I know it’s been well over a month since the Casterton Kelpie Muster weekend but wow! What a weekend!
The two days of pure heaven, surrounded by kelpies of many shapes and sizes was great.
The atmosphere of excitement, dogs barking, wagging tails, people chatting away to complete strangers with smiles on their faces knowing they all had one thing in common, the love of the kelpie.
Being an introvert, I’m generally not one to put my self in situations where there are lots of people in one place. Nor do I usually put my self in situations where I might have to talk to complete strangers.
But when it comes to things that I love like Kelpies, then I am willing to put myself through a little discomfort.
And it was totally worth it!
What also helps is having two dogs that can be uncomfortable in these kinds of situations so I’m often busy worrying about the dog’s feelings rather than my own.
The week before the big weekend
With the ute packed the girls and I headed for Hamilton on the Tuesday before the weekend, staying with good friends of the family.
Hamilton proved to be cold but great for early morning photographs while taking the dogs for a walk.
The plan was to enter Noisy into the Kelpie Triathalon which consists of the Kelpie dash (a 50m sprint, fastest dog wins), the Kelpie high jump and the Kelpie hill climb (fastest dog to get to the top of the hill wins).
We spent a couple of days leading up to the weekend practising the hill climb on someone’s property nearby. Noisy picked up the gist of it pretty quick, get to me at the top of the hill as quick as possible.
Saturday was an early start for us. Hamilton is approximately a 50-minute drive to Casterton, and we needed to be there between 8-8:30am to sign up for the Triathalon.
I didn’t realise until half an hour before we left that I had left my camera on all night and the battery was almost flat.
Lessons learnt, one: always make sure you turn your camera off and two: invest in a spare battery. So with the camera battery being so low I only managed to get a few photos for the day.
Because Noisy had been knocked back a few years ago for being too fluffy therefore not looking like a pure kelpie, I didn’t sign her up sooner in case she was knocked back again because of a terrible haircut.
Which meant that when I went to sign her up on Saturday morning, I was too late. They were already full. So instead we only signed up for the high jump.
The weekend is always started off with a street parade consisting of old cars, the local kids in different chariots, all of the kelpies competing in the triathlon and more!
The brand new information centre in town featuring a section dedicated to the Kelpie was fantastic to take a look at.
For a reactive dog, Noisy handled it all so well. She had random kids coming up giving her pats (and usually kids terrify her), she had other reactive dogs in her face, and there was just so much going on.
But Noisy took it all in her stride with not a growl, snarl or bark to be heard.
They hold a few different novelty events (which the dogs don’t have to be kelpies to compete in) such as the Kelpie Idol which Noisy won for the second time (shake hands, roll over and spinning round in circles can really win the crowds).
Her high jump performance wasn’t her best though, she was knocked out at just 2.1 meters where she would usually get to at least 2.6 meters.
But she still managed to be one of the most popular dogs there with plenty of people cheering her on and coming up to us afterwards asking me questions and congratulating us on our efforts.
By the time Noisy was knocked out of the high jump, it was getting cold with the sun going behind the hills.
The Sunday is the day of the Working dog Auction, and I remembered to charge my camera battery.
Before the auction, the dogs and pups that are available for sale are put on sheep to show their prospective buyers how they work.
This is my favourite part of the weekend.
Watching these dogs work is amazing. And it certainly helped me refocus my passions and dreams.
It made me realise that someday I want to sell my own dogs at this auction.
It was incredibly exhilarating watching the dogs be auctioned off, especially when it got to the highest priced dog which went for $22,000.
The whole weekend is well worth the trip even as a spectator.
For more updates on what myself, Pepsi and Noisy are up to, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Also, to make sure that you don’t miss out on a new blog you can now get email notifications! Simply click on the follow button on the right, and you will receive an email each time I post a blog.