Here's what the Iverson Movie Ranch obsession is all about ...

For an introduction to this blog and to the obsession a growing number of vintage film and TV fans have with the Iverson Movie Ranch — the most widely filmed outdoor location in movie and TV history — please read the site's introductory post, found here.
• Your feedback is appreciated — please leave comments on any of the posts.
• To find specific rock features or look up movie titles, TV shows, actors and production people, see the "LABELS" section — the long alphabetical listing on the right side of the page, below.
• To join the MAILING LIST, send me an email at and let me know you'd like to sign up.
• I've also begun a YouTube channel for Iverson Movie Ranch clips and other movie location videos, which you can get to by clicking here.
• Here's a link to Garden of the Gods, the best-known section of the Iverson Movie Ranch (featured in the movie "Stagecoach," the "Lone Ranger" TV show and hundreds of other productions).
• To go right to the great Iverson cinematographers, click here.
• Readers can email the webmaster at

Sunday, March 16, 2014

I believe you've met the Angry Cardinal's stiff upper lip ...

"Khyber Patrol" (1954)

A few posts back I introduced a rock formation I call the Angry Cardinal, which was located on the Iverson Movie Ranch and appeared in countless old movies and TV shows. I left out a few details from that post because I needed to bring readers up to speed on some of the Cardinal's neighboring rocks in Iverson's Upper Gorge — especially Hobbit House.

Hobbit House, as it appears today (mostly buried underground)

Hobbit House and Angry Cardinal were close neighbors in the filming era, and in fact Hobbit House was incorporated into the image of the Angry Cardinal. For some background, you can read my original Angry Cardinal post here, and you can click here to get the basics on Hobbit House.

Hobbit House as it stood tall in its movie days, seen here in "Stagecoach Express" in 1942

You may have already put this together, but one big connection between Hobbit House and Angry Cardinal is that the mushroom-shaped top of Hobbit House — its distinguishing characteristic — formed the top beak of the Angry Cardinal.

Hobbit House in context in the Iverson Gorge, as seen in "Khyber Patrol."

The Cardinal's "angry beak" — Hobbit House — could be seen from all the way across the Iverson Gorge, as in the shot, again, from "Khyber Patrol." Hobbit House gave the Angry Cardinal its "stiff upper lip" — its snarling top beak, a focal point of the rock character's "anger." (Another one being the "angry eyebrow" above the beak, which you may be able to spot in the next photo.)

"The Trusted Outlaw" (1937)

The above shot from the Republic B-Western "The Trusted Outlaw" — one of the best productions for spotting cool Iverson stuff — shows a couple of the key components of the Angry Cardinal: the beak, or "stiff upper lip," provided by Hobbit House, and the angry eyebrow — essentially, the Angry Cardinal's head — at top center.

That same shot, with the key players identified.

"The Lone Gun" (1954)

Like the Cardinal's beak, the angry eyebrow could be seen from across the Gorge, as in the above shot from the George Montgomery Western "The Lone Gun."

Components of Iverson's "Angry Cardinal"

Here's that shot again from "The Lone Gun," highlighting some of the features that make up the Angry Cardinal. The bad news about Angry Cardinal is that most of the rock formation appears to have been destroyed. While the "lips," or beak, remain alive in the form of Hobbit House, other features such as the distinctive "angry eyebrow" no longer survive. In their place is a condo unit.

The view today from the same Overlook Point is far less striking.

Here's the same shot with a couple of labels detailing what happened to Angry Cardinal. I've also spotlighted Lone Ranger Rock here, as it's Iverson's most famous rock and serves as a reference point for many film location fans.

My previous post about the Angry Cardinal can be found by clicking here.

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