Local Customs

August 2016

Ballater Highland Games

11.08.16
Monaltrie Park, Deeside, Scotland

Highland games were first held on the church green at Ballater in 1864. In 1889 the games were moved to Monaltrie Park, below Craigendarroch Hill, the dramatic rocky outcrop that dominates the picturesque town of Ballater.

Traditional events at the first games, still featured to this day, were tossing the caber, putting the stone and throwing the hammer - known as 'Heavy' events - as well as dancing, running, vaulting, jumping and sack and barrow races.

The famous Ballater hill race - a gruelling dash to the summit of Craig Coillach - was introduced in 1946. The current record is 16 minutes 59 seconds.

Today, you can still enjoy the spectacle of the finest athletes and strongmen competing for seven heavy events at Ballater: Light and Heavy Hammer, Light and Heavy Stone, Tossing the Caber, Weight for Distance, and Throwing the Weight over the Bar.

The beautiful setting of the Royal Deeside national park, and the colour and pageantry of the Pipe Bands and Highland dancing, makes this day a splendid spectacle.

 

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