I just got back from my girl’s weekend away in Vermont with my friend, Sue. We had a great time, despite not so great weather, but that was ok, we made the best of it.
We left about 11:00 on Friday and it pretty much rained the whole way up. Ok, poured in some areas, actually. I had checked accuweather and they said cloudy with a chance of showers in the morning. Not so much. I wouldn’t have cared except we had reservations to go dog sledding that night at 6:00. They called to confirm and said the weather was supposed to clear and the trails were great.
Sue and I made it to the Inn by 3:00 stopping for a quick bite to eat and a few stores along the way. As we all watched it downpour we wondered if the tour would still go in the rain. We decided to head that way anyway and see what was up. We said hi to Mike & Julie, dropped our bags in our room and headed to Great River Outfitters.
It was really raining when we got there. The doors were locked but a woman was standing outside waiting. She asked us if we were there for the tour and we said yes but wasn’t sure they would go in the rain. She said she was also wondering if the 5:00 and 6:00 tour would be off. She was just waiting for the team to come back and she would ask.
The dogs soon arrived with the group it had just taken and we watched as the people walked into the lodge soaked to the skin with their hair dripping. The owner, Craig, asked us if we wanted to go out right then. Yeah, they were still running the sled (if we bagged we still had to pay). Sue and I looked at each other wondering how wet & miserable we were going to be but we went for it. Of course, I told Sue to bring water proof pants, but what did I wear?
Clingy, Yoga pants. So smart of me! Thank God there was a break in the weather and it did stop raining.
We headed out to meet the dogs and I was surprised that they were so small. I commented to the musher, Alex, that the dogs were the size of coyotes and he agreed. I thought they would be big dogs but they weren’t at all.
Alex said one of could go in the basket and the other standing and then we could swap. Sue sat and I went to get in back of her and Alex says, “No, that’s were I go. You’re on the back”.
I had to put my feet on these two tiny rudders that my feet were bigger than and just hold on to a wooden bar. Fabulous. I asked Alex if anyone had ever gotten tossed off and he said “oh yeah, we have lost a few”. I so knew that was going to be me.
Off we went and the dogs honestly didn’t run that fast. He said anything over 50 degrees and the dogs over heat and can’t run in that weather. It wasn’t quite 50 but it was warmer so he said the dogs were running slower than normal.
I was doing ok on the sled until I could see a hill approaching and a corner right after it. I was sure this was where I was heading into the bushes. I decided to wrap my arms around the bar and lean into the corner with the sled. This was ok until I heard the bar crack. I was putting all of my weight it and the bar was not happy. I made it around the corner and let up off the bar.
Sue was just sitting with a blanket over her and having a beautiful view while I sweating out getting chucked off the freakin’ thing. To top it off, I had worked out with Steve on Wednesday night and my arms were killing me on Friday. Holding onto that damn bar was so painful I wasn’t sure I had the strength to old on!
At the switch point I told Sue she could stay where she was if she wanted. She had just gotten over the flu and it was kind of stressful so I just stayed on. Alex said he has had 90 year old women in the back so I was determined I could handle it. I managed to stay on for the whole ride and it was a great experience.
The tour guide was very nice and friendly, the views beautiful and dogs were exquisite. I would highly recommend this to anyone who wants a fun and unique experience.
Alex – who by the way is from Harvard, Ma right next door to Shirley. Small world!
The trip was awesome and I am so glad we did this. It was one of the most fun things I have done in a long time!
Question of the day: Have you ever gone dog Sledding? Would you go?