In a world where everyone chases a life of luxury, there’s something inspiring about cowboys. The life of a cowboy isn’t defined by driving sports cars, eating at Michelin star restaurants, or flying on private planes.
It’s a lifestyle built upon tradition and simplicity. And the fact that cowboys continue to hold true to those values, even in the modern world, says a lot about their sense of pride.
In this article, we’re going to cover an extensive list of badass cowboy quotes about life, horses, goodbyes, death, and more.
Badass Cowboy Quotes About Life
Let’s start off with some badass quotes about life and the lessons that you can learn from a cowboy lifestyle.
- “A cowboy’s hands are as strong as steel, as tough as leather, but soft enough to touch a butterfly’s wing and the skin of a woman without disturbing the beauty of either.” ~ Carol Crandell
- “Some cowboys have too much tumbleweed in their blood to settle down.” ~ Ken Alstad
- “Life’s a rodeo. All you have to do is stay in the saddle.” ~ George Jung
- “An old cowboy friend o’mine told me once. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it! And if the job is too hard it’s cause you’re doin it wrong.”
- “Life is getting up one more time than you’ve been knocked down.” ~ John Wayne
- “It’s the one constant in life. You build something worth having, then someone’s gonna try and take it.” ~ John Dutton
- “Find the middle. Life is a series of extremes, but it doesn’t have to be. Try and find the middle. Work on recognizing the highs and the lows and let them be just that. Don’t give those feelings any energy, just let them pass through you, come and go.” ~ Cowboy Mckennon Kelly
- “Don’t be impressed by money, followers, degrees and titles. Be impressed by kindness, integrity, loyalty, and generosity.”
- “Arrogance is the cowboy that talks, confidence is the cowboy that shows.”
- “The only healthy way to live life is to learn to like all the little everyday things – like a sip of good whiskey in the evening, a soft bed, a glass of buttermilk, or a feisty gentleman like myself.” ~ Gus McCrae
- “Tomorrow is the most important thing in life. Comes into us at midnight very clean. It’s perfect when it arrives, and it puts itself in our hands. It hopes we’ve learned something from yesterday.” ~ John Wayne
- “A cowboy is defined by the work that he does. Any man lays claim to that name if he lives on a ranch and works–drives, brands, castrates, or nurtures – a cattleman’s herd.” ~ Blake Allmendinger
- “I’ve always followed my father’s advice: he told me, first to always keep my word and, second, to never insult anybody unintentionally. If I insult you, you can be goddamn sure I intend to. And, third, he told me not to go around looking for trouble.” ~ John Wayne
- “We have a sense that we should be like the mythical cowboy… able to take on and conquer anything and live in the world without the need for other people.” ~ Morrie Schwartz
- “You know, you did something that no one does, Rip. You’ve outlived your past.” ~ Lloyd Pierce
- “Life is a series of adjustments. I learned that from all the years I spent bronc ridin’.The bronc goes left, I had to shift right and then make counter move after counter move. It’s the same sort of shuffle and shifts with life.” ~ Cowboy McKennon Kelly
- “I have tried to live my life so that my family would love me and my friends respect me. The others can do whatever the hell they please.” ~ John Wayne
Short Cowboy Quotes That Are Badass
Here’s some more short badass cowboy quotes that embody what it’s like to be one.
- “Don’t be like the rest of them darling.” ~ Grace Kelly
- “The best sermons are lived, not preached.”
- “The best way to describe a cowboy is mud, guts, and glory.”
- “Courage is being scared to death..and saddling up anyway.” ~ John Wayne
- “Integrity is what the world’s missing now.” ~ Weldon Hawley
- “It’s 5% talent…15% skill…and 80% just hanging in there.”
- “No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle.” ~ Winston Churchill
- “Cowboys don’t take baths, they just dust off.” ~ Tornado
- “Slap some bacon on a biscuit and let’s go! We’re burnin’ daylight!”
- “A true cowboy knows love, pain, and shame, but never cares about the fame.”
- “Cowboys and men are two totally different breeds.”
- “True cowboys aren’t afraid to get dirty.” ~ Lane Frost
Badass Cowboy Quotes About Death
Enjoying this list of quotes from cowboys so far? Then let’s keep things rolling with some badass cowboy quotes about death.
- “That was the trouble with explaining with words. If you explained with gunpowder, people listened.” ~ Dean F. Wilson, Dustrunner
- “It’s a hell of a thing, killing a man. You take away all he’s got and all he’s ever gonna have.” ~ Clint Eastwood as Bill Munny
- “Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you’ll enjoy it a second time.”
