We decided to start the New Year off right by going snowshoeing on New Year’s Day. Our friends and their young daughter came with us.
We planned to go back up to Source Lake but didn’t really have an agenda. We weren’t sure how long our friend’s daughter would last – or how long they would last if they were carrying her – so we thought we would just go as far as we could and then turn around.
When we got there, we learned that our friends planned to pull their daughter in a plastic sled. That probably wasn’t the best plan.
It was clear after only a couple of hundred feet on relatively flat ground that their daughter was going to keep tipping out of the sled. Her Dad also realized that pulling that sled up a steep hill through a narrow, bumpy path, and possibly over a couple of creek crossings, was not going to work for him.
As we had headed near what we thought was the trailhead (because we saw a lot of people), we realized that we had headed the wrong way. We ended up at a snow hill where people were sledding. We decided we would just do that instead.
Those of you who have been reading our stories for a while know that Chester, and especially Gretel, pull really hard on the leash when we are hiking. We always joke that they are our uphill assist and that they could probably pull a sled.
We decided to try that theory out. We hooked Chester and Gretel up to the front of our friend’s sled and shouted mush 🙂
Well, it turned out that it was too hard for them to pull the sled through the snow. I actually think it was because they were more confused than anything. Usually they are out in front of us pulling. Suddenly were out in front of them.
I think they were so confused that they didn’t try very hard. They saw us out in front of them but felt a heavy pull from behind so they probably thought they were tied to something immovable. I have a friend that used to weight pull with her dogs and that is a common tendency.
We tried calling them and giving the sled a push. We tried helping them pull the sled.
It was clear this wasn’t going to work so we abandoned that idea, hiked to the top of the hill and unloaded our stuff.
I spread out Chester and Gretel’s Highlands Bed for them to sit on. I covered them with my down blanket and tied their leashes to a couple our packs. I figured that although they could still bolt after something they wouldn’t get very far dragging 50 lbs of gear. After all, they couldn’t pull a 50 lb sled up a hill 🙂
Chester and Gretel watched as we all took turns on the sled. The funny thing is, the adults spent way more time on the sled than our friend’s kid did!
It was a great way to start off the year – fresh air, good friends, acting like a kid and hanging with the dogs outdoors.