Réttir: The annual sheep round-ups begin

One of Iceland's oldest cultural traditions is the annual sheep round up in September, an event called Réttir

Icelandic sheep are left to graze freely in mountains and valleys during the summer and farmers venture off on horseback to find them and bring them back home, an effort that can take a few days.  Once the sheep are back home, they're herded up in outdoor sheep pens where farmers invite family, friends and basically anyone interested in helping to sort the sheep. 

During the gathering, a sip of Brennivín and coffee is generally offered and some traditional singing. In some parts there's a Réttaball, an organised dance to celebrate the sheep rounds. 

The following photographs were taken at sheep round-ups last weekend in Fljótsdalur, South Iceland by Morgunblaðið photographer, Árni Sæberg. 

Here is a comprehensive list and map of all the round-ups in Iceland. It's in Icelandic but the dates and place names are easy to figure out!  




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