The Caber Toss is one of the most iconic and visually spectacular events in traditional Highland Games, showcasing both strength and skill. Rooted in Scottish tradition, this competition involves athletes tossing a large wooden pole, known as a caber, with the goal of flipping it end over end to achieve accuracy and distance.
The caber typically ranges in height from 16 to 20 feet (4.9 to 6.1 meters) and can weigh between 100 and 150 pounds (45 to 68 kg). At Saltire estate we use 3.87m, 29kg (female) and 5.55m, 59kg (male).
The unique challenge of the Caber Toss lies not in how far the caber is thrown, but in the precision of the toss. Competitors aim to flip the caber so that it lands in line with the direction of the throw, with the small end hitting the ground and the larger end ideally flipping over to point away from the athlete.
Successfully executing a Caber Toss requires a combination of raw strength, balance, and technique. Athletes often use a lifting technique to hoist the caber upright before running with it and using a controlled motion to flip it. The judge determines the score based on how closely the caber aligns with the ideal 12 o'clock position upon landing.