Archive for the ‘Lyra’ Categoryby Northernmost on March 15, 2013 in ACTIVITIES & WORK, Daily Life, Hilary, Lyra, Skijoring & Sledding, Thunder, Titan, Tuisku with No Comments
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!!
A lovely mild day today with huge snowflakes falling from the sky. A perfect day for skijoring! While soft trails are bad for sledding, this type of trail is ideal for sailing behind two eager Malamutes. Powder on the trail means it’s easy to brake (if you have to) and the soft snow means you’ll have a smoother ride. Skijoring is so much fun and the dogs love it!
Fredrik hits the trail in the heavy snowfall.
Lyra is like a younger version of Tuisku – there’s only one direction in her head and that’s forward.
Breaking trail in the forest is a perfect opportunity to train left and right commands.
Heads down and ears turned back to listen – good dogs!
We had a visit from Fredrik’s mum’s Labrador James who had a good romp in the snow with Hilary and Lyra. James is an extremely good natured dog and a great playmate who can keep up with (and wear out!) even the most exuberant Malamute teenager. If we have a litter in the future we’ll have to borrow him for puppy play sessions as this fun loving boy is a perfect introduction to other breeds.
Are you tired already??
Some pics from today’s outing with two 2-dog teams. What’s nice about Malamutes is that you don’t really need a big team, as two dogs, and sometimes just one, is enough to get some action on the trail. Today’s run was 18km (11 mi) with a rest break at midway point – a suitable distance for our youngsters Hilary and Lyra who are now 18 months of age. We try to vary their training as much as possible, working them individually and on teams of 2-4 dogs, and exploring new trails as often as we can to make the training more exciting for everyone. As soon as my back is stronger we’ll also be skijoring more, as skijoring is really what we enjoy most.
Tuisku and Hilary in front and Titan and Lyra behind.
Our Sledog Kids work really well together.
And they play well together too ;)
It’s clear that Lyra has inherited her sire’s lead dog ability, we’ll be trying her in lead position soon.
This girl always has full focus ahead.
The goal of today’s excursion was a lean-to by the coast where we stopped for tea and a sandwich.
Tuisku looking dreamy in the snow.
Hilary looks sleepy too – maybe it’s the fresh sea air that is making us all a little drowsy?
Two fuzzy butts getting ready to go home.
Love our winter weekends!
We had a big dump of snow this week and had to spend Friday evening and all day yesterday “rediscovering” our snowed over trails. Maintaining and grooming trails is time consuming, especially when you’d rather spend time with the dogs, but it’s nice to have decent trails to sled on so we try to keep them open the best we can. This morning our hard work was rewarded as we woke up to clear blue skies and brilliant sunshine. I took four of our dogs out on a fun ride while Fredrik went ice fishing. A perfect start to February!
Hilary, Thunder and Lyra wait while I get the sled and the lines ready.
And off we go!
Hilary and Tuisku in lead, Thunder and Lyra in wheel.
Few things are so beautiful as nature on the first sunny day after a storm.
We stopped for a break in a sunny spot to practise “settle down”. We try to include a brief rest stop on every run to make our youngsters, Lyra and Hilary, accustomed to the stakeout. This type of training will come handy when we go on overnight trips and need to secure the dogs at night. Thunder, good boy, already knows how to settle down.
Sledog Dream Leaper, aka Lyra, will be 18 months of age next week.
Flirting with the camera or just sun in her eyes?
Hilary, also 18 months in February, with some sugar on top.
Tuisku looked sleepy in the sun, I think he was still a little tired from Saturday, when he ran off leash alongside the snowmobile while Fredrik was grooming our trails.
Going home in the afternoon, the sun was still visible above the tree tops.
February means longer and brighter days and more time to spend on the trail.
Oh happy days!! :)
We went for a picnic today with Lyra, Hilary, Tuisku and Thunder. The sun was well hidden behind the clouds but it was still a nice day for an outing. We followed the forest trail to the sea bay and sledded along the shorelines of the islands in the archipelago. It’s a different experience sledding on the flat expanses of the ice. Not as exciting perhaps as a mountain trip but still an adventure. We saw a cliff island that we want to return to later in spring. Bet it’s a nice place to soak up some sun in March or April.
Heading out on the sea bay near our home.
Tuisku and Lyra worked together.
And Hilary & Thunder.
Tuisku had to work hard to keep up with eager Lyra who pulled like a locomotive today.
We stopped for a picnic where the bay opened up to the sea. This is where the trail ended and we didn’t want to be the first to break trail on deep water ice.
While Fredrik and the dogs ate most of our picnic I had fun taking photos.
At eight and seven years of age, Thunder and Tuisku have never been more beautiful.
