Horses and Hands
Rodeo roper trains both
By Jerry W. Kram
On the shore of Lake Sakakawea is a small arena surrounded by the beauty of the open country of Western Dakota. It’s out of the way, down a winding gravel road and past a gate with a cut metal sign that proudly announces, Baker Quarter Horses, Established 1964. Last weekend, the arena was filled with horses and hands, both learning their craft with PRCA Team Roper Shad Chadwick.
Chadwick is no stranger to working with ranch hands and their mounts. He was the PRCA Rookie of the Year in 1995 and has traveled from his home in Arizona to work with men, women and horses across the West for years.
"I’ve rodeoed all my life," Chadwick said. "I grew up on a ranch in Casper, Wyo., and moved to Arizona when I was younger. I rodeo and train and show horses. I’ve been on a horse since I could walk."
Lawrin Hugh Baker is no stranger to horses himself. He ranched and raised horses most of his 68 years, and is also a social worker for the Three Affiliated Tribes. Like most businesses in the Bakken, he has had his challenges finding and holding on to qualified workers to help raise and train his horses. So he hired Chadwick to help improve the skill set of Baker’s ranch hands.