Winter Woods Dog Sled Tours
First, no snow, then frigid cold, then just enough snow to finally set a trail system, then a great snow fall, then rain and warm weather... we haven't given any tours and we are now in limbo if we are going to do any tours this winter due to those many factors and more. Please send us a request if you are still interested and we will respond to you and let you know if it is going to work or not. We know this is unusual, and we apologize, but it has just been a strange winter for us so far-SO FRUSTRATING!
Also, we will be for sure be closed the month of March due to a trip to New Zealand! :)
TOURS FOR TWO! Yes,that means we will only take out a maximum of two people on one of our tours-and we only do ONE tour a day, so we fill up fast! We are a small "mom and pop" tour business/racing kennel, not a big commercial business, and we are limited to what we can offer for our tours. We have found that taking out ONE or TWO people at a time works the best for us and our small kennel of Alaskan Huskies.
If there are two people, you will each be STANDING on your own sled behind a skilled tour guide. We will take out a single person if you are intersted in doing this on your own. :) We may have you join another person who is also booking a tour as a single client. As stated above,we only take out ONE tour a day, so you can relax, enjoy meeting your team when we get back, and chat with us over hot chocolate/tea/coffee and cookies.
Our clients need to be in good physical condition since you will be actively helping us run the team! Remember, you will be STANDING on the sled and will need to help us drive the sled up hills and through the windy trails in the Stillwater State Forest.
RATE YOUR FITNESS
You've got this : You are physically active and regularly participate in outdoor activiities. You have great arm and leg strength and balance.
You'll do great: You are in good shape and occationally do physical activities. You have good arm and leg strength,can easily go up and down stairs, and maintain your balance on uneven ground.
We will see you when you get there: You aren't able to do the above, so you should think about booking with a different tour company where you ride in the sled instead of standing on the runners. :)
We are asking that when you make your requests for reservations that you tell us in an email what your physical fitness is from the choices above.
WE HAVE AGE AND WEIGHT RESTRICTIONS, please read below the pictures to find out about them.
COST: $150.00 per person/$125.00 per child (12-17) WE ONLY ACCEPT CASH OR LOCAL CHECKS, so please stop at a local ATM machine, if you need to, before coming out to our place.
Please continue reading the information after the pictures to find out more about us! :)
We will start our tour season this year on the 18th of December. Our trails are not usually ready before that and we will have to see if the snow gods provide us with enough snow to open at that time! ;) Our season ends the 31st of March if our trails last that long.
We have been training and racing sled dogs for over 30 years and we are now in our seventeenth season of offering sled dog tours. Tours are geared toward active, outdoor enthusiasts who want to do more than just go for a ride on a sled. You need to be in good physical shape to help drive the team!
Since we only take out one tour per day, so you can choose morning or afternoon-whatever works the best for your schedule! :) We like our morning tours to go out betweeen 10:00-11:00 and our afternoon tours between 1:00 and 2:00, but we are very flexible and can go at different times. We don't do tours everyday (we are retired!), so it limits how many tours we do overall.
Contact us at email@example.com and we will get back to you as soon as we can. Please let us know your physical ability when you email us.
Running dog sled tours safely depends on weather conditions and we reserve the right to cancel any ride if the conditions aren't just right for the safety of the clients and dogs.
Butch has built some awesome "double-driver" sleds that allows for one guest to stand on the runners of the sled (with their own stantion to hold onto) behind a seasoned musher.
Please click through our pictures so you get a general understanding of this.
While on the tour, we often sit down and it feels like the client is the musher of the team! It is so fun!
DRESS APPROPRIATELY for cold weather and dog paws since you will be actively involved with the team! Winter boots, snow pants, winter hat, gloves, warm socks, neck gators, and don't forget the long underwear! You are going to be outside for quite awhile and we want you to stay warm.
*We do have extras of everything to keep you warm, so if you missing any gear, we can help you out! :)
Appropriate Ages for Participants: We love taking out adults and children ages 12 and older who are physically fit and will enjoy the challenge of helping to drive a dog team.
RESTRICTIONS: We have a limit on how much weight our dog teams can pull, so the total weight OF THE CLIENT on EACH sled can't be more than 200 pounds.
Skill Level Required: People need to be in good physical shape to take our tours. It is like riding a bike or cross-country skiing, you need balance and strength to do it-when the terrain is flat, you can cruise, but when there is a hill or twists and turns in the trail, you have to work harder. Our clients need to be able to help us drive the sled through those twists and turns in the trail.
Types of Trips Offered: Our tour takes you out of our dog yard onto the winding, quiet trails of the Stillwater State Forest. Plan on experiencing what it feels like to run your own dog sled team while we travel these trails with our four-pawed friends who love to go, go, go!
You will need to set aside 1 1/2 to 2 hours of your day to spend with us and our awesome sled dogs. We are located about 12 miles northwest of Whitefish. It will take you about 15-20 minutes to get here from town.
When you first arrive, you will spend some time learning about being on a sled and how to assist in "driving" the sled to help us up the hills and around the corners of the trail. Then we will be off on a 40-50 minute adventure through the snow covered trails.
We guarantee you will be smiling when you return to the dog yard! There is always the hands-on option of helping to put your team away or watch as we do it. You will then be able to spend time with all our dogs.
Take as many pictures as you like, but you will be asked to put your phone away during the beginning of the tour for safety reasons.
Hot chocolate, hot apple cider, coffee, and cookies will be offered after the tour.
Some Guest Comments:
"What an amazing experience. I am so glad we came. Awesome time!" Tracy Lee -California
"Tons of fun! Thanks a lot!" Kris Myhre, Lewiston,MT
"Butch and Sara are down to earth, friendly people who make you feel at home! Great trip and great dogs. Do not go anywhere else!" Ken Maload, Los Vegas, Nevada
"This was SUCH a fun experience and very hands on. We had a chance to connect with the dogs and on the outing, I felt like I was directing the team! We will definitely be doing it again on our next trip to Whitefish." Lydia, Emily, and Ben Keisler
"This experience was much better than the dog sled ride I took in Norway. It was fun being actively involved with running the team instead of just sitting in a sled!" Cassie Fussner, Tri Cities, Washington
Certifications and Memberships:
Butch has won the "Race To The Sky 350 mile Dog Sled Race"-TWICE! and the Seeley Lake 100." He has won the "Best Cared For Team Award" numerous times. He is very experienced and loves what he does.
2009: Sara took third place in a local race called "Flathead Sled Dog Days" and won "Best Cared-For Team" award! The race took place over two days, 25 miles each day for a total of a 50 mile race.
2010: Sara won the 6-8 dog class in the Flathead Sled Dog Days race on January 8th and 9th! 50 total miles.
2011: Sara took 9th place and Butch took 12th place in the Flathead Sled Dog Race. 50 total miles
2012: Sara took third place and Butch took eleventh place in the Flathead Sled Dog Days Race. (Butch purposely gave me the fast dogs! :)
2016: Sara won the Flathead Classic 5 mile race.
2018: Butch placed 4th in the Flathead Classic 5 mile race.
2020: Butch took third in the 16 miles, 6-dog race at the Flathead Classic.