

“There are some things you don’t ask a man. Not if you respect him. He’s entitled to stake his claim to what he considers private to himself alone.” —Jack Schaefer, Shane

“There is a great independence, and a confident immunity to risk, in all drinks made out of cactus” —Alan Le May, The Searchers


Alan Le May’s 1954 novel The Searchers was adapted for the big screen, and the John Ford-directed film starring John Wayne is considered one of the greatest Westerns ever produced. “The Searchers: A Novel” Cover Courtesy Harper & Brothers


“The world is little, people are little, human life is little. There is only one big thing—desire.” —Willa Cather, The Song of the Lark

“Another fall, another turned page: there was something of jubilee in that annual autumnal beginning, as if last year’s mistakes had been wiped clean by summer.” —Wallace Stegner, Angle of Repose

“Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of the earth.” —Henry David Thoreau, Walden

“I’m sorry—this is literally my first rodeo.”

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