Dog Sledding in Swedish Lapland

Dog Sledding in Swedish Lapland

Swedish Lapland – a region synonymous with snow and endless wilderness – provides the perfect opportunity for a sled dog tour with a gorgeous pack of huskies leading the way. Gliding over wide plains, frozen lakes and forest trails is an unparalleled winter holiday experience, where the only sounds you’ll hear are the crunching of the snow and the panting of the excited huskies. Escape to a region far removed from the stresses of daily life on a climate-friendly adventure, exploring remote corners of nature and leaving behind nothing but pawprints. You can often pet and feed the friendly huskies yourself, which is always a bonus for any dog lover. Let’s find out more about dog sledding in Swedish Lapland.

  1. What is Dog Sledding?
  2. What Should I Expect When Dog Sledding in Swedish Lapland?
  3. Can I Drive my Own Sled?
  4. What Should I Wear When Dog Sledding?
  5. Where are the Best Places to go Dog Sledding in Swedish Lapland?


What is Dog Sledding? 

Simply put, dog sledding involves a sled being pulled by a group of dogs, usually over ice or through snow. It’s a thrilling outdoor adventure with strong historical roots. For centuries, working dogs that help transport people and cargo have been a crucial means of travel for communities in the Arctic. Teams consist of between two to 18 dogs, most being Alaskan or Siberian huskies. The activity is also known as ‘mushing’ – derived from the French word ‘marcher’, which means to move forward. Dogsleds are run by a musher, a person who stands behind the sled and guides the dogs with techniques and commands.


What Should I Expect When Dog Sledding in Swedish Lapland?

From half-day to week-long expeditions, travellers from all over the world flock to Swedish Lapland for dog sledding tours. The season starts in late October and goes through to early May, while the ground is blanketed in snow. In January and February, the temperature often drops below -30°C, so try to choose a date when you can comfortably enjoy the experience, typically around March and April. The enthusiastic huskies are bred for taking tours through the winter wonderland, and you can expect them to cover between ten and 25 miles a day. That means you’ll get to see lots of beautiful nature while you ride, from snowy valleys to frozen peaks. If you’re lucky, you could spot reindeer, wolverine and Arctic hares on your trip and, if you are extraordinarily lucky, the rarely seen Arctic fox. Those here in winter will also be in with a chance of catching the sky’s biggest show – the Northern Lights.


Can I Drive my Own Sled?

Most husky rides involve teamwork, and you’ll take it in turns to lead. Mushers will learn the techniques to steer and guide the dogs, so you’ll get the perfect combination of physical activity and relaxed immersion in nature. Solo travellers, couples, families and friends can choose from a variety of rides with taster tours offering an ideal introduction to sledding. If you’re in good shape, you can drive your own sled, but bear in mind, hours of steering will be taxing. Those who prefer to take a back seat can book sit-down sled rides with a professional musher.


What Should I Wear When Dog Sledding?

It’s best to wear warm clothing when dog sledding. Most companies will provide you with waterproof overalls, snow boots, hats and gloves but we’d advise checking beforehand what’s included. We suggest wearing thermal underwear, comfortable clothing and a scarf.


Where are the Best Places to go Dog Sledding in Swedish Lapland?

Although dog sledding is by no means limited to Swedish Lapland, some of the best-known trails can be found here. The most famous is Kungsleden – the King’s Trail – which stretches over 270 miles from Abisko to Hemavan. Some of our other top pick places for dog sledding includes the frosty village of Jukkasjärvi, where there’s more dogs than people; the town of Kiruna, in the far north, where you can glide past mature pine forests, frozen lakes and ancient swamps; and Abisko National Park, one of the most gloriously scenic parts of Sweden, up in the far north-west of the country. For longer expeditions, consider heading to remote Sarek National Park, west of Jokkmokk, where it’s possible to join epic week-long dog sledding trips through the pristine wilderness.