Archive for the ‘Hiking & Packing’ Categoryby Northernmost on September 22, 2013 in ACTIVITIES & WORK, Hiking & Packing, Lyra with No Comments
Lyra completed her second WPD-leg today on a hike along the Åbyälven River north of Skellefteå. My mother accompanied us and we had a lovely day on the trail, following the winding forest river from Blåfors to Renholmen. Lyra loves going on adventures and the weight on her back didn’t seem to slow her down one bit. We affectionately call her Lyra-Myra, as “myra” means ant in Swedish, and Lyra may be a bit on the smaller side, but she is strong and tireless like a worker ant.
The summer has quickly turned into autumn and today’s cool weather was ideal for a packing trip.
Love the colours of September. The trees seem to change from green to yellow and red overnight.
Besides pike, perch and whitefish, the Åbyälven River also has populations of salmon, sea trout and grayling. The protected freshwater pearl mussel can also be found here.
Going for a swim?
My mother Kaisa ♥
We found chantarelles in the forest and took a break to pick mushrooms and lingonberries.
A beaver had left nibbled trees and brushpiles along the trail. We heard him jump into the water but didn’t catch a glimpse of him this time.
Lyra demonstrates how to use a walking stick – Malamute style 😉
Well done Lyra on completing your second WPD-leg!
While my mum and I were out hiking Fredrik was busy clearing trees at home. Eleven pine trees had to be cleared as we are expanding the kennel area into the forest. Next week we are going to start limbing and preparing for the logs to be transported to the local sawmill. Plenty of work still remains before we can start building the pens but I think we can make it before winter, if we’re lucky 😉
Lyra completed her first WPD-leg last weekend, hiking 23.6 kilometres on a round trip on the Furuögrund Trail on Skellefteå’s northern coast together with her buddy Tuisku. It’s been a warm and sunny end to August here in northern Sweden and last Sunday there was hardly a cloud in the sky and we worried it may be too warm for a packing excursion. Luckily the trail followed the coastline closely and the dogs were able to cool down in the sea from time to time. We have been building up the weight gradually during our evening walks this summer and this was the first time that Lyra carried full weight (30% of her body weight) in her back pack. She did a great job and showed how much she enjoys being out on the trail and performing a job.
Sledog Dream Leaper, aka “Lyra”, at 2 years of age.
Crossing the Salmon Bridge over Byske River at the start of the hike.
For the most part the trail hugged the beautiful coastline between Byske and Furuögrund.
Being so close to the waves, Tuisku of course had to go for a swim…
Lyra relaxing on the beach, enjoying the cool breeze from the sea.
She took a brief nap during our lunch break…
...and Tuisku too.
Part of the trail was marked by wooden walkways.
We climbed up to the top of a lighthouse to admire the view.
When we returned home in the evening a thick fog had rolled in from the Bothnian Bay.
Well done Lyra on completing your first WPD-leg!
We’re hoping to explore more of our local trails this autumn, as one of the many great things about the AMCA Working Dog Program is that you can most often carry out legs towards your dogs’ working titles in your local area (depending a little on where you live) and do not need to spend hours (or days!) in the car to reach the location of a centralised test. This way, the AMCA program truly encourages people to work their dogs and that’s what a working program should be all about, right?
Our week in Lapland went by very quickly but we managed to squeeze in a little hike before it was time to return home. On a sunny morning we packed our bags to go on an 18 km (11.2 mi) dayhike to Lake Pahtajärvi, just outside the village of Hetta. Titan and Hilary carried our picnic in their bags while puppy Wilder carried an empty pack, just to get used to having something strapped to his back. The temperature was just above 10o C (50o F) and it was a perfect day to spend on the trail.
Wilder chose to work up front for large parts of the hike – that’s promising for the future.
The “work horses”, Titan and Hilary, crossing a bog on a wooden boardwalk.
Two happy Mals – Wilder, 7 months, and Titan, who will be 4 years old in October.
The goal of our hike – a lean-to with a view by Lake Pahtajärvi.
When we arrived at the laavu, Hilary cooled down in the lake. There were reindeer nearby so we had to keep her on a leash but that didn’t stop her from swimming back and forth in the cool water. This girl loves to swim – is this another sign of the beaver gene??
This 18 km hike could have counted as a WPD-leg for Hilary and Titan, who have yet to complete their packing titles, but since we did not have access to a scale at our cabin we were unable to weigh the contents of their bags prior to the hike. So the hike ended up being just a “leisure hike”, but I think the dogs were just as happy 😉
Wilder did well on his first longer hike; soon it’s time to start training him in harness!
