Migration of the Eagle Hunter.

On the migration route of Eagle hunters, crossing mountain passes, frozen rivers and ice lakes.

STU_3422

Shohan.

Clad in sheep skins, wearing a fox fur hat sat aside his trusted horse, Shohan leads the migration. Driving a mixed herd of goat, sheep, cattle, horses and camel 150km into the Altai mountains. The journey will take Shohan, his brother Ozat and cousin Koke five days.

STU_6415

Shohan tends to a camel and its calf.

Shohan is an Eagle Hunter, a Kazakh from Western Mongolia. He and his family are nomadic, they migrate with their herd up to four times a year.

STU_1150

Dawn on day one.

STU_2357

Through valleys towards the mountains.

During this epic journey they will cross mountain passes, frozen rivers and lakes of solid ice.

STU_1863

The Black lake.

The animals are reluctant to cross the ice, Shohan covers the surface with dirt, they still resist and have to be encouraged to cross.

STU_2854

Crossing the frozen river.

STU_2832

Horses not sure of the ice.

Hunting with eagles is an ancient tradition that dates back over 4,000 years, using a Golden Eagle to hunt foxes and rabbits and sometimes wolves. The eagles are not trained, instead a bond is formed between eagle and handler. After years of hunting the eagle hunter will set the eagle free.

STU_7583

Shoran lets his eagle loose during a hunt.

Traditionally it’s the male members of the family that take up eagle hunting, but the draw of this role was too much for Damil, Shohan’s daughter.

STU_7430

Damil with an eagle.

Damil is 13 and already learning the ways of hunting with an eagle. More and more young girls are taking up the tradition keeping it alive for future generations.

STU_8054

Damil learning to hunt.

  1. Wonderful stuff mate, great photo’s, really jealous of you on that trip.

    Like

    Reply

    1. Thanks, appreciate the comments. Was amazing Lee.

      Like

      Reply

  2. Epic stuff..

    Like

    Reply

  3. Just love it, great stuff Stuart!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  4. Amazing Stu! Wow xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  5. Great piece mate. Superb photos. Trip of a lifetime?

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    1. Thank you, perhaps although I have more planned.

      Like

      Reply

  6. Wow, what a life. Thanks for sharing your priceless experience.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    1. Thank you, it was amazing to see the migration and be a part of their life for a period of time.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  7. Absolutely stunning. Really love this post.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    1. Thank you, was amazing to experience their culture and traditions.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  8. Just a beautiful piece of work Stu, quite remarkable in every respect. Many thanks for telling the story.

    Like

    Reply

  9. That’s an amazing journey! That’s the kind of trip I dream of going to because the life stories of locals are the most interesting ones to witness.

    Like

    Reply

    1. Thank you, it was truly amazing, not only the migration but experiencing the culture too.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  10. Wow, amazing photo shoots!!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    1. Thank you, it was an amazing experience.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  11. Wow! Fabulous photographs. I particularly like the one of Damil with the golden eagle. I completely agree with your mantra about exploring what’s on your doorstep as well as the wider world. I look forward to reading more of your posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    1. Thank you so much. Tamil was an inspiration, she’s only 13.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  12. Your photograph is stunning, as noted by your admiring readership above. As a horsewoman (and an oil painter who paints horses), I love the mustangs crowded into one frame. I may try to paint that scene. What a life to be able to photograph such a remote people and experience. Your writing that accompanies the photography is great! (I’m a long-time English instructor, happily retired after reading so much bad writing for 42 years.) I look forward to your posts as they present themselves. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    1. Thank you for your kind words.

      Like

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: