Goaslschnöllen - Whip cracking

During whip cracking performances it has been cracking for generations all over South Tyrol.

The “Goaslschnöllen” - whip cracking - is an ancient custom, which is performed especially on feast days and special occasions and has been kept alive for generations. Mostly the young men of the village line up to crack cheerfully with the long stockwhip (Goassl, in dialect) and show their skills. The whip is swung with two hands from front to back and from left to right. And this without hurting oneself, because the handling has to be learned…

This ancient tradition goes back to Bavarian-Austrian roots. It is named after the “Goassl”, a long whip consisting of a stick and a leather string. Such a “Goassl” can reach a length of several metres and was used in former times to keep the cattle under control. On festive days it was often used to welcome spring.

Today the whip cracking can be experienced in various valleys. The reason for the performance often is the ceremonial driving down of cattle from the mountain pastures back to the stables again. This day is celebrated extensively. But also the “Kirchtagskrochen” is shown again and again at the village fairs. Nowadays there are several whip cracking clubs all over South Tyrol.

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