Thursday, November 3, 2011

Changing Seasons

   As the golden leaves of fall are slowly getting covered by a white blanket of bliss the dogs are getting antsy, they know their season is here. There is excitement in the air as the snow accumulates, we have about 3 or so inches on the ground right now and more for casted to fall through out the next few days.
Despite the lack of snow it is cold, we have been seeing temperatures of about -10F to -20F at night and about 0F during the daylight hours, perfect weather for sled dogs.

  While we do not have enough snow to run to dogs with the sleds yet we are running them about 4-5 times a week using a 4-wheeler, known to some as a quad. The 4-wheeler is not nearly as fun as a sled but it does provide some bonuses such as a longer training season, better stopping power, a speedometer and odometer to better track the speed and miles we are traveling. The 4-wheeler is more limited to where it can go compared to a sled especially with a string of dogs attached to it, so our trails are limited until we get some more snow and then they become endless.

Half way through an 11.4 mile run we stopped to take a quick break, and 
I took a walk up the team to check the dogs and give each one 
quick pat and tell them how good they are doing. They would much 
rather keep running then stop. Shortly after snapping this picture
the dogs decided it was time to go, and all ten dogs pulling
 at the same time creates a lot of power, even with the parking break on
 I had to quickly jump on the 4-wheeler to stop the team from leaving me behind.

The team travels seemingly effortlessly at about 12 mph.
The ability to smoothly cross obstacles in the trail such as
this wooden bridge is important for the safety of
the dogs. We work with all of the dogs to socialize
and expose them to new people, places, and experiences
from a young age. 
Chupa and Rapid display the fact that even at 0F it is still cold enough to have frosty faces.

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