One thing we used to do alot of during the winter was go skijoring.  Skijoring is an awesome winter activity where you hook up to a dog, or dogs, and travel behind them on skis. 

<%image(20070223-sueskijosm.jpg|150|198|Skijoring on the Gunflint Trail)%>

     We used to have two dogs, Ambri and Jasper, they were half Husky and half Samoyed and weighed in around 100 pounds each.  They absolutely loved to go skijoring because dogs like them were born to pull.  As soon as we would get the harnesses out they would jump around barking like crazy to let us know they were ready to pull.  Sometimes Mike would take one dog and I would take the other but if we went on the groomed trails then Mike would take both.

<%image(20070223-sjueskij2sm.jpg|200|150|Skijor Fun)%>

     When Mike was skijoring with Jasper and Ambri I was usually left behind in a puff of snow.  They could easily pull him through the woods, up the hills and around the corners at high speeds.  The only time I would catch up would be if there had been a mishap.  It didn’t happen too often but one time Mike got too close behind the dogs going downhill and that scared them.  Jasper moved to the left and Ambri moved to the right and then they both stopped.  Mike continued downhill but came to an abrupt stop when he got tangled in the lines stretched out across the width of the trail.  Another time Mike got the ride of his life while the two dogs were in hot pursuit of a deer.  That ride ended with Mike on the ground and a broken ski pole in his hand. 

     My friend was over the other day and brought his two Golden Retrievers, Jessica and Sandy;  I was in charge of dog sitting while he went snowmobiling.  Something made me think about skijoring and before I knew what I was doing I had the harnesses out and was hooked up behind them.  Any dog of a significant size can be trained to skijor, especially if you start out when they are young. 

     Skijoring was as fun as I remembered it to be but it made me miss my big dogs; Rugby just isn’t cut out for skijoring.  Jessica and Sandy weren’t too sure about it but I sure enjoyed showing them how it was done.  If your’e looking for a new sport to try with your dogs then give it a try; skijoring is a blast.