Edit ModuleShow Tags

Top 5 Places to Dog Sled in Minnesota

Try the exhilarating experience of dog sledding and take in the beauty of winter in Minnesota.


Published:

Dog sledding. Photo by Maria Moskvitsova/Fotolia

Flying through the snowy Minnesotan countryside led by a pack of adorable and extremely athletic dogs—can you think of a better winter adventure than that? If you have never experienced dog sledding before, Minnesota is the place to be. From the north central region down the shoreline of Lake Superior, there are an abundance of outfitters available to take you on a beautiful journey across frozen lakes and through snow-dusted forests. There are also several tours closer to the Twin Cities, proving that you don't need to head into the Northwoods to enjoy a dog-powered sleigh ride.

Before you go, make sure to pack a pair of snowboarding goggles or sunglasses, as the energetic pups can kick up snow along the ride. And don't forget your camera—the views from your sled truly can't be beat. If you're concerned about the warming temperatures, the thick layers of snow and ice, especially in the colder northern regions, aren't melting anytime soon. You can often plan your dog sledding excursion through early April (check availability on individual sites). Here are our top five dog sledding cities to start your planning for one of the most unique ways to travel and experience the beauty of winter in Minnesota.

Ely
The unofficial capital of dog sledding in Minnesota, Ely touts more dog sled trip providers than anywhere else in the world (according to the Ely Chamber of Commerce). Start your adventure at Chilly Dogs with a meet-the-dogs session and an orientation on the history of dog sledding and the Alaskan Husky breed. During your journey, adults over 15 have the opportunity to drive the sled for half the trip, with a professional guide or sledmate driving the rest of the way. At White Wolf Dogsled Trips, visitors can spend a full day mushing through Superior National Forest, or keep the fun going with a two-night camping trip and a four-night excursion with accommodations through the Grand Ely Lodge. Wintergreen Dogsled Lodge offers one-of-a-lifetime multi-day trips from beginner outings to Arctic adventures that have groups traveling through Canada and spending time with the Polar Inuit. While in Ely, don't miss visiting the International Wolf Center, hiking to Kawishiwi Falls, and getting a glimpse of the Northern Lights.

Grand Marais
In one of the northernmost cities on the North Shore, Grand Marais features several dog sledding outfitters to make your winter trip to Lake Superior a memorable one. Points Unknown Dog Sled Experiences puts the focus on guests getting to know the dogs through spending time on the trails with them and offering kennel tours for extra quality time. The local outfitter provides 1.5 and three-hour trips, with the exciting addition of a 1.5-hour night sledding experience. For visitors staying for a weekend getaway, take advantage of the ease Gunflint Lodge provides guests by booking their dog sledding trips through the hotel. Gunflint Lodge offers an unforgettable experience through the boreal forest with journeys ranging from 30 minutes to four hours.

Duluth
Duluth is always a go-to destination for winter travelers with its downtown filled with local stores and restaurants, as well as its proximity to outdoor activities. Duluth is also a hub for dog sledding and hosts the annual John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon, where teams battle it out to see who is top dog. The small but mighty racing team at Endurance Kennels offers a variety of affordable sled rides via their Eurohound pups, including driving your own sled dog team and a 55-minute night ride lit by headlamp or full moonlight. The local non-profit outdoor education program, Positive Energy Outdoors, has multiple dog sledding outings, perfect for small children and or your next work function.

Monticello
An hour's drive from the Twin Cities, Silent Run Adventures in Monticello provides educational demonstrations with its team of Siberian Huskies and rides through the "Big Woods" of Lake Maria State Park. Silent Run's half day and extended adventures allow for many opportunities to view and photography the wildlife and beautiful surroundings.

Hastings
Known as a horse and husky homestead, HHH Ranch offers outdoor entertainment all year long with horse rides in the warmer months and dog sledding in the winter. Located just outside Hastings (about half an hour from the Twin Cities), Hastings Huskies & Horses (HHH) Ranch makes it possible for families and visitors to experience the joy of dog sledding without the road trip. Visitors can take an hour-long ride, listen to an educational program, and play with the puppies on a kennel tour.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

About This Blog

Whether you are a seasoned Twin Cities traveler or planning your first trip to Minnesota, this blog will introduce you to many new adventures to add to your itinerary. From day trips and scenic discoveries to luxurious girls weekends, travel tips, and insider scoops, our editors will give you all the information you need to enjoy your stay Up North.

Learn about the contributing writers.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Travel Blog

It's Farmers Market Season

No matter where you live in Minnesota, fresh produce, flowers and homemade goodies await

Origami in the Garden

The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum's latest exhibit puts the art of folding paper on full display with a garden and metal twist

New Ways to Explore 3 Classic MN Destinations

From Fort Snelling to the North Shore, check out this summer's technological updates to historic and wild Minnesota places

Sue Z.'s Charitable Check-In: May

This month, Sue Z. recommends supporting local student chefs with a dinner at Saint Dinette

What to Wear + Where to Go: Music Festivals

Your style guide for Minnesota music festivals

Mesabi Trail Offers New Views in Northern Minnesota

The Mesabi Trail, a 120-mile paved cycling and hiking trail that spans the Mesabi Iron Range, recently opened a new connection in Virginia, MN that crosses the state's tallest bridge and offers amazing views of former minelands.

Glensheen Mansion Bonfire Nights

Enjoy this summer tradition from one of the most iconic estates in the state

Twin Cities Festival Spring Babies

If April showers bring May flowers, spring babies bring fun for the whole family

Record Store Day: Where to Find Rare Releases in MN

On April 21, rock out at mini-music festivals around the state, dig into gourmet donuts, and collect the rare vinyls available one time a year

Catch the Lyrids Meteor Shower

The meteor shower peaks April 21 and 22, just in time for Earth Day

A Day Trip to Excelsior

Just 20 miles west of the Twin Cities, this waterfront town is complete with charming shops and lakeside dining

Night Art Gallery Is Your Sober Night Out

The Lindstrom art gallery entertains with hors d'oeuvres, tons of art available for purchase, and non-alcholic drinks

Treasure Island Resort & Casino 2018 Summer Concert Series

Check out the awe-inspiring lineup of summer concerts at Treasure Island Resort & Casino.

Weekend Activities to Satisfy Your Inner-Child

Check out these weekend activities that will have you feeling like a kid again.
Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags