Archive for the ‘Hilary’ Categoryby Northernmost on July 29, 2013 in Hiking & Packing, Hilary, Nature, Wilder with No Comments
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.
Puppy Wilder (6 months) had some fun with Titan (4 years old) today. Big sister Hilary (2 years old) was there to make sure Wilder behaved himself around an older dog. Hilary is a sweet girl with a rich vocabulary that enables her to get a friendly response from most dogs that she meets. At home she can be a bit of a boss dog too – making sure everyone are on their best behaviour
The weeks are flying by right now and we’re busy from sunrise to sunset. I haven’t been able to keep up with my email lately due to a busy schedule at work, but I promise to get back to each and everyone as soon as my summer holiday starts. Below are some pics from this weekend’s agility fun with the gang. All dogs took part except for Thunder, who spent the day being pampered at Grandma’s. Our best jumpers are definitely Leia and Hilary who have great technique and fly effortlessly through the obstacles. But everyone did their best and had FUN! And that’s all that matters
Sunday is funday here in Nedre Bäck and yesterday was a perfect day to train agility in the garden. After a cloudy morning the sun came out in the afternoon and for the first time in weeks there wasn’t a single mosquito in sight! Yay!! We have a handful of very basic agility obstacles that we bring out just for fun in the weekends. Our goal is not to become competitive but to keep our Malamutes active and happy during the summer months. Like most dogs, our Mals love agility!
Who is there??
Wilder started off by watching the others, then he tried some of the obstacles himself.
The closed chute was a bit strange at first…
Agility is a great way to build a dog’s attention and contact. We only train each dog for short sessions at a time, making sure it never becomes boring or too hard. This is especially important when training puppies. We strive to always end the training on a high note!
And the obstacles are of course adjusted to suit puppies ;-)
Hilary was third out and was whining a little in her dog pen when she had to wait for her turn. Hilary is normally a very quiet dog but she loves agility so much that waiting around wasn’t easy.
We finally let her out so that she could show Wilder how to jump through the ring…
…and after we had adjusted the height a little, Wilder completed the jump too :)
Tuisku also did some agility but he still has a lot of coat so yesterday was a bit too warm for him. Hopefully, after his next bath what’s left of his undercoat will be gone.
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 ;-)
Hilary and Wilder had a playdate with Fredrik’s mother’s 2-year-old Labrador Retriever James yesterday. James is a great dog, playful and uncomplicated (like most Labs are) and ready to invite other friendly dogs into play straight away. Since James and Hilary already know each other we figured it would be a good idea to introduce Wilder too. Wilder has had a great start in life at Mountain Home and we aim to continue building on that foundation by making sure he has as many positive experiences as possible, with dogs of different breeds, new people, new places etc. We’re still waiting for a puppy class to become available anywhere within 1h of where we live, but for some reason there are very few classes available during summer. If nothing comes up soon, maybe we should organize a puppy class ourselves?
A brief break from playing to recieve treats from Fredrik’s mum – happy pups
It has now been a week since Wilder arrived in Sweden and what a great week it has been! Wilder has settled into his new home in no time and much is thanks to Hilary, who has been a great “play nanny” to Wilder, keeping him busy and loved all week. Apart from a visit to the beach with Tuisku, a forest walk with Titan, and a visit to town today, Wilder has spent his first week in Sweden mostly in our home and garden, getting used to our daily routines. I’m glad I bought a big supply of toys before he arrived, as he and Hilary have had a blast playing with these KONG and rope toys all week
The Five Knot Rope Toy is great for sharing.The only downside is that it quickly gets grubby when left out in the garden. We pop ours in the washing machine and let them air dry. And if they get too grubby we replace them with new ones, as these toys are luckily among the more affordable.
Quality rope toys are great for itchy gums.Wilder lost two of his baby teeth today
This was the biggest rope toy we could find – it’s very popular with our Mals but not 100% durable. After each play session there are pieces of blue yarn left in the grass.
The KONG Stuff-A-Ball is Hilary’s favourite, she picks it up and makes Wilder chase her around. Since this toy has two rope ends it is good for two dogs sharing.The ridges are designed to clean the dog’s teeth and the toy can be stuffed with yummy snacks to make it even more appealing.
The KONG Extreme Goodie Bone made from ultra-tough black rubber is a big favourite with most of our dogs but so far Wilder hasn’t shown any interest in this toy. Right now he doesn’t like the smell of it but I don’t think it will take long before he realises that this toy is FUN
Wilder hasn’t shown any interest in the KONG Dental yet either. Maybe this toy
is still a bit too big for him?
The KONG Tails is popular with our Mals but if a heavy chewer is left unsupervised with this toy for too long, the blue “tails” will start to break off. Instead of being available to the dogs on a daily basis, the KONG Tails is better used as a treat during training, or as a toy to bring along to puppy class.
Hilary is a great teacher, she gets most pleasure out of sharing her toys with her friends.
