Sledding with Dogs and a Horse

D6_Sweden_Cover

Visited December 2013

Day 6
Being far up in the north during winter meant that the nights were at least twice as long as the day. Our accommodation for the next two nights was at Scandic Hotel Ferrum, as we enjoyed a simple breakfast.

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It was an exciting day for me as it was the day I finally got to see some huskies for our dog sledding adventure. As we made our way to the husky farm about 30 minutes ride from our hotel, dawn was only just approaching even though it was already past 9am.

As luck would have it, the temperature for the morning was -17 degrees, and we were told to change into their jumpsuits for more warmth. While we had the chance to do a two-for-one combo drive and sit, somehow we were afraid that the task might have been too tough given our late night return last night. Thus, we opted instead to just be passengers of the dog sledding adventure.

Given my love for huskies, it was truly an enjoyable moment, and the ride was simply exhilarating! Through our guide, we also learnt that not all huskies are born to be the lead dog, and chances are higher when one of its parents used to be a lead dog. Training starts when they are young, and a dog has a potential to be a lead dog whenever his/her ears perk up when they are coming to a crossroad to listen for instructions/directions.

As it was only a half day ride, before we knew it, we have reached the end of our trip. And because we were running late, we did not have many opportunities to take photos of the dogs with the sled or with the dogs themselves, which was a great pity as huskies are my favourite.

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If I had the chance, I would definitely have learnt how to mush with my own group of huskies.

Returning to our hotel, we quickly caught up some more rest due to our late night return previously. The evening session for the day was more aurora hunting, but this time, in a horse drawn sleigh.

Sitting in the sleigh covered with reindeer hides, we were brought around the villages of Poikkijärvi in search of aurora lights. Given that the day today was much colder, we were hoping for some lights, as the Boy believed that the colder it is, hopefully the higher the chance we will get to see something. The group however did not see any lights, but instead came across a moose (which we did not see). So after a disappointing 45 minute ride, we retreated to the warmth of the stables for some lingonberry juice and snacks, as well as the opportunity to groom and pat our ride for the night.

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I guess we were just unlucky, for our guides shared that on a -40 degree night, out of the blue, geomagnetic waves started storming, and the group had one of the best views of the season. For now, we can only pray extremely hard for better luck on our last day in Lapland.

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