The Best of Western Horseman Awards are finally here.
A rancher’s homestead is their pride and joy. It’s where their livestock thrives, where their crops are grown, where their family gathers, where they work and where they rest. When we invest in quality materials from the start, the longevity of the products and the efficiency of their use speaks for itself. Quality, longevity and efficiency are pillars the 2023 Western Horseman Best of Home and Ranch winners can definitely stand on.
Best of Trailers Winner: Elite Trailers
Elite Trailers specializes in manufacturing custom aluminum horse trailers and livestock trailers. They offer horse trailers, stock trailers, stock combo trailers and semi-trailers promising superior craftsmanship and rugged toughness. A standout trailer at Elite is their Gooseneck Mustang LQ Horse Trailer, which is the ultimate ride for Western enthusiasts and their horses. The trailer is available in two- to four-horse models and, among other features, includes a dinette, air conditioner, ducted heat, microwave, refrigerator, large bathroom with radius shower and enough storage for long trips on the rodeo road.
Best of Trailers Runner-Up: Bloomer Trailers
Bloomer is one of the most recognizable brands in rodeo. They are the official trailer of the Professional Cowboys Rodeo Association, the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, the National High School Rodeo Association, the National Reined Cow Horse Association, The American Rodeo, the Pendleton Round-Up and more. Bloomer trailers have unique features, many of which were pioneered by the Bloomer team themselves, such as integrated hay pods. Perhaps the most impressive thing about Bloomer is their dedication to getting it right. Founder and CEO Randy Bloomer even rode in the horse compartments of the trailer to measure the vibration and determine ways to make a faster, safer, more comfortable ride for your horses.
Best of Trailers Honorable Mention: Sundowner Trailers
Sundowner offers a trailer for every passion and project, but their livestock trailers are a great choice for the Western enthusiast. They offer five options in the Rancher line of trailers, which come in different sizes and features depending on your needs. They can also custom-build any trailer you can come up with, so you get each feature you want and need. Their living quarters come in three floor plans: Santa Fe, Horizon and Special Edition. Each one has a beautiful interior and special features that make them feel like home.
Best of Equipment Winner: Bekaert Fencing
Bekaert Fencing is a world market and technology leader in steel wire transformation and coating technologies. Based in Belgium, the fencing giant has nearly 29,000 employees across the world and just under 1,500 in the United States. They are the world’s largest independent manufacturer of drawn steel wire products. While you know them as the name on your wire fence, Bekaert products can be found in many different products around your ranch — their products are likely used to create the tires on your equipment and in the steel bars beneath your concrete.
Best of Equipment Runner-Up: Priefert
The story of the Priefert family is one of great interest. Marvin Priefert was running his family farm with his brothers when he joined the Navy to serve in World War II. When he returned, he brought back ideas to introduce new equipment into their farming practices to make them more efficient. He and his brothers bought a bulldozer, something Priefert had seen while in active duty, and he built a plow to pull behind it. Not long after, Priefert settled his family in east Texas and shifted his focus from farming to ranching, where he created the first gliding action, fully opening headgate. He patented his invention and began to sell it, dividing his time between raising cattle and building his headgates. The Priefert family grew and so did their equipment empire, which is now run by Priefert’s son and grandsons. Their roping chutes, bucking chutes and complete line of products for the rodeo market has made them a household name among rodeo enthusiasts and the first choice in equipment for ranchers.
Best of Equipment Honorable Mention: John Deere
It’s hard to imagine a farm or ranch without picturing a John Deere tractor rolling through an alfalfa field. The iconic bright green and yellow set the bar for ranching and farming equipment and is still the trusted source for cowboys to get the job done. With an expansive variety of products for every farming or ranching need, John Deere has been and continues to be the one-stop shop for tractors, mowers, side-by-sides, harvesting equipment, building machinery and more.
Best of Furniture and Décor Winner: Paseo Road by HiEnd Accents
HiEnd Accents believes that our homes should be a reflection of ourselves. Their customers were in need of quality rustic bedding, and HiEnd delivered. Their approach is simple but purposeful: Inspired designs, quality materials and fair prices. They have built a loyal customer base and have established themselves as a leading creator of designer bedding and décor for all styles. HiEnd is a family-owned business based in Irving, Texas.
Best of Furniture and Décor Runner-Up: Pendleton Woolen Mills
Pendleton is one of the most iconic brands in Western culture. Their high-quality products represent not only luxury apparel and décor, but a way of life. They are the priority stop when visiting the Pendleton Round-Up, and their exquisite wool patterns are recognized across the rodeo circuit. Pendleton is sixth-generation family- owned and their products are built to last. Pendleton wool truly never goes out of style — they are one of the few makers in Western culture that connects generations.
