Myles Carlson gets an adrenaline rush as soon as he puts his hand in the riggin’.
That adrenaline, along with the aggression and the competition that comes with riding bareback, is what the Evanston freshman loves about the sport.
“My uncle was a bareback rider,” Carlson said. “I kind of just wanted to try it. I tried it, really liked it, and just kept going with it.”
And he’s been successful at it.
Carlson grew up in a rodeo family. His father, Brett, rode bulls in high school and his uncle, Travis, rode bareback. His mom, Farrah, also grew up around horses, and his brothers Waylon and Scott, have both been part of the rodeo scene. His sister, Carlee, also competes.
“My family is a rodeo family,” Myles said. “I got on my first horse when I was 4.”
Myles was a natural at bareback riding from the start.
“A lot of people say that about me,” he said.
Myles has since made a name for himself in the sport.
On Dec. 7-11 he will compete in five rounds at the Junior National Finals Rodeo at Wrangler Rodeo Arena in Las Vegas. Myles earned a spot at the competition for his performance at the 2017 Northern State Qualifier on Oct. 27-28 at the Sweetwater Events Complex in Rock Springs.
Myles has one goal when he arrives in Vegas.
“I want to win it,” he said. “I want to go hard all five rounds.”
Myles also currently leads the state in bareback riding in the Wyoming High School Rodeo Association. He won the bareback competition on Sept. 23-24 at the Wheatland rodeo and leads the state with 57.5 points — 32 more than Donny Proffit of Diamondville, who sits in second place.
The fall portion of the 2017-18 rodeo season ended on Sept. 24 in Wheatland, but points carry over to the spring season, which kicks off in April. The state high school rodeo finals are held the first weekend of June in Rock Springs and nationals takes place July 15 in Rock Spring.
“I still want to be ranked No. 1 and I want to win a state title and make it to nationals,” Myles said. “I want to try to make it to the top-10 at nationals.”
Myles attributes his success to the dedication he’s given to the sport since he first got on a horse.
His brother, Waylon, agrees Myles’ work ethic has put him in the position to be one of the top riders in the state.
“He’s worked his way up and has gotten better,” Waylon said. “He picked it up really quick.”
Myles said he is still working on becoming an expert at the sport. He lifts weights every night and rides the bucking machine twice a week.
“You have to be in such good shape to do that sport,” he said. “It takes time to get the hang of it. You have to practice every single day if you want to be good.”