Visit Iceland during “fall party”
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Rettir or “fall party” in Iceland is for everyone

Visit Iceland during “fall party”

The center of the rett is the hub of sheep sorting and social activity. Every last sheep must be delivered to its owners pen before the next round of sheep in brought in. This corral design dates back to over 300 years ago.

 (Ross Weinberg / Ross Weinberg)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

A herd of sheep is driven into the center of the rett. A brief ‘stampede’ ensues as the corral slowly fills to capacity. Once the sheep calm due to physical proximity, sorting begins.

 (Ross Weinberg)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

At the base of the Svartárdalur valley lies a sheep corral, or rett.

 (Ross Weinberg)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

 Father and Son, Heidar Oskarsson and Úlfar Hörður Sveinsson, demonstrate how sheep are wrangled inside the rétt.

 (Ross Weinberg)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

Sheep are allowed to roam freely over Maelifellsdalur and other glacially carved valleys across northern Iceland during the spring and summer months. In the fall, they are rounded up by their owners on horseback.

 (Ross Weinberg)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

The tag on the right ear of this sheep in Maelifellsrétt indicates which farm he belongs to. 

 (Ross Weinberg)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

After a long weekend corraling and sorting sheep, this hot spring, located on the edge of the sea in Skagafjordur, is a favorite of locals. According to legend, Grettir the Strong swam from the island of Drangey and came ashore and warmed up in this natural hot pool.

 (Ross Weinberg)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

Once the sheep are rounded up from the high country, they are packed into the center of the rétt for sorting by the farmers. Tags on the sheeps’ ear identify which farm they belong to.

 (Rebecca Stumpf)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

Mother and Son, Sara Reykdal and Úlfar Hörður Sveinsson, take inventory on the sheep that they rounded up for the winter at their farm, Starrastaðir.

 (Rebecca Stumpf)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

Sept. 1 is the official start of winter in Iceland, and the time when the Northern Lights start to appear. Here, a spectacular aurora shines over Lake Myvátn in northern Iceland.

 (Rebecca Stumpf)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

Icelandic horses are driven home after a long weekend of work rounding up sheep in the highlands. They are the backbone and emblem of many northern Icelandic communities.

 (Ross Weinberg)
Visit Iceland during “fall party”

After being sorted, sheep wait in the holding pen of the farm they belong to. At the end of the day, they will be transferred back home for the winter.

 (Ross Weinberg)
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