Winter Nomads

Hiver nomade

  • Manuel von Stürler
  • Switzerland
  • 2012
  • 90 min
  • Best of Fests
Over the course of several months, shepherds Carole (28) and Pascal (54) trek through the wintry border region of Switzerland and France with three donkeys, four dogs and around 800 sheep, in search of nourishing grasslands. Their journey of 600 kilometers brings them through inhospitable areas, snowstorms and along the fringes of urbanity. This remarkable road movie reveals how rural areas are getting snapped up by the modern world and the consequences of this. Each year, the transhumance becomes more and more complicated because the grasslands get engulfed by housing developments and highways. While Carole is new at herding, Pascal is an experienced traveler. This strong personality is at one with his animals, but at first he's a bit rough on Carole, until he gradually learns to trust her. Manuel von Stürler follows the duo for four months, without any interviews or interference. Slowly but surely, we get to know all the facets of shepherding, one of the world's oldest occupations and one that requires a surprising amount of improvisation and attention. Between snow and hailstorms and the occasional dinner in some people's home, the courageous shepherds find time for introspection and conversations about the world around them. A special, melancholic journey back to our roots, replete with captivating cinematography of a diminishing landscape.


  • 90 min
  • color
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: French
  • Subtitles in: English
Manuel von Stürler
Heinz Dill for Louise Productions
Executive producer
Elisabeth Garbar for Louise Productions
Camille Cottagnoud
Karine Sudan

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