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Cowboy Dictionary - Letter R

Back to the cowboy dictionary first page.

Please click on a letter below to search for for the definition of words,
terms, slang, and jargon used by cowboys, cowgirls, and horse lovers.

Rear - When a horse stands up on its hind legs.

In some cases, such as with trick horses, a rear can be a controlled, trained movement performed by the horse when asked for by its rider or handler.

In most other cases a rear is a wild, unpredictable movement that is dangerous for both the horse and its rider, or other people on the ground nearby.

A black horse rears with a young rider.

Horse rear

A roan horse rears above his fallen rider.

Rearing horse

Reins - Reins are a piece of equipment used for communicating with a horse while it is being ridden.

Reins are attached to the bridle and extend from the bridle to the rider's hands while the horse is being ridden. Reins are used to communicate such things to the horse as when to stop, turn, speed up, slow down, and more.

Reins can be made of leather, horsehair, nylon, or a variety of other materials. They can be one rein (that extends from one side of the bridle, over the horse's neck, and down to the other side of the bridle), or two reins (one rein on each side of the horse's neck). What reins are made of and whether or not there is one or two depends on the riding discipline and/or the personal preferences of the rider.

Below: Leather split reins (two separate reins, one on each side of the horse's neck).

Split reins

You can shop for leather split reins here.

Remuda - A group of horses on a ranch that make up the supply of riding horses for the cowboys. The term is also sometimes used to describe any group of horses put together by someone for a specific purpose. For example, some people refer to a ranch's band (group) of broodmares as a remuda.

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Return Gate - In a rodeo arena, the return gate is a gate near the bucking chutes that the broncs and bulls use to exit the arena.

That the return gate is located where it is - near the bucking chutes - is very important. Broncs and bulls that buck while covering very little ground usually buck better - and therefore earn higher scores - than those that travel down the arena. If a bronc or bull knows that the return gate is near the bucking chutes it adds to their incentive to leave the chute and buck right where they are at, close to the gate they know they're going to use to exit the arena.

On the other hand, if the broncs and bulls were to be let out of the arena through a gate at the opposite end of the arena from the bucking chutes, they would quickly learn to travel down the arena toward the far-away gate while they bucked, thereby earning lower scores for themselves and their rider.

Rodeo return gate  

Above: A bronc exits the arena through the return gate.

Rimfire - In roping, a rimfire is when the rope that runs from the mounted roper to the roped animal comes into contact with another horse(s). Rimfires are considered dangerous and most good ropers try to avoid them.

In competitive roping, the rules as to what constitutes a rimfire vary, and may be different than the definition above. Frequently, a rimfire is grounds for disqualification.

Rimfire is sometimes spelled "rim fire" (two words).

Below: The rope runs from the mounted rider, around the hindquarters of another horse, and to the roped steer on the other side. The horse between the roper and the steer is being rimfired.


CowboyWay Dictionary

Some definitions have their own page, while other definitions are included under the letter of the alphabet they begin with.


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