Dog Sleds Winter Fun Snow Activities

No trip to Anchorage Alaska is complete until you don a parka and goggles and climb aboard a dog powered sled. No matter what time of year you visit the 49th state, you can have the rare opportunity to experience travel by dog sled.

Dog sledding was once the main mode of transportation for the native Indians of Alaska. Today it has evolved into a major sport in Alaska. Originally sleds were built from bone, sinew or wood. Today more modern materials are generally used in sled construction. Over the years sinew and wood were replaced by materials plastic and aluminum. Today most sleds contain carbon fiber and Kevlar.

Dog races are common throughout the winter season, but the granddaddy of them all is the 1,100 mile Iditarod. The race features mushers, or dog drivers, pitting their skills and the talents of their dog teams against one another. The race allows 55 and 75 dog sleds to compete in the annual race.

Although tourists don’t get to compete in an actual sled race, most dog sled providers allow visitors to try their hand at driving a sled and commanding the dog team. Several companies in Anchorage offer a variety of dog sledding opportunities for the brave and the brave at heart.

When the weather is warm and snow it just a memory, sled rides can be experienced by driving a wheeled sled along a groomed course. But if it is the real thing you are hankering for, fear not. The enterprising residents of Anchorage can offer you the real thing.

Contact Alpine Air, Alaska at (907) 783-2360 to arrange a wintery ride behind a team of sled dogs. The company promises a short helicopter ride to a nearby glacier where visitors meet up with a musher and his team.

The fee for this experience is pricey, but if you only have one visit to Alaska, what better way to take back a one-of-a-kind trip to the Lower 48.

Chugach Express is another option for a glacier ride on a dog sled. Contact the company at (907) 783-2266 for prices and reservations. Again, fees are hefty, but flightseeing on the trip to the glacier and linking up for your own dog sled ride are well worth the price.

A third choice is the IdidaRide Sled Dog Tour. Contact the company at 1-800-478-3139 to reserve a seat. The company is operated by the Seavey family and key supporters of the Iditarod race. Visitors are welcome to tour the family’s kennels and meet and greet some of the puppies training to become sled dogs.

When in Anchorage, it won’t be a choice of whether to experience dog sled ride on a glacier, but rather which tour to schedule your trip with.