Sweet like sugar :)
Hilary too did well today and enjoyed working with her older buddy Thunder.
Thunder has taken a fancy to Hilary and spent every available moment courting her – licking her ears and grooming her coat, and she’s not even in season ;)
We had a nice Saturday in the snow, now it’s time to take the rest of the family for a walk and then end the evening with a good movie. Happy weekend everyone!
Just like last year, winter arrived with a bang during the first week of December. We received one meter snow on December 2nd and it has been snowing every day since. When we moved south from Lapland in 2010, I worried there wouldn’t be enough snow here on the coast. I saw before me a nightmare of green and damp winters and muddy feet on the kitchen floor all year round. As we are now experiencing our third winter in Nedre Bäck it is clear that my worries were unfounded. In fact, we almost have more snow now than we did in Lapland. Here on the coast the autumn lasts well into November and then suddenly winter arrives almost overnight with a big dump of snow. Whereas in Lapland, winter starts in early October and snow builds up gradually during a longer period of time. Can’t say what I like better, but I’m glad that we found the right place for our new home, as winter and snow really get those Malamute tails wagging!
A couple of hours after we have removed all the snow from the porch it looks like this again!
One downside of living in an old house is that the windows can get rather draughty in winter. On the positive side – the windows are often covered with beautiful frostwork ;)
Our lovely Sledog kids, Titan & Lyra, enjoying a snow dance together. Winter weather definitely gets our Mals in play mode!
A couple of days ago our rowanberry trees were still laden with red berries but after a visit from a flock of Bohemian Waxwings they are now all gone. Wish I had caught these pretty birds with my camera. I love this shot by Finnish photographer Juha Soininen.
Gem takes a break in her favourite corner of the couch. She is a strong candidate for the position as our *next permanent house dog*. After our girl Lily passed away in 2009 we decided not to have a house dog, but Gem enjoys indoor life so much, and has such nice house manners, that maybe we’ll make an exception. After all, it’s quite nice to snuggle up with a warm dog on a cold winter night.
Time flies during this beautiful part of winter – only two weeks till Christmas!!
Ice is starting to form along the shores of our lake and we are hoping for a long period of cold weather and litte wind during November, so that the ice can grow thick and strong before the snow begins to fall. If we have a good winter with strong ice, we will be able to sled from home, across small lakes and rivers, to the extensive trails of the Bothnian Bay. Can’t wait for the season to begin!
During this dark time of the year, nothing beats cuddling up with a good book in front of the open fire on a Friday night. Both Fredrik and I love to read and have a growing collection of books related to Malamutes, dog sledding and outdoor adventure in general. We often buy books online, both new and used books from Amazon and eBay. I’m currently working on a “Good Reads-page” here on our website, which will include our reviews of some of the titles. Not every book that we have is worth buying, but some are real gems for “Malanuts”.
Have a happy weekend everyone!
After nearly a month of constant rain we woke up this morning to blue skies and a garden covered in glimmering frost. The thermometer showed minus three degrees Celsius – perfect weather for running dogs! We decided to hook up the girls and take them for a spin with two of our experienced boys, Tuisku and Thunder, to see what they remembered from last spring. Hilary and Lyra haven’t worked in harness since April, as we have wanted to give them time to grow and develop during summer, and just be “pups” for a while. They are now 14 months of age and seem ready to start a new working season. As soon as we put their harnesses on this morning they leaped into the air with excitement!
We placed Hilary and Tuisku in lead and Thunder and Lyra in wheel. Next time it will be Lyra’s turn to work up front. We always try our young dogs in different positions before we see which position they excel in naturally. Just as important as drive, is the ability to listen and learn.
Even though the girls have had a long break from work in harness, they knew exactly what to do and continue to impress us with their focus and drive.
Both girls stepped up today!
The frost from the morning lasted all day – now it won’t be long before winter is here
After doing his best to ignore Lyra during her first year Tuisku has recently decided that Lyra is actually rather fun to play with. And it doesn’t matter that there are six years between them as Tuisku is still very much a puppy in mind. I had to take some photos of them today as they looked so cute together – both newly washed and in their skimpy summer coats. Without his crowning glory, Tuisku looks like a teenager again
Lyra 13 months and Tuisku 7 years.
A little more than a year ago, Lyra was just a baby pup.
Now they can play on more equal terms.
Here are some pics from last Sunday’s agility session. Two of our girls are in season right now so we do our best to distract the boys with fun activities to make them focus on something else than just “GIRLS” for a while
Leia goes absolutely crazy when we bring out the agilty obstacles, she loves it!
Tuisku trotting out from the closed chute.
Lyra waits while Fredrik adjusts the height. This pretty pup turned 1 year old last week – time flies!