Dog Sledding with Winterdance

Haliburton Travel Blog

 › entry 2 of 2 › view all entries
Me, Colleen and our team driving along on the lake.
We were supposed to get to the tour site by 9am--we got there at 9:37. The people at Winterdance were really cool about it though and said we could still join the training session since it was just getting underway, but we decided to wait another 30 minutes for the 10am run. This worked to our advantage because we got the coolest instructor, Fraser--very knowledgeable and funny--and had him all to ourselfs for our small group of four.

Fraser went through quick lesson with the entire group (there were about 12 all together) of us on what to expect from the dogs, the different parts of the sled, the harness, the brakes and most importantly the correct calls: "Hike" is to go, not "mush" as some of you might think, "woah" means to stop or slow down and we had to call "on by" if the dog was distracted by the side of the trail (e.
Belle's cool eyes.
g. by a squirrel or something) while it was running. The brake took a bit of getting used to... it was a parallel bar with spikes on either end that dug into the snow to slow down the sled, between the thin ski bars that the driver had to balance on with his or her feet.

The dogs were very eager to get running. You should've heard the noises and excitement that was in the air when they were getting harnessed in. There were 6 dogs to each sled, one driver and one rider sitting in the sled. I didn't want to take the chance and drive for the first time, so I let Colleen have the honours. We switched about 1 hour in (after getting some yummy hot chocolate), then other three times to give each of us a break. The feeling of the wind hitting your face as you have these wonderful creatures race down the snowy trials and frozen lakes was incredible.
I think he found a chipmunk hibernating.


The dogs were so cute, even though it was a tad shocking to see them do #1 and #2 mid-stride (Fraser had nicknamed part of the trail Poo Valley because of incidents like that... lol). Our team consisted of twins Candy and Pumpkin, Ebony (who we had to switch for Badit 1 hour in since he was having a dispute with one of the dogs on Colleen's dad's sled) and Red, and Belle and Joker.

After a couple hours we settled down in a section of the woods for some lunch. Fraser started a campfire and boiled some garden vegetable soup and BBQed some hamburgers (always tastes better over an open fire)! He also gave our teams some much deserved and highly anticipated treats (I never seen a dog jump so high or bark so loudly in anticipation. Our bellies full, we settled in for the afternoon portion of our run.
Fraser making us lunch.

Our team was so eager to go... I had a hard time trying to get Candy and Pumpkin (the lead dogs on our team) to slow down to allow enough gap between our sled and Fraser's sled!

Racing over the frozen lake was probably the most beautiful part of the trip. The air is so still and quiet. It was such a beautiful day and the trees and cliff sides were amazing to see. We got back to the starting point around 5pm, got off our sleds and gave our team some much needed water and more treats, helped pack up and thanked all the instructors for a wonderful day.

This was such a great experience. Whether you're a dog person, love the outdoors, or just want to try something new, dog sledding is a great adventure to try!
rotorhead85 says:
Awesome experience, blog, and pics! Unless you're the lead dog, the view never changes!
Posted on: Mar 28, 2008
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Me, Colleen and our team driving a…
Me, Colleen and our team driving …
Belles cool eyes.
Belle's cool eyes.
I think he found a chipmunk hibern…
I think he found a chipmunk hiber…
Fraser making us lunch.
Fraser making us lunch.
Joker and Belle
Joker and Belle
A cool-looking tree.
A cool-looking tree.
Rear view of the ride.
Rear view of the ride.
Sleepy time!
Sleepy time!
Bandit
Bandit
Candy and Pumpkin
Candy and Pumpkin
Red and Ebony
Red and Ebony
Hot chocolate break.
Hot chocolate break.
Our full team.
Our full team.
The outhouse.  Yes, I had to use i…
The outhouse. Yes, I had to use …
Me, Colleen and our team driving a…
Me, Colleen and our team driving …
Fraser and his team on the trail.
Fraser and his team on the trail.
Sponsored Links
Haliburton
photo by: portia