- “A decent cowboy does not take what belongs to someone else and if he does he deserves to be strung up and left for the flies and coyotes.” ~ Judge Roy Bean
- “Such is the life and death of a good cowboy.” ~ Larry McMurtry
- “You see, in this world, there’s two kinds of people, my friend; those with loaded guns and those who dig. You dig.” ~ Clint Eastwood
- “Death can come for ya any place, any time. It’s never welcomed. But if you’ve done all you can do, and it’s your best, in a way I guess you’re ready for it.” ~ John Wayne
- “When my time comes, just skin me and put me up there on Trigger, just as though nothing had ever changed. ~ Roy Rogers
- “Rodeo cowboys usually keep going until they’ve crippled—injured by animals—run out of money for entry fees and travel expenses, quit or get killed in the arena. The camaraderie among them is unlike any other sport.” ~ Chris LeDoux
- “When you’re young and you fall off a horse, you may break something. When you’re my age, you splatter.” ~ Roy Rogers
- “When you stop fighting, that’s death.” ~ John Wayne
- “The best thing that you can do for death is ride off from it.”
Cowboy Quotes About Saying Goodbye
If there’s one type of movie scene that cowboys are famous for, it’s the shot of them riding off into the sunset on their horse.
So it’s only fitting that we include some badass cowboy quotes about saying goodbye on this list.
- “Oh the last goodbye’s the hardest one to say. And this is where the cowboy rides away.” ~ George Strait
- “The cowboys can rest and look at the distant mountains, the fish in the creek and the setting sun.” ~ Meg Clibbon
- “Cowboys don’t say goodbye, they say ‘see ya!’”
- “Real cowboys never run. They just ride away.”
- “When the leather is scarred, there is a great story to tell.” ~ Jimmy Tart
- “Learn this well, the last ride is never the last ride. And the end is not the end.” ~ Richard Rowland
- “A cowboy never says goodbye, it’s not in his nature.” ~ Kurt Philip Behm
- “You can take the boy out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the boy.” ~ Arthur Baer
- “Now if you think the grass is greener on the far side of the hill, / All you cowboys: take it easy, there’s no grass there at all.” ~ Chris De Burgh
Cowboy Quotes About Horses
- “There is no better place to heal a broken heart than on the back of a horse.” ~ Missy Lyons
- “No hour of life is wasted that was spent in a saddle.”
- “Any real, beautiful thing in this world shouldn’t be tamed or claimed or broken. It should be allowed to be, worked with, not against. Don’t be afraid of the wild that your horse has left. It makes her special.” ~ Cowboy Mckennon Kelly
- “You know horses are smarter than people. You never heard of a horse going broke betting on people.” ~ Will Rogers
- “The horse is a mirror into your soul. And sometimes you might not like what you see in the mirror.” ~ Buck Brannaman
- “She’ll never be all the way tame, just the way she’s made…sorta like you, I imagine.” ~ Cowboy Mckennon Kelly
- “If my horse doesn’t like you, I probably won’t either.”
- “When in doubt, let your horse do the thinkin.”
- “A cowboy is a man with guts and a horse.” ~ William James
- “Ain’t nuthin’ like ridin’ a fine horse in new country.” ~ Augustus MacCrae
- “A pony is a childhood dream. A horse is an adulthood treasure.” ~ Rebecca Carroll
- “There are many wonderful places in the world, but one of my favorite places is on the back of my horse.” ~ Rolf Kopfle
- “A horse doesn’t care how much you know until he knows how much you care. Put your hand on your horse and your heart in your hand.” ~ Pat Parelli
- “Training horses, heck riding horses, isn’t easy. Failing is a part of the process. It’s how you brush yourself off and get back in the saddle that counts the most. There’s beauty in breakdown. Everything is about balance.” ~ Carly Kade
Funny Cowboy Quotes
Let’s finish this article with some funny cowboy quotes that will lighten up your mood!
- “Find her, protect her, spoil her, dance with her and never stop loving her or someone else will.” ~ The Cowboy Way
- “What do you call a happy cowboy? A jolly rancher!”
- “If you’re going to wear a cowboy hat, you’re going to have to go all the way. You should have livestock all around you, settle all of your disputes with a pistol, and ride a horse absolutely everywhere.” ~ Tom Segura
- “It doesn’t matter if a cowboy lives in the mountainsides or in the flats, as long as it’s warm and there is a place to lay his hat.”
- “Cowboys don’t get married, unless they stop being cowboys.” ~ David Goodman
- “Generally, you ain’t learnin’ nothin when your mouth’s a-jawin’.”
- “Cowboys work hard, play well, love soft, and are hell of a lot better than any other boy.” ~ Olivia Flannery
- “Don’t worry about bitin’ off more’n you can chew; your mouth is probably a whole lot bigger’n you think.”
- “Life is tough, but it’s tougher if you’re stupid.” ~ John Wayne
- “Lettin’ the cat out of the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin’ it back.”
- “The quickest way to double your money is to fold it up and put it back in your pocket.”
- “I have a very strict gun control policy. If there’s a gun around, I want to be in control of it.” ~ Clint Eastwood
- “First buy a cowboy hat and boots. Then you’re on your way to being a texan.” ~ James A. Michener
Final Thoughts On These Badass Cowboy Quotes
Well, that wraps up this list of badass cowboy quotes!
Now you can throw on a classic Western like, “The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly” starring Clint Eastwood. Or throw it even further back and watch one of the classic Westerns starring John Wayne, who’s featured quite often on this list.
If you’re not a movie person, then throw your feet up on your chair and enjoy a nice glass of whiskey.
Your inner cowboy will be proud.
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