Dog Day of Winter

Learn everything you ever wanted to know about skijoring.

I’ve always been fascinated by skijoring, a winter sport wherein a person on skis is pulled along by a horse, dog or even a car. And it seems plenty of people across the state share my interest, which is why Devil’s Thumb Ranch offers Skijoring Clinics every month or so.

Sounds like fun, doesn’t it? If you want to try your hand, there are a few things you need to know first: “You should be using the skate-ski technique,” explains Devil’s Thumb’s Igor Guziur, “not the traditional cross-country skiing with the longer skis. It’s recommended that you take some skate-ski lessons before you take the skijoring lesson.”

And be aware of your dog’s limitations: “Some dogs, older dogs and overweight dogs, they just don’t feel like doing this exercise,” Guziur says. “The more active dogs usually have a great time, but you need to make the call and decide if your dog is a good dog for pulling.”

If you (and your pooch) pass those preliminary tests, then the skijoring world is your oyster: “People come back from these lessons with a big smile,” notes Guziur. Head to the ranch, 3530 County Road 83 in Tabernash, at 10 a.m. today for the clinic. Bring your dog; the charge is $50 to $60, depending on the type of equipment you might need to rent. Call 1-970-726-8231 or visit www.devilsthumbranch.com; additional clinics will be held on January 31 and March 1.
Sun., Jan. 4, 10 a.m.; Sat., Jan. 31, 10 a.m.; Sun., March 1, 10 a.m., 2009

 
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