Best of Furniture and Décor Honorable Mention: El Paso Saddleblankets
What began as an operation selling Mexican saddle blankets and turquoise jewelry out of the back of a pickup truck has become the world’s largest southwest trading post. Dusty and Bonnie Henson opened an import-export business in El Paso, Texas, after realizing the interest and demand for Dusty’s or their high-quality rugs. Now they have expanded to offer other décor products such as blankets and throws, pillow covers, bedding, purses and more. The quality of these pieces is undeniable and it’s a brand recognizable throughout Western culture for its unique craftsmanship.
Best of Barn Builders Winner: Morton Buildings
The history of Morton Buildings is rich and one of perseverance. The legacy behind the brand is rooted in determination to succeed, no matter the circumstances. The brand has set itself apart in many ways, but at their core, customer satisfaction is an obvious and absolute priority. Morton is 100% employee-owned, meaning every member of their team has a vested interest in providing the highest quality product and the best service to their customers. It also ensures a plan for successful longevity for the company — thankfully for consumers, Morton is here to stay for a very long time. Morton has been building for more than 120 years on the pillars of their durable materials, caring employees and a warranty that can’t be bested. When you are considering the space your horses will spend for a majority of their time, you want to have peace of mind that it will be well-made, hold up against the elements and look great on your property. Morton checks those boxes and more.
Best of Barn Builders Runner-Up: JAG Metals
JAG Metals is a metal supplier with multiple locations in North Texas, specializing in weld-up and bolt-up engineered metal building packages, metal building components and structural steel fabrication services for general contractors, architectural and engineer firms, construction companies and DIY homeowners. The company is relatively young, having launched in 2015, but it’s quickly become a trusted source for steel services from the ranching fence to the barndominium to hybrid metal building offices and more. JAG truly covers every nuanced detail of your metal building needs without cutting corners, and their quality products speak for themselves.
Best of Barn Builders Honorable Mention: Boss Hog Barndominiums
The barndominium floorplans offered by Boss Hog look like something straight out of Yellowstone, Montana. The variety of customizations and unique features of their metal buildings create a completely personalized space, no matter your needs. They service all 50 states, and their website is the perfect spot to browse floor plans and dream of your perfect ranch oasis. While you’re browsing, you have to look at “The Signature” floorplan, which features a 3 Bed/2 Bath, threestory layout with a two-car garage. The covered patio is a dream for lovers of the outdoors, and the modern farmhouse design makes this plan a No. 1 choice for many.
Best of Automotive and Off-Road Winner: Ford F-Series
Ford introduced the F-Series, a series of light-duty trucks, in 1948. The series includes the F-150, the most popular version of the model line which is now in its 14th generation. Since 1977, the F-Series has remained the best-selling pickup truck line in the United States and has been the highest-selling vehicle overall since 1981. The 14th and current generation of the truck features revised exterior panels and a variety of powertrains, including a hybrid option. The six-speed engine was swapped for a 10-speed automatic. The front seats fold flat, and the touch screen on the dash has increased in size. The King Ranch and the Raptor are two special additions to the Ford Series that have seen a lot of interest and success in recent years. The King Ranch edition has a trim package that is immediately recognizable. It has unique aesthetic attributes, with a bold, two-tone paint scheme with primary colors and distinctive King Ranch “Caribou” accents. The King Ranch brand is featured on the truck’s interior and exterior. This series is the ultimate ride for the cowboy and rancher.
Best of Automotive and Off-Road Runner-Up: Ram Pickup
The Ram Pickup, previously marketed as the Dodge Ram, is a full-size truck manufactured by Stellantis North America (formerly Chrysler). The current Ram is the truck’s fifth generation and was debuted in 2018. Ram trucks have been named Motor Trend magazine’s Truck of the Year eight times, and the current version became the only truck in the world to win the award three separate times in 2019, 2020 and 2021.
Best of Automotive and Off-Road Honorable Mention: Polaris
Polaris has become the go-to brand for getting around the ranch. It’s more luxe and nimbler than its competition, creating more of a hybrid-feel between utility and luxury. The Ranger is the star of the show at Polaris, boasting plenty of room for the whole family to ride without sacrificing utility space for feed, hay, supplies and more. It has an impressively smooth drive train which makes getting through pastures and down gravel roads significantly more enjoyable.