Monday, March 25, 2013

Dog Sledding in the Canadian Rockies

Dog-sledding is all about the dogs. I thought the quiet, snowy scenery would be the star of the show but those huskies steal the spotlight. They LOVE what they do. Before the tour begins and they're getting hitched up, their excitement builds until the barking is deafening.

Our tour had a total of five sleds, with two people per sled. Greg and I climbed in and were wrapped up in something like a sleeping bag. Then a canvas covering topped it off. We were told beforehand to dress as if we were going skiing, so despite the fact that it was 17 degrees F, we were snuggly warm.

The dogs were jumping, barking and straining to take off until our guide released the brake and told our team to go!

The sled bumped along the trail at first, kind of like a boat hitting waves. But soon the path smoothed out and we were able to relax and take it all in.

We stopped eventually so our guide could take a few pictures of us. The dogs wanted him to hurry up!

"Let's go!"

 And go we did!

We went under the arch which divides Alberta from British Columbia, turned around and stopped.

The dogs got a well-deserved break while we got out to stretch our legs. To show my appreciation, I scratched each good boy behind the ears and told him he was doing a good job. One of them jumped up and planted his paws on my chest because after all, we were buddies now.

Happy guys:

On the way back, Greg got to "drive" the sled. (All he did in reality was hold on. The dogs know what they're doing.)

We veered off the wide path and rode through the middle of the woods on a narrow trail.

That was my favorite part. We slid along back there in the deep snow, no other teams in sight. The snow was completely untouched save for the dog sled trail and these tracks that we stopped to look at:

Lynx tracks!! Everyone in the Lake Louise area has been buzzing about a female lynx and her cub spotted a few times near the highway. I wish I could get a photo of them, but the chances of that happening are very slim. This photo of her tracks will have to do.

So back we sped, the dogs occasionally looking at our guide for confirmation that they should just keep going.

Back at base camp, we were given the opportunity to toss each dog a treat of frozen meat. They snapped it up, rolled around in the snow and were completely satisfied.

But I wasn't. Greg said I couldn't take any of the dogs home. hmpf!


Anonymous said...

booo to Greg for not letting take a dog home :(
The photos looks so awesome and you too guys, the scenery it is beautiful, looks like you had a fantastic time out there :)

Margaret said...

What a fun experience!! Really cool pictures. (I could only get a few of them to enlarge.)

Susan said...

What a great experience!! So glad you were able to get that crossed off your bucket list for Canada!!

Anonymous said...

That looks like a blast! I would want to pat every doggy also. Is it really fast?


caryl said...

No, we didn't go very fast. I wanted to, though.

Anonymous said...

Fantastic - what a unique experience! You are absolutely making the most of your time in Canada - hooray for you both!
Love, Mom

Anonymous said...

That looks like so much fun. Glad you got to go. We saw dog sledding in Alaska and the dogs really love it and get so excited. The barking before they take off is sooooo loud!! Cathy

Anonymous said...

Looks like Fun Fun Fun!! Glad you got to go.