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Winter Dog Sled Adventures in Bayfield, WI

Friday, January 16th, 2015

Dog Sled Adventures and Winter Activities in Bayfield, WI

Winter Dog Sled Adventures with Wolfsong Adventures in Mushing

Did you know that you can enjoy a great winter getaway in Bayfield, Wisconsin with a Sled Dog experience provided by our local outfitter, Wolfsong Adventures in Mushing? These hands-on trips include the opportunity to get to know the dogs, harness them up, and drive your own team (or ride along in the “basket” as a passenger if you prefer).

Mushing is an exhilarating adventure, and you’re sure to find some amazing photo opportunities along the trail as well. Do you believe travel is about getting right into the action? Well this is a bit like being shot out of a cannon! If you’ve never been mushing, you should try it.

The mushing experience is a lot more than just a sled dog run through the woods. When you meet your team leader and the sled dogs for the first time, you’ll soon realize this adventure is beyond the ordinary. You will laugh on this day. You may cry. You definitely will grow from the experience, and I daresay it might even change your life in some way.

Take the opportunity to greet each dog and look them in the eye. Each animal has its own personality, as well as a role/function on the sled dog team. As you feed the dogs a pre-run snack of their favorite kibbles (mixed with icy cold water) you’ll sense the excitement building among the dog sled team. Imagine a giant rubber band winding ever tighter, and then poised, waiting, ready to explode like a great bolt of energy, flying through the forest.
Dog Sledding Wisconsin Weekend Getaways
One by one, you help to harness the dogs in their designated spots along the gang line. The dogs yip and pant in anticipation as your team leader makes a thorough check to see that everything is correctly in place. You receive instructions about staying up on the runners, the narrow pieces of wood the sled rides on, which extend behind the basket so the Musher can stand on them.

When all is set, you release your snow hook (a large metal hook you drive into firm snow to anchor your team and sled for short periods of time) and get ready for the ride of your life.   You are off: rocketing through the woods like Bullet Bill in Mario Kart. The best advice: remain calm and hang on!

See, here’s the thing: you don’t really drive a dog sled. Of course there are commands that mushers use to communicate with the team, but you don’t actually “steer” the sled. If you are rigid, or if you try to impose your will on the dogs, they will leave you lying in the snow. (Again, I’m speaking from experience here: I had quite an amazing ‘snow beard’ when I fell off the sled my first time mushing.) The best advice is to relax, trust the dogs, and enjoy the ride.
Sled Dog Tours, Bayfield WI
You will hear the dogs breathing together as they sync up and become a living machine. You hear the swish of the snow under the sled rails, the creaking sounds of the rigging and the sled under strain. Yet somehow, with all these sounds surrounding you, and snow flying up from the trail, it is extremely peaceful and quiet on the back of a dog sled. Personally, I found it to be a  remarkably solitary experience, even within the team setting (we had 3-4 sleds going on each of my trips).

Did I mention that the scenery is breath taking? When close forest trails give way to sun-dappled open fields, full of clean white snow, it’s genuinely breathtaking.
Sled Dog Wisconsin Getaways
When the lead musher yells, “Gee!” and you take a fast right turn, then head into a straightaway you feel the energy of the sled dog team. Your sled goes faster and faster as the icy air flies by and you catch your breath in giant frosty (delicious) gulps as you stand on the sled rails, holding firmly to the handlebow.

Can one Mushing experience possibly be enough? I don’t think so. It is worth every single penny to do this. In fact, I recommend coming up for a long weekend stay to enjoy multiple sled dog runs over the course of a few days/nights. The Adventures in Mushing Long Weekend w/ Night Run package includes two day runs to gain experience, followed by a moon and star-lit Night Run you’ll remember the rest of your life.
Dog Sled Team, Bayfield WI
When you get back to Old Rittenhouse Inn, we’ll have hot cocoa and cookies ready for you to enjoy in your guest room or suite. Perhaps you’d enjoy some wine or dinner. Let our staff take care of all the details so you don’t have to!

Winter only lasts so long, so what are you waiting for? Call us today to reserve your lodging and we’ll help set up the adventure of the year. Call today: 715-779-5111

Winter in Bayfield

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Wisconsin Winter GetawaysAh, winter. A time to stretch out and relax, and enjoy all there is to do here during the season: skiing, skating, dogsledding, ice-fishing, hiking…. or just curl up with a book! The options are endless once you settle into the laid-back vibe that is Bayfield in winter time.

Here at the Inn, we’re also using this time to catch up on some maintenance of our lovely buildings, and dreaming up more improvements! We recently replaced the tile in several of our bathrooms and whirlpool surrounds, and are very happy with the results. We’re also finding creative ways to add elegant shelf space in our bathrooms, aided by our on-staff woodworking wizard, Don German. For those who have noticed our wonderful new sign that was installed here at the Rittenhouse Inn in summer 2011, that was Don’s work!

Wisconsin Winter Getaways at Old Rittenhouse InnWe’re also using this time to prepare for our upcoming Bayfield, WI events: a Red Wine Tasting on Feb 3-4, and Valentines Dining and Packages from February 10-14. After Valentines Day, we look forward to Book Across the Bay on February 18th, The American Birkebiener xc ski race on February 25, and the Bayfield Winter Carnival on March 2-4. There are so many fun reasons to come to Bayfield this time of year, we hope you’ll join us!

Of course we are offering great winter rates and lodging specials. Give us a call at 715-779-5111 and plan your winter getaway in Bayfield.