Extraordinary ceremony

People all over the world will hold various rituals. These habits, customs and ceremonies guide people in their lives.

In this ever-changing world, the new generation is constantly transforming and innovating rituals. Regardless of ancient or modern times, rituals have marked the most important moments in our lives: birth, death, marriage… rituals have the power to change us and open a door to a new realm for us.

And explore how to love, how to let go, how to find belonging… The answer may lie in extraordinary rituals.

In the sparsely populated western Mongolian border Bayan-Ulgai Province, Kazakhs live a traditional nomadic life of half herding and half hunting. For thousands of years, they have continued the ancient hunter tradition in these mountains and ridges-by training golden eagles to obtain the food and fur needed for life.

At the beginning of October, when autumn is still strong, the mighty Kazakh hunters, dressed in traditional costumes sewed by jackal wolves, rode on Mongolian pony horses, picked up well-trained golden eagles, and gathered together in the Altai Mountains. For the foothills of Hunter Ridge, the annual Golden Eagle Festival is held.

The Golden Eagle Festival competition is divided into two games, the first and the second, each contesting different falcon skills. The first game tested the tacit understanding between the golden eagle and people. In the morning, the person in charge will release the golden eagles one by one on the Hunter Ridge, and the hunters will swing their whips down the mountain and shout loudly to attract the attention of their own golden eagles, attracting the golden eagles to quickly identify its owner and land on him. On his arms. The second game tested the speed, accuracy and agility of the golden eagle. This time, every galloping horse the hunter rode was tied to a hare or red fox that had just been hanged, dragged it behind the horse‚Äôs tail and splashed dust; the golden eagle cruising high in the sky was aroused to hunt. With his instinct, he went down to the sky like lightning to catch the prey…The whole process did not exceed 5 seconds. During the competition, the golden eagle soars and hunts in the lofty mountains, while the hunter rides a horse to chase. The hunter and the golden eagle communicate through shouts in order to catch the prey as quickly as possible and win the game. The golden eagle competition is an excellent way to show the long-term trust relationship between the hunter and the eagle.

In addition to watching golden eagles hunting straight into the sky at a speed of 322 km/h, people can also watch traditional performances such as horse racing and archery at the Golden Eagle Festival.

In the past, the tradition of golden eagle hunting has always been dominated by men. Now some fathers also teach this traditional cultural skill to their daughters. More and more female contestants appear at the Golden Eagle Festival.