We travel through southern Alberta, Canada to learn more about the Blackfoot Confederacy, one of the most legendary tribes of the North American plains.
This video was made possible with the support of Travel Alberta. For more information about the region, check out their website and social media info below:
Big thanks to everyone who helped us out!
Desiree Yellowhorn at Writing on Stone Provincial Park:
– Treffrey Deerfoot and his family at Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump UNESCO World Heritage Site:
– Clayton for the lessons with the atlatl –
– Buffalo Rock Tipi Camp:
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VAGABROTHERS: We’re Marko and Alex Ayling, brothers, backpackers, and bloggers on a mission to explore the world through its people. Winners of My Destination’s global travel-video competition “The Biggest, Baddest, Bucket List” which paid us to travel the world for six months, checking off our travel bucket list and documenting the adventure on YouTube. See the full BBBTV web-series here:
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– Canon Rebel T3i DSLR Camera:
– Canon EF-S 18-200mm Zoom Lens:
– Canon Powershot S120:
– Go Pro Hero 3+:
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– Promaster CX525 Tripod:
– Promaster Superlite 3-Way Head:
– SD 32GB Memory Sticks:
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okay ready okay three two all right what's up everybody I'm Alex I'm Marco and we're the vagabrothers and this week we're exploring Blackfoot culture in Alberta Canada the Blackfoot Confederacy is one of the most legendary tribes over North America for nomadic bison countries who thousands of years followed the great curves along what is now the u.s. Canadian border today the Blackfoot reside in both Canada and the United States from Montana to British Columbia and Saskatchewan but our journey started in southern Alberta at one of the black foots most sacred places writing-on-stone Provincial Park good morning guys we've just arrived to riding on stone Provincial Park this place is considered very sacred by the Blackfoot nation this is considered to be the meeting of the spiritual and physical worlds and you can see just looking around why it's such a cool place so we're going to learn a little bit more about black culture with our guide and interpreter Desiree yellow horn guys this is so serene right now such an awesome way to start the day Desiree's gonna take us down to some more petroglyphs and pictograph the Blackfoot believe that this area is inhabited by many spirits often called grandfathers and grandmothers the air the valley here actually belongs to them it's their home this area is considered very sacred so you can equate it to such places as Jerusalem or Mecca so you said there's petroglyphs pictograph yeah he tells just how many there are in the park a rough estimate thousands of petroglyphs hundreds of pictographs writing-on-stone here was a way for them to actually communicate with the spirits so some of the rock art here is believed to be created by the spirits as messages for the people we haven't really counted them all mainly because every time we decide to go exploring we always find something new it's a way for us to teach our ways of life share around 20 or 30 years ago First Nations were depicted as the other but now we're not seen as the other were seen as all together we're all interconnected guys this is incredible all of these rocks pretty much for a couple of miles there's thousands of petroglyphs there's hundreds of pictographs each one's unique and it tells a different story it's pretty fascinating huh bro I think it would be cool I mean what inspires people to depict art really reflects the symbols and the values of culture and we're just learning a little bit about it it's our first day exploring Blackfoot culture and so far so quite enlightening it's a beautiful place to it's just amazing that it lasts for like five hundred plus years and that we're still sitting here marveling at it you know that many hundreds of years later they say that when these symbols disappear from erosion that the story is finished but for now we're here able to enjoy them and learn about their meaning and the dollars that they represent and it's not her to do so grab well that was super interesting learning about Blackfoot rock art and petroglyphs but now the Sun is high in the sky it's lunch time and Desiree has offered to cook us some traditional Blackfoot meals so I hope you're hungry brother starving okay let's go do it what are we going to make here called panic in fit Gunny it's basically well fried bread so two cups of flour at the flour k2 baking powder components on this fry bread so far yeah it's like a beat so you make Omega Psi mini pizza pie brah all right so this pemmican was used to sustain people when they're going traveling or during hunting raids it's like kinda like corned beef hash a little bit whether it's definitely some berries in there what's gnarly I think if you ate a lot of this so would probably have some trouble coming out the other end and it looks like quite the spread so we got me coming in here dry bread and then berry soup Saskatoon berry soup Dunkin Donuts got nothing on this we got a little bit of powdered sugar now you're getting creative well it's been an absolutely incredible day learning about Blackfoot culture but now we're going to take a little bit of a sunset cruise down the milk river the milk river is running all the way through the park God's name in English from Lewis and Clark the native it's milky consistency right now it just seems like the creamiest cool awesome way of us finishing this day so let's get into inner tubes and float down down right now we are about two hours south of Calgary at a unesco world heritage site called the head smashed in buffalo jump is a place where the Blackfoot have come from for 6,000 years to Stampede the Buffalo off the cliff to use their bodies to make food shelter and clothing to survive the winter so today we're going to meet some modern Blackfoot we're going to teach us more about their culture or connect Sorensen Van Akua has secured not just repeat a b.p dr. geeks six kites tepee hello my name's Trevor foot I come by way of Blackfoot speaking people I'm a ceremonies I am part of our very sacred society called the horn society and has since I'm at the highest level of our culture in terms of spirituality in essence we celebrate nature you saw us dancing here earlier and we were dancing to the heartbeat then drumming is representing the heart the heartbeat of light thing and so that's what we're celebrating in the dance ancestors has made many sacrifices and left us a very rich history which we portray to you today still alive it's a living culture this particular site is I have a head smashed in Buffalo John but there you know it's just one form of how we used to harvest the Buffalo and our survival very well existed with it with the Buffalo we were not landowners where people did care take after which we have here is an Adelaide spear throw you would have three parts would at the shaft got the handle and you have a dart that we set set in at the front part ever since I read about these in anthropology class I wanted to use one to be my dream comes true oh so the atlatl hello so here we have the ad level this was like before the arrival of Europeans with bows and arrows and guns this was the original way of long-distance growing smoother launching spear watching so Clayton here has been showing us how to do it like a master point through the animal where you're at step into it and just follow through pretty good I don't know I do have a fundamental lack of coordination that we're now going to try test it's true I'm right-handed what the hell I'm like this right you're right head you want to use your left hand you're use your left hand for right-handed you'll get business man use your left in also getting my head row right hand is it good right I have a feeling this is you either stab me in the toe or go way off but oh wow that night we camped on the river a fellow rock TB camp when we were guided through the forest and shown the blackfoots ancient wisdom finding medicinal plants foraging for berries and tracking wild animals she left back gone there actually the first time ever hug the tree I'm so much here and breathe for thousands of years the Blackfoot lived in harmony with nature taking only what they needed and using every single piece of the Bison by the 1870s white settlers had hunted the Bison to near extinction the Blackfoot were forced to settle on reservations adopt a sedentary lifestyle and assimilate into European society these days the Blackfoot don't dress like they used to they wear blue jeans and t-shirts like the rest of us but their culture lives on through their language their dances and the writing on the stones alright guys hopefully you enjoyed that video if you want more information about how you can explore Blackfoot culture check out travel Alberta's website in the info box as always if you enjoyed the video make sure you give it a thumbs up share it with your friends and subscribe to vagabrothers for new travel videos every tuesday the meantime stay curious keep exploring and we'll see you guys on the road peace ok guys hopefully you enjoyed that video make sure you check out some of our other videos from Alberta on the left you have the Calgary Stampede or mark and I dress up like Cowboys for a week and on the right you have the Badlands incredible scenery dinosaur bones and paleontology also if you haven't done it yet make sure you click that 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