The battle begins with the Stark forces deployed near a treeline, to prevent themselves from being taken unawares from behind. Across the field is the much larger Bolton army, using burning flayed corpses in an effort to demoralize the Stark troops. Ramsay himself trots out on his horse to the front of the formation, bringing along a prisoner: Rickon Stark himself. Ramsay acts at first as if he will slit Rickon's throat, but instead cuts his bonds and delightfully insists that he play a game; run to Jon whilst dodging his arrows. Rickon immediately starts running in a straight line toward Jon, while Ramsay shoots and misses with a war bow. Just when Rickon is about to reach Jon, however, Ramsay's final shot hits the young lord straight in the heart, killing him almost instantly.
Enraged and maddened with grief, Jon charges full tilt at the Bolton forces, who immediately loose their arrows on him. Alarmed, Davos orders in the Stark cavalry to charge after their commander, with the infantry closely following behind. His horse shot out from underneath him, Jon prepares for his last stand by drawing Longclaw and facing the Bolton cavalry seemingly alone. He is saved by the timely arrival of the Stark cavalry, and the battle becomes a bloody storm of swords. Men fall in battle so quickly that they begin to form small hills of the dead.
Ramsay orders his own archers to fire on both the Stark forces and their own cavalry, while Davos refrains from doing the same. The arrows kill both Stark and Bolton men, and soon the small hills become a wall of the fallen. Although Ramsay loses many of his men to friendly fire, it becomes clear that they are intentionally being sacrificed as part of a sadistic plan to prevent his enemy from retreating. Davos, along with Wun Wun and Tormund, join the fray after seeing so many men die, temporarily stemming the tide, but the three are soon surrounded by a pike phalanx led by Smalljon Umber.