Winter Adventures at Home – Dog Mushing Season in the Far North


Freezing temperatures, driving winds and yapping dogs, all the makings of a true adventure. Right now, there’s just a few hours or no sunlight at all in many places in Alaska, but in a few months, the sun will begin to return and temperatures will warm just a bit, creating the ideal conditions for dogsled racing, just in time for the Iditarod, Yukon Quest and many others.

There’s a number of ways to have a mushing adventure. The more conventional way is to visit one of the many kennels and mushers that offer rides to the public.  PlettnerKennels is a good place to start, among many others.

On the other end of the spectrum, you could go full out, and jump in one of the races at Iditarod.com  or Yukonquest.org.

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But since most of us wouldn’t know driving a dogsled from flying a 757, there’s plenty of other ways to trying living life on the dogsled trail without the burden of lugging along two dozen dogs (or are they lugging you along?) In the past, it’s been a bit of a slow-moving carnival on the trail with all kinds of extreme sports caravans making their way to Nome.

If you’re a bit more of a motorhead, there’s always the option of hitting the trail on a snowmobile, keeping pace with the mushers, or breaking trail at your own pace (and your own risk).  And yes, there is a “motorized iditarod,” it’s called the Irondog 2000.