Training Trip


Miles traveled
High Temperature
Low Temperature
Lard eaten by dogs today
1.5 lbs.


Lesson Plans

What's it like living in a tent?

Worksheet Included!

Subject: English/Language Arts

Grade Level: All Grades


Tent Talk

Listen to today's audio update

Daily Dilemma

We have been trying to figure out where the best place for us to camp is, and we would like your help. Yesterday we camped on a lake near the shore. Tonight we are camped in the woods about 40 feet from the lake. Where do you think we should try to camp during the adventure? On lakes, or in the woods? Please explain your answer.

I used to think dogsledding meant riding on a sled while being pulled by dogs. Today we traveled from Cherokee Lake to Frost Lake--a mere 7 miles--and I found out this is not always the case. Subzero temperatures, heavy snowfall, and harsh winds kept our progress limited. And no one got to ride on the sled.

Left: Adam sneaking a short ride on the sled

In the best conditions, either Dave or I will ski out ahead of the dogs and the other will ride on the sled. If the snow is too deep for skiing, usually one of us will snowshoe in front of the dogs instead of skiing. If snow conditions are very poor, we will both snowshoe ahead of the dogs to give them the best possible trail for pulling the sled.

Right: Adam blazes the trail for the eager dogs. Heavy snows made travel very hard for the past few days.

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Adam turns the sled over to scrape the slush and ice buildup on the sled. If the sled has any slush on the runners, it becomes too difficult for the dogs to pull.
But some days (like today, for example) the snow is too deep and fresh for the dogs to pull the sled on their own. In these cases, one or both of us has to push the sled to keep it moving. We got by most of the day today with only one of us pushing the sled. This was fortunate, since one of us was able to snowshoe out in front and check for slush and thin ice with an ice chisel.
We only got stuck in the slush once today, but it took nearly 30 minutes to chip all the ice (frozen slush) off the bottom of the sled and the runners. You might think having ice on the bottom of our sled would make it faster; it actually cements our heavy sled to the snow in a matter of seconds. Yesterday, Dave and I both fell though the ice on a river. This could have been a catastrophe, but the water was only a few feet deep. Falling through the ice must be avoided at all costs. The potential onset of hypothermia is life-threatening if not treated quickly and effectively. We promise to do our best not to fall though again (at least for a while).

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What animal do you think made this peculiar trail? For a clue, check out the Beasts of the Boreal.

Even though we only traveled 7 miles today, it still felt like a long, hard day of work. But the hard days make the easy days easy. That, and riding on the back of the sled, shouting, "On Munchkin! On Thistle! On Daisy! On Fennel! Keep up the good work!"

Left: A close up of the otter's trail. Since we've left on our training trip, we've gotten lots and lots of snow, making animal tracks very visible. Why do you think that too much snow might make it difficult to travel across the lakes?

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