Horseman likes 'big spaces'


Sterling Miller drives his white pickup from town to his 40-acre property just north of the Craig city limits on Colorado Highway 13 each day to feed his family's horses.

He loads the bed with bales of hay and drives into an open pasture. He leaves the truck in drive, hops out and trails the hay out across the field.

"These are the kids' horses," he said. "I just do all the work."

His children, Mike, 11, and Jerika, 16, attend school in Craig and save time to ride their horses, which Miller said were given to them by Wilford Brimley, spokesman for Quaker Oats and Liberty Mutual diabetic testing supplies.

Brimley and Miller have been friends for many years, and Miller has Brimley's phone number saved in his cell phone. The Miller family started out with two horses, and now has nine, or "too many" as Miller says, because Brimley breeds their mares at his ranch in Springer, N.M.

Miller drives dump trucks in Steamboat Springs and has lived in Craig all his life. He's traveled but returned to Craig because his wife, Jo, who works at City Market, likes it here.

A small cabin sits at the front of the couple's property. A creek runs through it, providing a home for a beaver, one of Miller's favorite animals. The family also has a bloodhound named Chance and many cats.

"I like big spaces," he said. "You can get out of town. But I'm getting to like (Craig) less and less. It's changed a lot, for the worse."

Miller said he has considered leaving, but wants to go to the right place.

"I'm still looking, somewhere like this used to be," he said. "A small ranching community, everybody minding their own business."

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