• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
2m 11s

Get Out: Skijoring

By Brett Shepard 8:08 AM March 13, 2014

More than 20 miles of multi-use trails in Anchorage are open to skijoring.

Anchorage has miles and miles of trails throughout the city, and there are countless ways you can explore the network of paths.

In this week’s edition of Get Out, I looked at one of the more unique ways to venture around Anchorage — and your favorite four-legged friend gets to go with you.

“It’s such a hoot to go zipping around the woods,” said skijoring club member Chuck Pratt.

From the looks of it, skijoring appears very similar to dog mushing. The main exception is that the dogs don’t do the bulk of the work. You and the dogs work together as a team. They run and you ski.

“I like being out,” Pratt said. “I like being out with the dogs. It gives me a reason to get out.”

This sport may look pretty daunting to the casual passerby, but it’s something almost anyone can enjoy, said skijorer Kimberly Wells.

“It’s always helpful to at least kind of know how to ski. I didn’t do it that way and I fell a lot in the beginning. But I stuck with it. If you know how to ski it’s very helpful,” Wells said. “It’s not a must, but it’s a good idea.”

I already know how to ski and I found the added power of the dog made for an even more exciting ski trip.

We skied with primarily husky breeds, but a husky isn’t necessary for this sport.

“I’ve seen people skijor with mastiffs, Rottweilers, Dobermans, poodles and Dalmatians. I personally skijored with Dalmatians, so quite a variety of dogs,” Wells said. “Mixed breeds and otherwise are suitable. If they want to pull and be out there with you, take them out.”

Kimberly didn’t mention basset hounds, so even though my dog Einstein loves the snow we probably won’t be the next great skijoring duo.

If you are interested in getting involved in this sport, the Anchorage Skijoring Club is really a one-stop shop for everyone from beginners to seasoned skijorers.

“We have fun runs for beginners. We also have races,” Pratt said. “We term them races, but everybody is welcome to come and show up. It’s a real low pressure event.”

More than 20 miles of multi-use trails in Anchorage are open to skijoring. If you are looking for a new way for you and your pooch to explore Anchorage and get in some exercise, this might be the sport for you.

If you have any ideas for our get out series you can email me at bshepard@ktva.com.

Latest Stories

  • Crime

    Former Anchorage substitute teacher sentenced for child pornography

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Oct 09, 23:03

    For distributing child pornography and photos of Anchorage students, a former school employee will spend 15 years in prison. U.S. District Judge Sharon Gleason handed the sentence down to 34-year-old Daniel Brown on Friday after Brown pleaded guilty to a single count of sexual exploitation of a child by distributing child pornography. Anchorage police were […]

  • Sports

    Dimond, Chugiak advance

    by Dave Goldman on Oct 09, 23:01

    There’s more football next week for Dimond and Chugiak high schools. Each advanced to the state semi-finals after victories on Friday. The Lynx got three touchdowns from Rafa Zavala in a 34-26 win. The Lynx went up 34-14 in the second half on J.J. Tanuvasa’s catch and run, but Colony fought back. Steven Bilafer accounted for all four […]

  • News

    Four-legged first responders ready when tragedy strikes

    by Bonney Bowman on Oct 09, 22:42

    A group of Anchorage dogs and their handlers are training to be an emotional rescue team for Alaskans facing terrible times. The pups are practicing to become crisis response canines. That’s a step beyond therapy dog. They’ll actually respond when tragedy strikes, like a school shooting or a natural disaster. “Wherever people are having a heck […]

  • News

    Berkowitz on SAP: ‘It will get finished’

    by Eric Ruble on Oct 09, 22:22

    In 2011, former Mayor Dan Sullivan first proposed the SAP Synergy system as a more efficient way for the Municipality of Anchorage to keep track of payroll and other programs.  It was planned to take 18 months to implement and cost $9.6 million. Four years later, the project is far from complete and has already […]

  • News

    Trio of suicides leaves Alaska village in grief

    by Associated Press on Oct 09, 20:09

    An entire village on Alaska’s western coast is grieving the back-to-back suicides of three young adults -with each subsequent death influenced by the preceding one. A regional tribal health organization is sending an Alaska Native suicide-response-and-prevention team to Hooper Bay next week in what essentially will be a community debriefing. But in a region with […]

  • News

    Community rallies to rebuild Silver Fox Inn

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 09, 19:39

    A faulty fuse box was to blame for Wednesday’s fire at the Silver Fox Inn in Wasilla that caused more than $100,000 of damage, managers said. The roof needs to be repaired and there’s a massive hole in the floor, as well as smoke damage all around the restaurant and bar. Michelle Alley said they’re […]

  • News

    State says Alaskans should test for radon

    by Lauren Maxwell on Oct 09, 19:20

    The Alaska Department of Health is recommending that every Alaskan test their home for the presence of radon. According to the latest Bulletin from the Department of Epidemiology, the colorless, odorless gas is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers in the U.S. The Department calls radon “an under-recognized health risk that warrants widespread […]

  • Crime

    Murder convictions overturned in 2006 homicide case

    by Shannon Kemp on Oct 09, 18:53

    An Anchorage man has been given another opportunity to go before a jury and defend his actions that led to the death of two people on New Year’s Eve in 2006. Ryan Sanders, now 31, applied for a hearing to include a key piece of evidence excluded in his original trial, which resulted in a […]