It’s been a good first week :)
Wilder has arrived and brought summer with him from America! We met our new boy at the airport in Stockholm on Friday, where he arrived safe and sound after a “quick” 11h flight from Seattle via Iceland. From Stockholm we travelled home by car along Sweden’s beautiful northern coast. Our trip coincided with the warmest weather we have had so far this summer so we had to make plenty of breaks to cool down and get some fresh air along the way. We had brought Hilary along with us and, as expected, she and Wilder hit it off right away. They played pretty much non-stop during our many rest stops and at the hotel room in Sundsvall on Friday night. During the last part of our journey they were both pretty tired from all the excitement. Below are some photos from Wilder’s first two days in Sweden. I will write more about our new member of the family next week
Mtn Home’s NM A Touch Of The Wild, aka Wilder, on his first day in Sweden.
Come play with me!
Wrestling games to get to know each another.
We stopped by a pretty lake where Hilary enjoyed her first swim of the season.
Wilder was happy just getting his feet and belly wet in the cool water.
Two new buddies – Hilary and Wilder :)
After two weeks of warm weather our winter is definitely over. We still have plenty of snow but it doesn’t hold for us to ski or sled on, and the dogs punch through easily, so we have had to accept that the sledding season is over for this time.
Today we took Hilary and Thunder on a walk in Skellefteå which is our nearest major town, situated about 30 minutes from our home. It’s a great place for walking the dogs and socializing them in a busier environment than the quiet country road at home. We went for a two-hour walk along the Skellefte River and watched the last remnants of winter pass us by.
When we go on our town walks we always bring our clickers as it’s a great opportunity to train our dogs to walk on a loose leash, pass other dogs, joggers, bikes etc., and stay focused on us, rather than on everything else. For our “country bumpkin Mals”, staying focused can sometimes be a challenge, but Hilary and Thunder did well today.
During our walk we passed Skellefteå’s beautiful country church, maybe Fredrik and I will get married there next year? Or maybe we’ll get married on top of a mountain, you never know
I always feel a little blue when the winter ends, as I can never get enough of sledding and skijoring, but luckily the sadness only lasts for a day or two. Now we will take care of some spring chores at home before kicking off some off-snow activities. There are so many fun things to do in summer – hiking and packing, carting, agility, tracking and more. I hope the last bit of snow will be gone soon!
Have a happy weekend everyone :-)
We’ve been away on a wilderness adventure with Lyra, Hilary, Tuisku and Thunder, travelling on the ice of the frozen lakes of Tjaktajaure and Laitaure and making daytrips into the magnificent Sarek National Park in Swedish Lapland. Fantastic weather, amazing views and happy, hardworking dogs – what more could you ask for? The only hiccup on this trip were our sleeping bags that didn’t perform when the temperature dropped down to around -20ºC (-4ºF) at night. But with a warm dog to snuggle up to it wasn’t a huge problem. We learn something from every trip; about ourselves and the gear, and what needs to be improved before we set out on our next adventure. We can’t complain about the dogs though, they went like clockwork from day one, displaying the drive and stamina which we have come to expect from them, even though they always manage to amaze us just a little more on each trip. Without our Alaskan Malamutes, we’d sure miss out on some great adventures in life!
We had fantastic weather during most of our trip…
…but we started the journey in an almost complete whiteout which forced us to rely on the map and compass for navigation as we couldn’t see much of the surrounding landscape, just snow and mist and a myriad of trails to choose from.
The next morning, and during the rest of our trip, we had brilliant sunshine and temperatures around -12ºC (10ºF) – ideal conditions for the dogs who could work at a good pace without getting too warm.
Lyra and Tuisku with the Sarek National Park in the backdrop.
We set up camp in the woods near the mountain of Tjahkkelij where we found a spring with crystal clear water for us and the dogs. Having access to water is a luxury on winter camping trips as melting snow for drinking and cooking can be a time-consuming process.
Our dogs took turns sleeping in the tent and did a good job keeping us warm at night.
After setting up camp we were able to leave our gear behind and go on fun day trips to explore the landscape. In this photo Fredrik is on his way to Nammásj – a holy mountain in the Sámi tradition.
Hilary and Thunder, with Skierffe’s peak in the background.
We could have stayed on the trail for many more days, continuing the trip further into the Rapa Valley, but unfortunately work and other duties called us back to civilization.
While most people probably prefer to have their holiday during the summer, our ideal would be to have the whole month of April off, to be able to go on longer journeys into the wild. Maybe next year?
To view more photos from our trip, visit our Aktse April 2013 Gallery.
Some update pics of Mtn Home’s Northernmost Hiking Hilary at 19 months of age. We got a nice “sit” and an OK “down” but didn’t manage to get any good stacked photos. We’ll try again later this month, before she sheds her beautiful winter coat.
In the end we got a nice photo of Hilary standing up too…
It’s been a beautiful week with calm weather and clear blue skies. We’ve been making the most of every day as we’ll soon need to take a brief break from sledding due to our girls coming into season. This week we’ve also been busy thinking hard about what to name our puppy who will be joining us later this spring. After writing down a long list of options, we ended up choosing the name that came first to us. But more about our puppy news later, have a great weekend everyone
Fredrik has travelled many miles on the Skidoo this winter, working hard to keep our trail open in between snowfalls. Right now the trail is in great condition so fingers crossed we’ll have no more snow this winter! I think what we have right now is PLENTY!!