Friday, December 31, 2010

I'm No Expert

No, I'm no expert by any means, in fact I'm downright amateurish when it comes to dog sledding and skijouring.
Amateurish in comparison of some raging lunatic musher friends that I have had since first becoming addicted to this sport about 5 years ago.

No matter though, the only way to learn is by 'doing' hands on... mistake after mistake of learning the right way of doing things.

In my 5 years of being involved I have;
  • cracked a cheek bone leaning over an overly excited sled dog while hooking up
  • dislocated a thumb falling while skijouring
  • tipped many a sled on many a corner
  • lost a team after tipping a sled on a corner
  • fallen and have been dragged by a team of 6 extremely hyped up dogs
  • broken up 2 dog fights
  • lost various items off my sled
  • frozen the tips of my toes on my right foot
  • been so tired after a full day of sledding I've fallen asleep sitting up
  • I'm sure there are more 'things' to add here BUT they are hazy because......
In my 5 years of being involved I have;
  • made many, many good friends in this 'world' of dog sledding
  • experienced the unconditional love of many a dog
  • ridden many miles on a sled
  • experienced the solitude of riding for long periods of time on a sled at night (there is nothing like it... an amazing feeling)
  • Had coyotes sneak looks from a distance, then sing to us as we passed
  • witnessed a full moon play with the snow crystals making them dance as we silently swooshed past with only the sound of padding dog feet and the jingle of the harnesses
  • had icicles hang from my eye lashes (it was a cool feeling actually)
  • Learned how to hang on to a sled when it falls
  • Learned how to avoid tipping a sled on corners
  • learned not to lean over excited jumping dogs
  • learned that although I will always fall skijouring my dogs will always wait for me to get back up
I am an amature... but we all are when it comes to learning to read our dogs..... and the changing weather... and new trails......
I think that is what makes it an exciting sport... that and being allowed into the world of my dogs, catching their excitement in the hook up and their love of the run.

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