On the last Saturday in May, it gets crowded in the Merfelder Bruch near Dülmen. The spectators in the sold-out arena wait in suspense for the arrival of the wild horses. Once a year, the young stallions are separated from the herd and auctioned off. The yearlings are caught by hand by young men from the surrounding area. At the end of the day, the herd is let back into the Merfelder Bruch to great cheers from the visitors. The wild horse catch has been carried out since 1907. Without the separation of the young stallions, dangerous rank fights would break out in the herd over the mares. An increasing number of horses would also overtax the food supply and space of the Merfelder Bruch.
The Wild Horse Catch could unfortunately not take place in 2020 and 2021 due to the Corona pandemic . The tickets already purchased from these years remain valid and entitle the holder to attend the event on 28 May 2022. However, this means that the annual advance sale for the Wild Horse Catch for the event in 2022 is cancelled, as no more tickets are available due to the "Corona-related" cancellations of the last two years. Anyone who no longer wants their ticket can have the purchase price refunded via the service provider from whom the ticket was purchased.
But even if you don't have grandstand tickets, a trip to the wild horse track is worthwhile. On the day of the event itself, you have the opportunity to obtain admission tickets for the Wild Horse Track from 8.30 a.m. onwards. This way you can also experience the event outside the grandstand and marvel at the impressive herding-in of the wild horses at 15:00.
08:30 a.m.: Opening of the wild horse arena
approx. 12:30 p.m.: Opening of the grandstand ramps
approx. 1:45 p.m.: Show programme
approx. 3:00 p.m.: Entry of the wild horses
afterwards: catch of the yearling stallions
during the catch: raffle of yearling stallions, hints and conditions
afterwards: yearling stallions are offered for sale by auction
approx. 6:30 p.m.: end of the event