After stints of travel, Texas horseman now operating guest ranch near Dubois

Jul 20, 2017 From staff reports

Chris Cox had traveled the U.S. and Australia before deciding to set up his new operation in Fremont County.

When Chris Cox speaks, his long-term Texan residency is evident, but it doesn't take long for the ear to pick up on the occasional "o" or "r" pronounced with an Australian lean to it. Shortly thereafter, the Wyoming-isms and dedication to the Western way of life surface.

His voice, both in meter and in subject matter, pair with his trajectory, which brought him from Texas to Australia to Texas again and, as of this summer, the Triangle C guest ranch west of Dubois.

Cox has created a name for himself among the equestrians of the world as the best: he trains horses and people to understand one another and enjoy their partnerships. For decades, he has based his horsemanship business in Texas, complete with his own RFD-TV channel. Operating out of the South, however, required him to travel extensively during the hottest part of the year.

"The summers where I live are awful hot, and the clientele are not going to come to me," Cox explained.

Having grown weary of fighting the pull between home and career, Cox found Fremont County to be the solution.

"This idea has been one of mine for many years," he said of purchasing a guest ranch in the milder climate of the Rocky Mountain West and inviting clients to a more comfortable setting to surround their educational experiences.

Because he will be based in Fremont County full time with his family, he will be side-by-side with his wife, children, horses, and staff for three uninterrupted months. The clinics Cox now provides at the Triangle C are the same caliber Cox and his staff have always offered, but they are tailored to fit into a larger guest-ranch experience.

"They're half-day clinics," Cox said. "We did that because if they come here with their families, we want them to go out and fly-fish or go sightseeing, go into town, go to the rodeo, or take a nap. I don't want it to be a grind."

This shift doesn't seem to diminish interest in his in-person instruction. In fact, staying in one place all summer long will make Cox more available to interested students, as well as to his family.

"We are finding that we are getting horse people that are coming for vacations," Cox observed of the first season's bookings.

But the saddle-inclined are not the only travelers Cox is inviting to Triangle C. His first group of guests was a boys' horsemanship leadership camp, followed immediately by a girls' horsemanship leadership camp.

Cox said he focuses on providing a principled approach to hospitality for families who travel to the Triangle C with their children, as well as for and couples or individuals.

"If a guest or family comes here, I could go out and do a demonstration, which I'm paid quite a bit of money to go out and do in different parts of the world, but I want to offer them something special here," he said. "I want to be sure this is a really special experience for them."

An enjoyable experience is a priority for Cox, whether a guest is a dedicated rider or not.

His entire staff is dedicated to the horse, and his wranglers are his interns and apprentices. Education and the horse are at the heart of the experience Cox has designed at the Triangle C.

"Because you can't have a good time if you're not safe. And you can't learn if you're not safe," Cox summarized. We can certainly take a child that's never ridden before or an adult that's never ridden before and make it an enjoyable, learning, and fun experience," Cox said.

He said that before they know it, they'll be embarking comfortably on a three-day pack trip into "some of the best riding in the world."

Cox has a clear vision of the wisdom he hopes young students return home with:

"With hard work dedication, and a positive attitude, you can accomplish anything you want to accomplish. But you've also got to have respect and have good relationships with people," he said.

"The most important part of doing anything in life is knowing how to build a relationship and get along with people."

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