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Yak Festival

Mongolia has the second highest yak population in the world after China. Yaks are celebrated every year by way of the Mongolian Yak Festival. The yak festival is held at Bat-Ulzii Soum, in an area with the highest concentrations of yaks in the world.

yak festival mongolia

The festival starts with the yak racing. This 20 minutes yak racing is probably one of the worlds slowest mounted racing. By the time the yaks arrive at the finish line, most of them are walking or barely trotting. Many untrained yaks give up the race half way.

mongolian yak festival

The next competition is the yak lassoing. Some men on horses are scaring the yaks into running, while other men on the ground are lassoing the yaks. Once the contestant lassoes a yak, he has to fight to control the beast. Children contesting are simply dragged through the grassland.

The last yak-centered event of the day is the yak polo. It's great fun to watch the untrained and untamed beast running an undisciplined way around the field as the riders attempt to hit a ball with their hammer.


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