December 07, 2008

A bunch of dark and blurry photos (and one video) from this afternoon's kicksledding trip to Ice Lake...

I've been doing a lot of kicksledding lately. Mostly they've been short (6 km) runs at night, but today Jade and I went for a longer trip to Ice Lake.

We took the most direct route to get there, which leads us over a 4-wheeler-wrecked lumpy, bumpy trail. Jade, who was sitting on a thick foam pad, kept saying that it was bumpy. I asked her if I should slow the dogs down and she said, "Yeah. Easy. Easy". That's the first time she's ever wanted me to slow the dogs down.

A b-b-b-b-b-b-bum-py section of trail with Nanuq and Kodiak pulling strongly.

The dogs were pulling strongly and it didn't take long before we reached the lake. I let the dogs off to run so Jade and I could play in the snow. Sorry for the fuzziness and darkness of the pictures, but it was a cloudy day and the sun wasn't very strong so late in the afternoon.

Furry, fuzzy and fast, the dogs romp and play.

Radioactive alien dogs with lazer-beam vision.

Jade often wants to make snowmen, but has trouble packing the snow when it's dry and powdery. Instead, she shifts it and throws it and rolls around in it. She really likes snow.

Jade plays with the snow. (Her boots were made by Kara)

Lately, Jade has taken great pleasure in pretending she's a puppy. I have no problems with this whatsoever. It makes it easier to get her to come when I call her.

Jade pretends she's a puppy and goes to play with Nanuq. Fortunately, she hasn't adoped the whole butt-sniffing thing.

Even though the day was dark and cloudy, the air was relatively warm. We played around on the lake and could have done so for hours.

Kodiak takes a snow bath.

Jade takes a snow bath.

"Puppy" on the lake.

What a great trick! This puppy knows how to wave!

We crossed the lake, following snow machine tracks and ski tracks and foot prints. At the end of the lake, I expected to see some rabbit highways, but there was only one. The rabbit population in the area seems to have crashed. I wonder if it's from natural causes or from a summer of explosive blasts and from being pelted by rocks and debris.

A steeper section of shoreline.

Jade insisted on walking (and crawling) across most of the lake. That's not a behaviour I want to discourage in any way. Eventually, she wanted me to carry her, but I convinced her that it would be better to ride on the back of the kicksled while I pulled. She really is a natural.

The blurriest picture of the bunch. Included only because of its impressive blurriness.

A natural musher. The steamy fog is from me, pulling Jade and the sled up the hill. The dogs were still on their break.

Jade the Musher.

I always wait for Jade's command to go before I start pulling. I keep telling her to say "hike" but she keeps insisting that the proper command is "pull!"

When we got to the top of the hill, Jade insisted that she have a turn pulling the kicksled while I ride on the back. If anything, she's fair.

Jade takes a turn pulling the kicksled.

It was getting dark so it was time to head home. I strapped Jade back into her seat and hooked the dogs back up to their tug lines. They were enthusiastic pullers and we made good time.

I took a video on one stretch of trail. If you look closely, you can see Nanuq slacking off especially as we reach the pond. We saw some people we knew there so decided to stop for a visit. I'm so grateful that I live somewhere where I can do this with my daughter right out of my backyard.

By the way, taking video while being pulled by dogs is harder than I thought. I don't know how Stacie does it. I mean, look at the quality of this footage!


dogsled_stacie said...

No kidding it's hard!! That's why I'm asking for a helmet cam for xmas. lol

Great video! It's fun to see others run dogs and I love Jade's little helmet bobbing around in front of the camera!

Jennybell said...

If I show this to my son he will want you to adopt him! He loves the snow! 80 and sunny, he's in the house. 0 and 3 ft of snow, you can't get the kid inside! and the dogs! He's love love love that! The kid was made for a more northern climate!

Meandering Michael said...

Stacie, I hope you get your wish!

Jennybell, the kid has good taste in weather.

1234567890 said...

Great post, looks like a lot of fun. Are you running two single lines for the dogs, or is it made as a double line?

Meandering Michael said...

Two single lines with Nanuq's shortened slightly so he tries to keep pace with Kodiak. While I often run them as a "fan", I sometimes use a short neckline to keep them turning and running together, depending on what trail we're on.

Peter Tyrrell said...

A quick google search turned up a number of results for "DIY steadycam".