Camel grazing season in the offing

SALALAH: Villagers in the suburbs of the Governorate of Dhofar are waiting for the spring season (known as Al Sirb in local parlance) when the pastures would be full of trees and grass that grow after the rainy khareef season. Dhofar Governorate has mountain chains that are unique in terrain, hit by monsoon winds, drizzle and fog. The slopes, plains and valleys become green gardens, presenting a panoramic view. When the spring sun shines, the trees and grass acquire a shimmering golden colour, heralding the start of the camel grazing season (locally called Khateel al Ebil). This is the time when camel owners in the Dhofar mountains prepare for various rituals of the season, taking their herds to the grazing areas that had been closed at the beginning of khareef.
They are joined by other enthusiasts of these rituals from different areas of the governorate. Chanting some Dhofari folk songs, such as ‘Habbout’, and enacting other traditional arts, they accompany the camels when they arrive in their pastures for grazing. Like other wilayats of Dhofar, Rakhyout too celebrate this season, when camels are let loose for grazing on these green plains. Rakhyout has the highest number of spring grazing sites in the Governorate of Dhofar.  ‘Hijailan’ is one of the major grazing sites noted for traditional rituals and large visitor turnout. To enjoy this wonderful occasion, fireplaces are lit at night and sweet melodies of Omani tradition are sung.
Camel milk is served cold to the guests, as most of them prefer this. The grazing period at Hijailan lasts for about a month until all the grass and trees get dry. Then it becomes difficult for the camels to climb to the grazing areas, leaving the place for the cows to graze on all winter. The spring grazing season is an occasion for recreation and rejuvenation, when some employees take holiday to enjoy the beautiful moments with nature. — ONA