Joe Guy calls himself one of the world’s last longriders.
The Australian horseman has ridden 6,500 miles across his home country as well as 3,000 miles across the United States, and is now making his way across Canada, “chasing his dream” over the last 20 years.
What makes him particularly remarkable is that he doesn’t have a horse that he has trained from a foal. He instead finds horses that are going to slaughter on his way, “fixes them” and rides them until he finds another one to fix.
“I’ve never had a horse I couldn’t fix,” he said. “I give myself seven days to fix a new horse in, and I can always do it.
“I’ve saved hundreds of lives. Not just horses, but people who would have been injured by the wild horses.”
Joe grew up in Sydney, Australia, and found himself getting into trouble on the city streets.
“I was a city kid, stealing cars and getting on the wrong side of the law,” he said. “At 17 I turned my life around, joined a gym and took up martial arts. Then I bought a couple of horses and headed off into the outback for two years and that was it.”
Joe rides with just his horse and the basic essentials. He doesn’t use a packhorse and doesn’t even take a bed with him.
“I try to find barns to sleep in,” he said. “And I never accept an offer of a bed. I always sleep with my horse.”
With a lot of time to think, Joe has found himself writing music that he describes as “cowboy songs” and has now put together tales from his riding adventures into a book, ‘Just Another Dream.’ He hopes to become a motivational speaker and visit schools to encourage kids to stay away from a life of crime.
He will be reading from his book, playing songs and telling tales at a couple of free shows in Fernie this week. Stop by Freshies on Friday or Saturday nights at 6:30 p.m. His book and CD will be for sale.