Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Women of the West – Timmy Lyn DeLong

Interview and photograph by JENNIFER DENISON

 In Northern Nevada, the name DeLong is well-established in ranching and horse roping circles—even for a cowgirl.

A FIFTH-GENERATION northern Nevadan of ranching and Basque heritage, Timmy Lyn DeLong lives and works on her family’s cow-calf operation in Imlay, where they raise Charolais-cross cows and DeBrukyer Charolais bulls. She not only is involved in the day-to-day operations, but also manages the records and finances. She has been on the winning team-branding team at the prestigious Elko County Fair 10 times, and she and her younger sister, Rita, are the only women to have won the Jordan Valley Big Loop.
ALL OF MY dad’s siblings still ranch. There are nine of us in my generation, and most of us still ranch.
THE ONLY TIME I left Nevada was for five years to attend the University of Montana in Missoula. The only reason I went there was because I could college rodeo as a walk-on.
I WILL DO about everything on the ranch except climb to the top of the windmill.
WE KEEP OUR cattle outside in the winter and summer them by the Humbolt River. We have to feed hay maybe once every five years if we get a lot of snow. We have a lot of cheat-grass in the high desert. I don’t care what anyone else says, where there’s good cheat-grass, there’s fat cattle. We run eight to 10 windmills with a submergible pump in the bottom of each. All we do in the winter is pump water, while in other areas of Nevada all the ranchers do is feed cattle.
WHEN MY SISTER and I won the Jordan Valley Big Loop [in 2004], she had just graduated from the University of Nevada’s law school on Friday, and we won the Big Loop on Sunday. It was a crazy few days. I hauled the horse trailer from Nevada to Jordan Valley, Oregon, on Thursday, so we’d have a place to stay. Then I flew to Las Vegas to watch her graduate. She, her husband and I arrived back in Jordan Valley at 2 a.m. on Saturday. Dad showed up Sunday morning with the horses. She’s an amazing header. She won on a borrowed horse, with her husband’s rope.

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