A Postcard from Lapland
Who has ever thought of Dog Sledding? A little family business in remote Lapland, called Silent Way, turned out to be the perfect combination.
Training the guests was probably their hardest job – there were some very important rules and techniques to learn. Harnessing the dogs, using your brake and anchor, keeping a tight line around corners (I broke this rule within 10m of the start, lost my sled and nearly my dogs!), and parking the sleds so the dogs didn’t get tangled. Mistakes could result in injuries
or loss of your dogs as they ran off without you! The first few hours were very nervous times….
The weather can ‘make or break’ a holiday and we were blessed with the most amazing weather for the whole tour, blue skies, sunshine and light winds every day. The time we chose for the trip was ‘the best’ of the season (not that we knew that beforehand) as daylight hours were excellent (between 7am and 7pm), the snow conditions were perfect (hard packed on track and soft powder everywhere else), and the temperatures weren’t extreme … (in Swedish terms – but for us, temps ranging from -6° max to -27° min were extreme!).
We tracked across frozen lakes, up through trees, onto the tops with vast expansive views and then down the other side – four days on the sleds at 10km/hour for 5 hours each day, with blue skies and sparkling snow, just amazing!
You probably have to like dogs (and cold weather) to do a trip like this, but they were just a pleasure to be with – soft and cuddly but so strong, hardworking, reliable and dedicated. We really enjoyed helping to look after our ‘teams’ and realised this is an integral part of the whole experience.
Descriptive words abound for the overall experience – remote and peaceful (except when the dogs howled to let everyone know they were ready to go), stunningly picturesque and both mentally relaxing and physically exhausting. A trip we will never forget, which included birthday cake (cinnamon slice) for breakfast, cooked on the wood fired stove as we slept in our first hut!