Hej hej :) My name is Jessica and I am currently working as a volunteer on a Husky farm in Långviken, Sweden. I think this is one of the best decisions I have ever made because I love to work with dogs, be in the nature and try new things. The neighbours and the people around are super nice and open-minded, but let’s just talk about the activity, White Horizon is popular and known for: Dog Sledding.
To be honest it was never one of my biggest dream to drive a dog sled. It was something I knew and I saw before, but it never thrilled me that much until the day I tried it myself. After the first tour I realised that I will never forget those last two hours. The drive was a completely new experience, I didn’t imagine it to be like that.
Even the beginning with all of the preparation was really exiting. At first everything seemed to be a big mess: a lot of dogs were barking and jumping around, lines were tangled and I was just overwhelmed. Later the chaos revealed as a planned procedure because every dog knew his place to be, and they were just jumping and barking because they were in a big tizzy.
I started my drive without falling off the sled. This is something I was pretty proud of. The most important thing is to always keep your hands on the sled and to break almost the whole time. It’s necessary that you control the tempo and you are able to slow down and speed up the sled. After my successful start there was nothing but joy in my mind. I had to grin all the time. My team with four amazing dogs in the front, even more dog sleds in the back and the breathtaking landscape around me. The view was amazing: white trees, a colourful sky with an incredible sunset, high mountains and an iced lake. I was almost a bit stressed of all the new impressions, but just in a good way of course!
I noticed that the dogs stopped barking. It was completely silent in the forest, I was just able to hear them breathing and to hear my sled slide on the snow.
After a certain amount of time I felt really safe. My dogs in front of the sled and I became a team that had to communicate. Whenever they looked back I noticed, that I had to do something, sometimes it was just to make sure that I am still there but when for example the trail was too steep and they looked at me I realised, I have to run with them and help to move the sled up the hill. You can’t only stand on the sled, marvel at the landscape and do nothing. It is a must that you consider yourself as a part of the team, you are a team player, not a bystander. Concentration and awareness are the key for a fabulous ride that everybody is able to enjoy.
The two hours passed by so quickly, it only felt like 45 minutes. Afterwards I was sure to try it again and indeed, I did. Meanwhile I went on a couple of dog sled tours, some with perfect weather conditions, snow storms, deep snow, stucked sleds, a lot of running, tangled dogs, falling people, cold hands, beautiful skies…
When I arrived in Långviken I would never imagine that after some tries I am totally elated about sled dog tours. I am so happy that I had the opportunity to experience this activity and it is definitely something I fully recommend to other people.
Maybe you’ll experience as well! :)