Country Roads &… Sled Dogs?

On a country road in South Central Minnesota, one might think to see horses trot by… but sled dogs? Not so much! We decided to take the dogs out on a stretch of dirt road to hopefully work off some extra chub from the long wet spring. After we selected a route to run them on, we hooked up a team of four to the ATV and a team of three up to the dry-land training cart. Again, the girls naturally harnessed the team and secured the lines – like they’ve been doing it for a lifetime. For the first mile, the ATV was in neutral and we FLEW – literally stopping local traffic as onlookers waved while we blazed a trail of dust. The second mile however; not so impressive. It was only 67 degrees out but some of the team started overheating fast. The ATV had to be put in gear to help out the fat frothy-mouthed dogs. When we got back to the kennel, we never had such an easy time putting the dogs back – they were totally spent! With some serious water-lapping, they all recovered quickly except for our two darkest dogs – they took a bit longer which worried us at first but they too, bounced back fine. [insert reminder that we are still rookies.] And so…another mushing lesson learned; even two-mile runs in the summer (particularly for sleddogs who’ve been given treats all spring) need to happen in the very coolest part of the day! Next adventure: midnight training 😉

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Bitten by the dogsled racing bug!

We went up north to watch the John Beargrease dogsled race. The 400+ race begins in Duluth, travels up the Gunflint Trail and ends back in Duluth. Mushers must sleep outside during part of the race because it is an Ididerod qualifier. It was so much fun to see the excitement of the dogs in their element – and to see so many female mushers! A sport that my husband, myself and my daughters could do together! Hmm… “We can do this!” Well, if we had training… and a team of dogs, and sleds and a kennel and a trailer…Hmm. Wheels start turning…
*Stay tuned for more.

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