The Cowboy Downhill is when all the pro rodeo cowboys from the U.S.,Canada, Australia, and France hightail it from the Mile High City up to Ski Town U.S.A. for some fun on the slopes.
The event starts as a dual slalom where the cowboys, complete in chaps and cowboy hats, make their way down a slalom course, and over a jump where they then have to saddle a horse and lasso a lassie. Ray Thurston of Tabernash, Colo., won the event for the second year in a row.
The grand finale of the day is the Stampede, when all of the cowboys tear out of the top in a mass start that ends in complete chaos at the bottom, if you can even make it to the bottom in one piece. Bull rider Shawn Hogg of Odessa, Texas, was the top hog of the Stampede. Katie Hill, who is also Miss Rodeo Arizona, took the coveted Best Wreck award, which wasn't a surprise considering it was only her second time on skis.
The Cowboy Downhill is a Steamboat tradition, started 34 year ago when Steamboat's Director of Skiing, Billy Kidd, invited six-time All-Around World Champion Cowboy Larry Mahan to town for some time on the slopes. Now, the event is one of the highlights of the year at the Steamboat Ski area.
Thanks to Larry Pierce for the fun photos from Steamboat.