North Adventure

AIS14: Backstage at a Husky Farm

Backstage at a Husky Farm

Quick Facts

Available: October 1 - May 1
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
Times: 10:00 - 15:00

Group Size: Maximum 2
Intensity: Strenuous
Price: Per person: 2695,-

There's a lot going on behind the scenes to make a dogsledding race (or even just a tour) possible. This unique opportunity will let you experience "backstage life" for the handlers that work every day to care for and train husky dog racing teams. You will spend your morning working closely with Sølvi Monsen, an active professional dog musher who is preparing for her next Finnmarksløpet race.

Your tour will start after breakfast with transport from Alta down to Gargia Lodge, a mountain lodge south of Alta. When you arrive, you'll get an overview of what to expect and how to behave with the dogs (YOU, for example, are the boss of the dogs and not the other way around!). Then it's over to the workshop to mix and prepare breakfast for all of the dogs.

Once in the kennel, you'll greet each of the dogs and get acquainted. You'll discover that as a handler, even for just a few hours, you will begin to develop a stronger relationship with the dogs than you would have as guest taking just a short ride with them. The next order of business is breakfast, so you'll feed them and talk with them as they eat.

And that's just the start of the day! You'll take on the always-changing checklist that every dog handler has to follow, which can include any number of tasks such as cleaning up in the dog yard, washing and tidying gear and equipment, spreading fresh hay in the dog houses, clipping claws, filling in holes that the dogs have been digging, shoveling snow, taking the dogs on training runs with a sled or ATV, and training puppies to obey commands and respond to their names. And no matter what the task, you'll have the cheerful company of an extended family of dogs, all of whom are delighted to get your attention and eager to be your friend and companion.

With all the chores complete, you'll head inside the lodge at Gargia for a welcome hot lunch, and time over lunch to talk about past races and upcoming events.

The tour includes transport from and back to Alta, the morning dog handler session (approximately 2.5 hours) and lunch. This is a private, personal tour and group size is limited to only 1-2 guests per day (if you have a larger group, please contact us). The tour is designed to give you an authentic experience as a dog handler, so be prepared to come and work! Dress for outdoor activity, bring your energy and enthusiasm, and prepare for muddy paws. The minimum age for this tour is 16 years.