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 iversonmovieranch@gmail.com 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 iversonmovieranch@gmail.com.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Donald "Red" Barry's wonder horse Banner hides in the bushes near a rock with an L-shaped crack

L-R: Wild Bill Elliott, Bob Livingston, Don Barry, Roy Rogers,
Allan "Rocky" Lane, Sunset Carson

Donald "Red" Barry may have been one of the shortest cowboy heroes of the B-Western era, but I also think he may have been the best actor in the bunch.

"Ghost Valley Raiders" (Republic, 1940): Lobby card shot at Iverson's Grove Cabin

Barry shot most of his Republic pictures on the Iverson Ranch, and they're some of the best showcases for the ranch if you can find them. I recently scanned "Ghost Valley Raiders" and it's a rocktacular — I want to thank Western movie location historian Tinsley Yarbrough for pointing me to the movie.

Donald Barry and "Banner" at the Grove Cabin on the Lower Iverson

Barry rode a cool movie horse in the 1940s — Banner. The word is that Banner, a big bay, later did movie work with John Wayne, Rocky Lane and Andy Devine. Ouch!

Donald Barry and Banner in "Ghost Valley Raiders"

Banner was presented as one of those super-smart movie horses, and in "Ghost Valley Raiders" he was given a number of "wonder horse"-type stunts to do to help Barry fight bad guys.

Banner hides in the bushes — positioned conveniently next to a distinctive rock

In one of those stunts, all Banner had to do was go hide in the bushes. As it turns out, he hid right next to a rock with a distinctive curved, or L-shaped, crack running through it.

I was able to find that same rock on a recent visit to the former movie ranch.

The rock is kind of hidden among the condos just east of Redmesa Road.

"The Roy Rogers Show" (1957): Roy and Trigger at the L-shaped crack

Banner wasn't the only famous movie horse to be filmed at the L-shaped crack. In this shot from an episode of "The Roy Rogers Show," Roy works with Trigger near the same cracked rock.

The shot comes from the episode "End of the Trail," which premiered Jan. 27, 1957, during the show's sixth and final season. The episode would have been filmed in 1956.

This Google aerial shows where the cracked rock can be found. It's in a private community, but in my experience the residents have been cool about visitors who are there for thoughtful rock gawking.

The "Hangman's Tree" on the Lower Iverson ("Ghost Valley Raiders")

The cracked rock sequence in "Ghost Valley Raiders" also features the so-called "Hangman's Tree," which was located nearby but did not survive condo development. Click here to read a detailed post about the tree.

Another view of the Hangman's Tree in "Ghost Valley Raiders"

Oddly enough, no one seems to recall an instance where the "Hangman's Tree" was used for a hanging. If you know of one, I'd like to hear about it. Please comment or send a note.

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