A major celebration marked the end of the pasture period in Breil/ Brigels on the 12th of September 2015. The Alpabzug - The descent from the mountain pasture - is an important day for the local farmers. This has evolved over the years into a well-known event.
The villagers are preparing to greet the cows in the village, the women have already prepared the flower decorations on the day before. At 9 clock the 700 cows from 5 pastures (Alp Tschégn-dadens, Alp Nova, Alp Rubi, Alp Quader, Alp Tschégn-dado) begin their descent from the Alps.
The descent is very, very fast and sometimes dangerous because the cows feel that they are coming home, so they are very excited and are running fast. Once they arrive in the lowlands, they stop at the edge of the village, where they get ready for the parade. The same women who made the floral decorations the day before now bind them on the cows' heads and around their bellies. The cow that has given the most milk during the summer - Miseriera - and the cow which became the matriarch over the summer - la Pugnera - lead the Alpabzug on, accompanied by the cowherd.
They also get the most beautiful flower decorations.The beautifully decorated animals, led by their cowherds, walk in front of the many spectators to the sound of their neck bells and Alphorn traditional music. They arrive in a fixed order at the meadow Plaun Rueun. There the party is in full swing: people enjoy the local home-made specialities and grilled sausages, children entertain themselves in the straw castle and in the petting zoo.
The hard work of humans and animals in the Alps is celebrated by inviting the cowherds of the 5 pastures onto the stage and congratulating them.Those who love authentic customs and traditions should visit Alpabzug Brigels - Scargada Breil.Brigels is a place that impressed me from the first moment. Farmers work from dawn to dusk, preserve traditions, are cheerful, hospitable and never complain about anything.
They are very proud that their community is so united when it comes to the organization of such events. They are very proud that the farmers can cooperate with each other to put on such a spectacular event.
I am honoured and grateful to habe been part of the event.