In a Sow’s Ear |

In a Sow’s Ear

“Legacy” might be expressed as the heritage that was handed down to us from forebearers as well as the traditions and values we will bequeath to future generations.

Recently I received a “legacy” in the mail in the form of a CD. It’s a collection of poems and songs that reflect a unique daily life most of us will never experience.

Sandy and her husband Scott own and operate Black Mountain Outfitters, a wilderness and ranch outfitting business. In summer, they earn their keep by running camps that take greenhorn folks into the mountains and introduce them to Nature’s glory. When not herding dudes, Black Mountain Outfitters guide hunters to stalk the wily wild deer, moose, elk and lion.

Is that enough for a lifestyle? Not quite. They also raise registered Redbone hound dogs as well as Airedale dogs. They breed, raise and train horses and mules, buy and sell riding and pack mules; they’re photographers of wildlife ” is that enough for an “everyday life”? Not quite.

Besides being a true daughter of the west in love with the grandeur of Nature, Sandy’s tales of outdoor adventures, history, animals and people of the west have been featured in a string of magazines and newspapers. Is that enough to fill out a “lifestyle”? Not quite.

Sandy Seaton Sallee is in demand as a top “cowboy” poet at Gatherings from the National Gathering in Elko, Nev., to Canadian locales. She just finished recording a collection of poems and songs which she titled ” appropriately”Montana Legacy.

You get goose bumps listening to the opening poem/song “Wind”. Listening, you can almost see the tree limbs quiver in the wind; feel the gentle draft or whipping gust as the mountain zephyrs take charge.

Laugh with her when she buys a “bargain” horse, then spends a fortune on training, doctoring and finally “doubling” her investment.

Mountain Madness can bring tears when the words sweep you into the mind of a woman driven mad at the gruesome deaths of husband and children.

Ever thought about how to drive several mules at once? Most of us in these days are proud if we can drive a single horse pulling a wimpy cart. Go with Sandy when, as a feisty youngster and against all advice, she decided to hitch up six mules. She survived. The mules did, too.

A frisson of warmth will snake up your spine when Sandy tells of Grandma’s Gift ” a tribute to her 95-year-old Grandmother who gave her the legacy-gift of spirit, love, and laughter.

Ride with Sandy when she takes three teen-age girls on a pack trip along with 11 assorted breeds of dogs and a young horse spooks. Dogs, horses and girls have a hilarious dust-up. (Sandy turns out to be the only one who finds the whole sequence hilarious).

If you want to know how it feels to be a western gal tangled up in a City Mall, you’ll get a chuckle out of Sandy’s poem, Hangin’ Out.

In some of her poems, Sandy sings songs. She warbles in pure throaty tones which background the story she is telling. In Rider, you’ll hear I Ride An Old Paint and you’ll learn and identify with why she so loves the west and the outdoors. In Code of the West, you will hear history and the respect for the traditions of the west interspersed with the throbbing notes of Amazing Grace.

Craig Hall, a brilliant Bozeman, Montana concert guitarist, plays background music which strokes and complements Sandy’s verses and songs.

Sandy Seaton Sallee is a true Montana Legacy.

Sandy can be contacted at: Montana Legacy CD: Black Mountain Outfitters, P.O. Box 117, Emigrant, Mont., 59027; or by e-mail at


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