Ride the High Country

Ride the High Country (released internationally as Guns in the Afternoon) is a 1962 American CinemaScope Western film directed by Sam Peckinpah and starring Randolph Scott, Joel McCrea, and Mariette Hartley. The supporting cast includes Edgar Buchanan, James Drury, Warren Oates, and Ron Starr. The film's script, though credited solely to veteran TV screenwriter N. B. Stone Jr., was – according to producer Richard E. Lyons – almost entirely the work of Stone's friend and colleague, William S. Roberts, and Peckinpah himself.


In the early years of the 20th century, an aging ex-lawman, Steve Judd, is hired by a bank to transport gold from a high country mining camp to the town of Hornitos, California. Six miners were recently murdered trying to transport their gold on the one trail leading down from the crest of the Sierra Nevada. In his prime, Judd was a tough and respected lawman, but now his threadbare clothes and spectacles serve as reminders that he is long past his prime. Judd enlists the help of his old friend and partner Gil Westrum to guard the gold transfer. Gil, who had been making his living passing himself off as a legendary sharpshooter named The Oregon Kid, enlists the help of his young sidekick, Heck Longtree.