We started 2020 off on the right foot by participating in the Running Room’s Resolution 5k. We like to do this run every year as a renewal of our commitment to remain active throughout the year.
The dogs and I also signed up for our 2nd Iron Paws. I have a couple of injuries that will prevent us from doing much kick sledding so I signed us up for the recreational canicross category instead. The Resolution run also counted towards our runs for the 1st week of Iron Paws…..bonus!!
Well it’s official. We received our 2019 Iron Paws medal today for the 2 dog sled category. Even though the weather wasn’t the greatest (damn Polar Vortex), we really enjoyed the challenge. Looking forward to doing it again next year.
Well my first Iron Paws has come to an end. We did pretty good considering we got very few points over the last two weeks because of the damn polar vortex. Overall we finished 75th out of 296. In the 2 dog sled category we finished 7th overall. The Edmonton Regional Group finished 12th overall and Team Spirit came in tied for 2nd place in our region. It was great to meet so many people in our area that love to get outside and play with their dogs. I definitely plan on doing another Iron Paws.
February 2nd is National Sled Dog Day. Unfortunately it is way to cold today to go for a kicksled run (-33C with the wind chill) so I have to use pictures from a couple of weeks ago. I played with a few filters to jazz them up a bit.
Kicksledding this winter has been fun but painful. I’ve had a few spectacular wipeouts. First run of the season…I made it through the entire run without wiping out. Got to the parking lot and the dogs took a sharp corner to get to Don and I ended up with one ski caught on a snow pile covering a curb and flipped on my right side. Don was so busy laughing and videoing that he forgot to catch the dogs and the sled as they ran by.
Today was my best wipeout ever. We were 1/2 way through the 4km run at Blackfoot. During a steep downhill run, Spirit stopped to gobble up a frozen ‘poop-sicle” on the trail. The sled caught up to her and was going to hit her so I bailed. Got the tow rope and one of the sled skis tangled around my ankle as the dogs took off running again. Big boo boo and fat ankle. Hope this won’t end my Iron Paws season 💔😟 (and yes that is dog hair all over my socks….can’t vacuum with a boo boo right?! 😂). I am hoping that at least I can get some sympathy points…maybe some spoiling and extra attention from the skinny guy. A girl can dream?!??!?
Just for a little winter fun and motivation, I have signed up for the 2019 Iron Paws Stage Race. It is a 6 week virtual sled dog race. The whole idea is to get you and your dogs out and active and meeting up with local like minded people. It also includes some fun challenges that you must do each week.
For our first week we have been challenged to create a magazine cover featuring our team. This is what I came up with:
We accumulate points by participating in races, going on group training runs and participating in regional events. As long as we do at least one run per week we should earn a medal at the end of the 6 week program. The real reward is the time spent and memories made with your dogs.
Sometimes it can be hard to keep motivated during a cold Alberta winter so I am hoping this virtual race and meeting up with other Kicksled/canicross/skijor/bikejor teams will keep us going out and about.
To start our New Year off on the right foot and accumulate our first points, the dogs and I did the Running Room 5km Resolution run as a canicross team.
After Brodie’s learn to pull class last weekend, I had planned to take the dogs out this weekend and introduce Brodie to a kicksled and then if things went well, connect them to the kicksled as a team. Mother Nature actually cooperated and gave us a good dump of snow yesterday, so rather than pulling the sled on grass they got to work in the snow with me riding and kicking behind them. We didn’t get much speed or distance but it was a decent first effort.
Yesterday Brodie and I took a dry land pulling clinic at the Nordic Ski Club in Fort Saskatchewan. Dogs with any kind of obedience training have a hard time transitioning to pulling while in harness and he was no exception. We did manage to get him to pull me on the scooter a few times. My hope is that he will like this pulling game so that he can join Spirit and I kick sledding this winter. Thanks to Marc Debrule for the great pix.