2012-13 Missoula Curling Club Rules Published

Note: A PDF version of the rules are available here.

House Rules For The Missoula Curling Club: 

  • Bring separate shoes for curling. Change shoes prior to entering the ice to keep ice clean. Salt and dirt will track onto ice, changing the conditions of the ice.
  • Everyone should help bring stones onto ice before games and return them to the storage locker when the session is finished.
  • Games will be six (6) ends. Ends are like innings in baseball.
  • There is a 90-minute time limit for each match. If you have less than 15 minutes left in the 90-minute game, you cannot start a new end.
  • Teams consist of 4 to 6 members, each throwing 2 stones, in the order you set. The 4 players who start the end must remain the same position throughout the end.
  • You may substitute players in between each end, if your team so chooses. Players must be rotated in the following manner: Any new player may enter the game at the start of any end but can only enter the game in the lead (first) position. Each other player can rotate up one position if they choose, but can only ascend to the Skip position by moving up and through each of the other positions.
  • Each team will designate a Skip and Vice-Skip.
  • Begin by flipping a coin, this is done by the Lead, and the opponent Lead will call it in the air. Whoever wins, decides if they want Hammer or not. (Hammer means you throw the last stone on the first end. Then the other skip picks which set of rocks to throw. (Color)
  • Whichever team scores, the Hammer moves to to the team that did not score.
  • Introduce yourselves to the other team, shake hands and say “Good Curling” to each other.
  • Non- hammer team throws the first stone. Seconds and Vice-Skip sweep for the lead. When player lets go of the stone, other team should begin setting up the stone for their turn. When the stone motion stops, sweepers move to the side and stay between the Hog lines and try to not distract other players. Skip leaves the house and stands behind the hack as other skip takes over the house.
  • Until four stones have been played (two from each side), stones in the free guard zone (the area between the hog and tee lines, excluding the house) may not be knocked out of play by an opponent’s stone. These are known as guard rocks. If the guard rocks are removed, they are replaced to where they were before the shot was thrown, and the opponent’s stone is removed from play and cannot be replayed. This rule is known as the four-rock rule or the free guard zone rule.
  •  Only Vice Skip look and decide which stones are closer and what the score is.
  • Always compliment good shots, by raising your brooms. Never comment on an errant stone.
  • If at the end of 6 ends the score is tied, the skips that skipped the last end played will each throw one stone and the winner will be determined by which stone is closer to the button. This is known as a Shootout.
  • Report scores before leaving to the league manager.



All rules stated and posted by the rink are to be followed, with special adherence to the following:


  • No Smoking under the canopy or inside the rink.
  • No glass at the rink.
  • No beer, alcohol, or sodas to be on the ice, whatsoever!





  • For newer curlers, sliders should be worn when delivering or waiting to deliver a stone.
  • Step on to the ice with your “gripper” shoe first and be careful! Never use your slider foot for your first step on the ice.
  • Sliders should be removed (or covered with a gripper for curling shoes) after a player’s turn to deliver is over or when one is leaving the ice.
  • Never stop a rock with your hand. Your fingers can be crushed, especially if the rock hits another rock while you are trying to stop it! Never use your feet to stop a rock as you can lose your balance and fall. Use a broom or brush to stop a rock.
  • Always carry a broom or brush with the broom head down, which you can use to avoid or break a fall in case you lose your balance.
  • While sweeping, if you can’t keep up with a fast shot, back off. Don’t risk a fall on the ice.
  • Before you step on the ice, take note of the ice conditions. Sometimes the ice is wet from the cleaning and will be more slippery than normal.
  • Never go on the ice when your balance is impaired from sickness, medication or alcohol.


For More Information On Curling:

  • Read a book on the basics of curling.
  • One good example: Curling for Dummies by Bob Weeks.
  • Visit an Internet site designed to teach the basics of curling.
  • One good example: CurlTech’s The Curling School at http://www.curlingschool.com/. In particular, new curlers should review the following sections: “Overview of curling”. “The Delivery by CurlTech,” “Sweeping,” and “Appendix A: Curling Terms & Lingo.”



3 thoughts on “2012-13 Missoula Curling Club Rules Published

  • March 24, 2013 at 6:24 pm

    My husband and I saw our first curling game on the olympics and enjoyed it so,so much. I read some of todays news on line and was surpirsed we have teams here in Missoula. We would love to come to your games. Could you send us a schedul of your games for this year? Thanks much

    Rick and Mary Dement

    • September 30, 2013 at 9:44 pm

      Sorry for the late response! Our Board Members are volunteers and don’t usually man the website as we should.

      Learn to curl sessions are coming up in late October and Winter league will start in November.

      You can email me at cyrmontana@gmail.com. If you like I can put you on our group email list for awhile so you can keep up to date with announcements.


      Charlene Young

    • November 16, 2013 at 8:01 pm

      Rick and Mary,

      It looks like our league games are starting on Saturday Nov 23 and will be most Saturday nights except Holiday weekends. There;s a Learn to Curl tonight Nov 16 at 9;30 pm if you’d like to try curling, Otherwise, we’d love to have you come and watch.

      If you want a quicker answer to your questions feel free to email missoulacurling@gmail,com

      MCC Board


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