The trails in Finland are well marked and often offer good facilities along the way. During the second half of August most of the mosquitoes are gone and one can enjoy the scenery in peace and quiet.The beautiful autumn colours don’t start to appear until September, which is also a great month for hiking in Lapland. The website www.Outdoors.fi has useful information about trails and nature areas in Finland, and is available in Finnish, Sámi, Swedish and English.
Last week we visited the Höga Kusten (The High Coast), about three hours south, for a fun day hike in beautiful surroundings. The High Coast is listed as a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site and is named after the area’s many tall cliff formations that were created by postglacial rebound. The Skuleskogens National Park lies just off the European Highway E4 and is one of the many attractions along the approx. 130 km long High Coast Trail. The area is suitable for both easy day hikes and longer treks and dogs are welcome too, as long as they are kept on a leash.
An impressive entrance to the higher sections of the trail.
The majestic Slåttdalsskrevan ravine is almost 200 metres long and only 7 metres wide.
From the Slåttdalsberget we enjoyed fantastic views of the Bothnian Sea and the archipelago.
The way down was rather steep and rocky – a good opportunity to train “slow down”, “go behind” and “stop!”. Both Hilary and Wilder did a god job following these commands.
In the forest we had to keep our eyes on our feet to avoid stumbling over protruding tree roots.
In many places the ground vegetation was already showing off beautiful autumn colours.
Our hiking companions – Hilary & Wilder. Can you tell that they are half-siblings?
Puppy Wilder had a fun day on the trail 🙂
This week he turns 7 months old – time flies!
If you’d like to find out more about the High Coast, visit www.hogakusten.com and www.skuleskogen.se It’s an accessible part of Sweden – situated about halfway between Stockholm and Haparanda, on Sweden’s beautiful east coast.
We went on a small hike today up to a cabin that sits on a hill in the forest. Titan and Hilary carried our picnic in their backpacks while Wilder came along just for fun. It’s too warm and humid right now for the dogs to carry out any real work but we nevertheless try to keep them exercised and happy with smaller activities each day. Wilder still gets most of his exercise from playing at home but at this age we also introduce “working walks”, i.e. shorter walks where the focus is on going forward, rather than on stopping to smell everywhere. Today we trained On by, Left/Right and Whoa, and Wilder did really well following these commands – with a little help from his friends 😉
Fredrik with Wilder, Hilary and Titan.
Preventing tangling when walking with three dogs on long lines is not an easy task…
Going up the hill with synchronised steps.
Wilder fell asleep on a soft tuft of moss. For a young puppy even a short hike is a big adventure 😉
Today was a beautiful autumn day, perfect for going on a small packing trip in the forest near our home. Hilary is still too young to carry weighs so we filled her bags with lighter stuff, just to make her accustomed to carrying a bulky pack in preparation for future packing trips. She did not seem to mind the pack at all, so that’s a good sign.
My trail companions: Thunder 8 years old and Hilary 13 months.
The forest is beautiful in autumn, no mosquitoes to worry about, just soft and quiet.
There’s still plenty of ripe blueberries so we stopped to grab some along the trail.
Hilary looks more and more like her handsome sire, Jake.
Especially in this picture…
We practised “sit” in many different places today, here on top of a rock 🙂
This summer we have been on many smaller hikes but it has mainly been along the trails by the coast. I miss the mountains…hopefully we will be able to squeeze in a longer packing trip before winter. *Fingers crossed it won’t snow until November*
Today we introduced our youngsters, Hilary and Lyra, to packing. Since they are still young it’s too early for them to carry any weight on their backs. Instead we filled their packs with lightweight stuff, such as clothes and blankets, to create the feel of a full load but with a minimum of weight. Both girls got used to having a bulky pack on their back in no time and showed great promise for the future. “Uncle Thunder” came along for moral support and we had a lovely day on the trail, enjoying the fresh breeze from the ocean and lunch on the sunny rocks.
Lyra and Hilary did great on their first packing excursion.
Hi everybody, our new website and blog are now up and running, hope you like it. We’ve had a break from the internet as we’ve been too busy carrying out work on our little farm this autumn. We’ve been clearing trees, putting up fences, constructing a new indoor run + outdoor playarea for Thunder and Leia, and more. Luckily winter is arriving late this year as we still have some work we want to complete before snow settles.
We had a beautiful summer in Nedre Bäck and also went on a WPDX-packing trip in Arctic Norway in August. You can see all pics from this northern adventure in our Gallery.