There are many reasons why I return to guiding dog sledding trips at Wintergreen Lodge. One of the main reasons is that the dogs love to pull.
If the dogs exuded some sort of complacency or indifference to pulling, or even if it seemed like pulling a sled burdened them in some sort of a negative way, I would not be part of the practice. Instead, the dogs seem happiest when tethered with a team, moving together through the wilderness, pulling with their well-suited, strong bodies. The pulling gives them purpose in life. The worst thing you could do to these dogs is not let them pull.
The Photo Workshop dogsled trip wrapped up today. One of the participants, Jamie Thingelstad, took this great picture. I like the photo because it captures the happy dogs smiling and pulling. In lead are Gracy, Bailey, and Barnum.