Biterroot Scottish Irish Festival

September 01, 2016  •  3 Comments

During our camping trip we were lucky to get to go partake in the Biterroot Celtic Games and Gathering on the Daly Mansion grounds outside of Hamilton.  What a cool venue to have these games - many 100 year old trees and LOTS of shade made for a lovely place to wander and enjoy but a challenge for photos to be sure.   Still it was super fun to see all the costumes and traditional games and music and vendors.  I believe they had about 12 clans that showed up for the event as well so it was super fun to see all their colors.   

This is the women's weight throw.  The metal ball is either 14 or 28 pounds attached to a handle.  Longest throw wins.

This is the Sheaf Toss.   A bundle of straw (the sheaf) weighing 20 pounds and wrapped in a burlap bag is tossed vertically with a pitchfork over a raised bar much like that used in pole vaulting.  Of course there was the Caber Toss.  A long tapered pine pole or log is stood upright and hoisted by the competitor who balances it vertically holding the smaller end in his hands. Then the he runs forward attempting to toss it in such a way that it turns end over end with the upper (larger) end striking the ground first. The smaller end that was originally held by the athlete then hits the ground in the 12 o'clock position measured relative to the direction of the run. If successful, the athlete is said to have turned the caber. Cabers vary greatly in length, weight, taper, and balance. Competitors are judged on how closely their throws approximate the ideal 12 o'clock toss on an imaginary clock.  HOLY COW how they do that is beyond me! This guys is apparently a nationally ranked tosser and did a demo caber toss as part of the Opening Ceremonies.  Freaking incredible! There was also a herding demo - this is the border collies doing their thing. 

Some shots wandering around the grounds before the Opening Ceremonies.  Each of the clans had their booths set up and there were ongoing pipe and drum competitions/judging as well as dancing.  They also had some games for the kids to do!

Now please enjoy the photos of the Opening Ceremonies.  I did video of the pipe and drums but so far am having limited success getting it downloaded so use your imagination.

I saw this couple around the grounds numerous times and I just thought they were adorable. That little boy had the best seat in the house!  LOL   Well maybe not so much.

At the end of the Opening Ceremony they did a reading of the clansmen who had died over the past year.   I loved the reverence of the people gathered.

Wanted to end with the website address so anyone that is interested for next year can get information when it is posted!


Brian King Images(non-registered)
That would be fun to watch! Lots of skill being demonstrated. I'm pretty sure some of those women could probably toss me! LOL! (Where would a person pick up one of those good looking kilts?)
Lady Fi(non-registered)
I love the kilts! What fun shots.
Wow that was a great coverage of this event. It is great that these people keep their traditions alive. Looks like a fun day and a good photography outing.
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