While you bop through your city life, these lone cars roam the hills, sleeping with one eye open, tearing through rivers, roping loose bugs, and leaving the hot sizzle of fresh tires in their wake. Sometimes in the evening, when the empty can of beans has clattered against the rocks, you’ll hear the low howl of their ballads, casually slipping into the sunset. These are the perfect cars for navigating a maze of cactus and spitting at the notion of fences, plus they’re the perfect way to celebrate 100 years of the National Park Service, officially marked today.
Summit’s Toyota 4Runner 2010
When you’re looking for a route to the other side of the mountain, look no farther. This fresh cowboy will fearlessly lead you up and down Pike’s Peak, through winding passes, and even through city traffic, all with a signature squint and a shirt that somehow stays crisp no matter how mean the sun gets.
Adam’s Ford Mustang 1966
It’s not a true ride into the sunset without a seasoned Mustang. Whether you’re the good guy or the misunderstood anti-hero, when you bust open the saloon doors, you’ll want this one by your side. It’s true, he’s too literal to get your jokes, but his stylish look is matched only by his muscle and his intimidating growl.
Jairo’s Nissan 350Z 2007
Need a ride that does tricks? This sporty cowboy used to ride in rodeos so he’s a real showman. He’ll take the wildest roads with a little flair, and his hat in one hand. Don’t ask him how he ended up roaming the range instead — he’s a little sensitive about the bronco that got away — but he’s more than happy to lead you through the smoky late summer sun with the top down.
Camilo’s Tesla Model S 2013
This is not the terse, rough cowboy you expected. He doesn’t grunt, he doesn’t spit, and his manners are impeccable. In the morning, he eschews coffee, bacon and eggs for a kale and pineapple smoothie. He’s obsessed with the environment, which is why he prefers to live clean, amongst the sheep and dry desert mesas. He’ll dazzle you with the finest vistas in all of New Mexico, but he might judge you for throwing away your apple core instead of eating it.
Aviva’s Subaru Outback 2002
When you’re looking for a truly spiritual trip into the desert, take this cowboy out with you. His ponytail and baseball cap look may be a little off-putting at first, but it’ll grow on you. He is full of info on the healing properties of mineral pools, makes all kinds of tinctures from plants, and loves to hike into the deep heart of craggy valleys to look up and change his perspective.
Kevin’s Smart Fortwo 2012
This cowboy is incredibly optimistic, even when the rain is long overdue. But that’s okay with him, because he’s efficient and economical as all heck — makes his own jerky and sells it too. He’s been saving up to get a little ranch house, but don’t tell his friends, he doesn’t want them thinking he’s lost touch with the range.
Michael’s Ford Mustang 2013
This young, feisty cowboy will not rest until you’re impressed. He’s always running up ahead on the trail and then running back to let you know what’s coming. He’ll stop to say things like, “See that mountain over there? Went up and down it in a morning after a night of drinking.” Then he’ll do a little tongue cluck. But that’s okay, he’s pretty, rides faster than the wind, and if you encounter any rattlesnakes, you won’t be the one doing battle.
Stephen’s Hummer H2 SUT 2006
Okay, horses are awesome, but you’re not always going for lean haunches and nimble feet. Sometimes you’re looking for a rhino, sometimes you need a beast. When you want to barrel down gravel roads, tumble the tumbleweeds, and careen along rocky cliffs — with the comfort of riding on a cloud — this is the gritty cowboy that makes it happen. It’s like bringing the Hulk with you everywhere you go, except he’s not even angry, he’s just like this.
Devin’s Audi S4 2010
This moody cowboy likes to sit alone at the watering hole, tapping his boot and minding his own business. That said, he’s got a whole arsenal of skills and quick maneuvers, so whenever anyone looks like they might be in trouble, his dark shadow suddenly stretches out from behind the orange rocks, and he’s ready to be the hero. Nobody knows his name or where he comes from, but he’s a legend all the same.
Mandy’s Land Rover Range Rover Sport 2011
With panache and wit, this cowboy isn’t opposed to a little luxury. He wears chaps to keep his good jeans nice, and he sees no reason not to spend a few nights enjoying oneself at the casino on the weekends. Whether you’re looking for a smooth ride up into the mountains or a sporty ride around town, he’ll give you a little Southwestern flair and a taste of the cushy desert life.