Scotland's Highland Games

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Scotland's annual Highland Games take place from early summer to early fall and include the following events.

Caber Toss

The competitor picks up the caber -- a tree-sized wooden pole -- holds it at the bottom with both hands and leans it against their body. Next, they run forward and toss the caber in an effort to throw it up and have it turn end-over-end. A perfect toss occurs when the caber lands completely upright in the 12 o'clock position. The competitor who lands the caber closest (if not at) to this position is the winner.

Weight Over The Bar

There are 2 different weights used in this competition -- 28 -lbs. and 56 -lbs. The goal is to throw the weight completely over the bar. Each competitor is given 3 attempts at each height, which gradually increases each round. The highest throw wins.

The Hammer Throw

A round metal ball (weighing 16 -lbs. or 22 -lbs. for men and 12 -lbs. or 16 -lbs. for women) is attached to the end of a 4-foot-long wooden shaft. The competitor plants their feet firmly in position wearing unique footwear. The competitor whirls the hammer around their head and throws it over their shoulder. The hammer that's thrown the farthest is the winner.

Weight for Distance

There are 2 events in this competition utilizing weights of 56 -lbs. and 28 -lbs. for men and 14 -lbs. and 28 -lbs. for women. The weights, attached to the handle for grip, can only be thrown with one hand. Typically the competitor will spin several times to gain momentum before launching the weight. The farthest throw wins.

Stone Put

Similar to shot put, the weight of the stone -- called the "Braemar Stone" -- is 20- to -26 -lbs. for men and 13- to -18 -lbs. for women. They must throw the stone from the toe board where they line up. They are not permitted to take a running start. The Open Stone competition uses lighter weights (16- to -22 -lbs. for men and 8- to -12 -lbs. for women), and the competitor is free to use any technique as long as the stone is cradled in their neck until the moment it is thrown. The farthest throw wins.