Trailing of the Sheep Festival

September 11, 2018

October 10, 2018 – October 14, 2018 all-day
N Main St
Ketchum, ID
Trailing of the Sheep Festival @ Ketchum | Idaho | United States


Unique Cultural Festival Celebrates 22nd Year in 2018

The resort area of Sun Valley, Idaho has long been a low-key hangout for celebrities and other high-profile visitors.  But each fall, during the second weekend of October, it is the sheep who are the real stars during the annual wild and wooly Trailing of the Sheep Festival.

Now celebrating its 22st year, October 10 – 14, the Trailing of the Sheep Festival celebrates the 150+ year tradition of moving sheep (‘trailing’) from high mountain summer pastures down through the Valley to traditional winter grazing and lambing areas in the south.  This annual migration is Idaho living history and an extended weekend long family-friendly festival that celebrates the people, arts, cultures and traditions of sheep ranching in Idaho and the West.  The event’s authenticity has proven its national and international appeal, drawing thousands each autumn to the charming mountain communities of Hailey, Ketchum and Sun Valley in central Idaho.

The sheep and Trailing of the Sheep Festival have also gained some well-deserved fame, including being recognized as one of the Top Ten Fall Festivals in the World by travelTop Ten US Fall Festivals by smartertravel.comTop Animal Festivals in the World and Top Ten Fall Festivals by USA Today, America’s Wackiest Fall Festivals by Huffington Post, One of the Greatest Cultural Events in the West by Northwest Travel, recipient of the Society of American Travel Writer’s Phoenix Award for best in cultural tourism, and the  Idaho Governor’s Award for Cultural Heritage.

The five-day Festival includes nonstop activities in multiple venues – history, folk and traditional arts, a Sheep Folklife Fair, a Wool Festival with classes and workshops, music, dance, storytelling, Championship Sheepdog Trials and, the always entertaining, Big Sheep Parade with 1,500 sheep hoofing it down Main Street in Ketchum.  This Festival authentically celebrates the history, heritage and cultures of Idaho and the West.

2018 Festival Highlights Include:

  • Culinary Events with Lamb Tastings, Lamb Fest at the Folklife Fair, Cooking with Lamb classes, Farm to Table Lamb Dinners and more. NEW in 2018:Taste & Craft, a local and regional tasting experience, with the Trailing of the Sheep Festival as beneficiary. 
  • Wool Fest with classes and workshops
  • Sheep Tales Gathering, Hikes and Histories featuring Idaho’s sheep ranchers and renowned storytellers
  • Sheep Folklife Fair featuring the Basque, Scottish, Polish & Peruvian dancers and musicians, sheep shearing, folk, fiber and traditional artists, children’s activities and more
  • Sheep Jam party with food and live music by The Dusty 45s
  • Two-and-a-half days of Championship Sheepdog Trials with 70 of the county’s most talented border collies
  • Trailing of the Sheep Parade with 1,500 sheep trailing down Main Street in Ketchum


For information and a detailed schedule of events, visit