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“Adventure of a lifetime”

Wintergreen Dogsled Day Trips
Ranked #5 of 10 Tours in Ely
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Wintergreen Dogsled Day Trips Wintergreen dogsled day trips are "hands-on" experiences on which you'll be driving your own dogsled powered by a team of our friendly, handsome Canadian Inuit dogs. Our guides will accompany you on skis to help out as needed, point out signs of wildlife and sights of scenic interest and share northwoods lore. No experience is needed. Persons ages 5-75 have enjoyed these trips. Half-day morning (9-1) and afternoon (1-5) options are available along with full day trips (9-5) that include lunch. Full day trips also include the option of exploring more adventurous trail options in the afternoon if you choose. Because Wintergreen's dogteams and guides are fully booked most Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays December to March with our overnight vacation packages, our Wintergreen day trips options are generally limited to Sundays and Mondays, although for groups of 4 or more we can sometimes arrange Tuesday or Wednesday trips. These trips all begin at Wintergreen Dogsled Lodge on White Iron Lake near Ely, MN. Upon your arrival, our guides will make sure your clothing & boots are adequate (rental gear available in all sizes), provide you with trail beverages & snacks upon request and take you through our "Dogsledding 101" orientation. Then you'll head to the kennel to meet the dogs. The big moment arrives as your guide helps you launch your sled. Off you go, driving your own dogteam on wilderness trails. Along the way, your guide (on skis) will point out wildlife signs and sites of scenic interest for photos, and provide rest stops & snack breaks upon request. On full day trips, the guides will provide a trailside campfire lunch or an indoor lunch break at the lodge. Our trail system includes a variety of scenic options: hilly woodland terrain, sheltered bogs, frozen lakes & ponds and trails that are both easy and challenging. Feel free to let your guide know your preferences. When you arrive back at the kennel, you're welcome upon request to help feed and water your dogs and to visit the lodge for a hot beverage before departing. You'll be in good hands: National Geographic Adventure ranks Wintergreen as "Best in the Business" and it's directed by Paul Schurke, recipient of the "Explorers Award", "Adventurer of the Year Award," and "Environmental Hero" award. Our dozen guides are the best in the business as well and include the "National Geographic Adventurers of the Year." You'll also enjoy our incredible location: the stunning lakeland forest on the US-Canada border that National Geographic ranks among the world's "Top 50 Must See" places. Northwoods splendor at its finest! Wintergreen dogsled day trips are very popular, but most visitors to our winter vacation wonderland choose our extended 3- or 4-night Wintergreen Dogsled Vacations at Wintergreen Dogsled Lodge.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Piedmont of NC
Level Contributor
64 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Adventure of a lifetime”
Reviewed December 11, 2012

I enjoyed this adventure so much, I have been 4 times. I cannot say enough wonderful things about Wintergreen. Paul Schurke has a fantastic dogsledding lodge. The accommadations, the guides, the food, and the dogs cannot be topped anywhere. I would go every year if I lived closer.

Visited January 2012
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3 Thank Elygirl777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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10 reviews from our community

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English first
Texas
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Wintergreen is the best!”
Reviewed October 1, 2012

Wintergreen Dogsled Lodge is the real thing. Their Canadian Inuit dogs, born with the innate desire and love of pulling sleds, are super friendly and fun. With Wintergreen you are the musher. Their expert guides teach you how to handle the dogs and sled, how to stay warm in the snow, and most importantly how to enjoy and appreciate the wonders and beauty of the North Woods. We have been on several Wintergreen trips, both lodge trips and camping. Yes, winter camping! Who knew camping in the snow could be so much fun!

Visited March 2012
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2 Thank AdvntureMe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, MN
Level Contributor
62 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“The DogSled trips are an unforgettable experience - for both you and your kids”
Reviewed July 8, 2012

I was lucky enough to take 2 different dogsledding trips with Wintergreen, thru a unique partnership they sometimes offer with "New Moon" magazine. 5 pairs of girls and a parent would stay in the lodge for 4 nights, and go out dogsledding every day. I went first with my oldest daughter, and then the next winter with my younger daughter. I had always wanted to try dogsledding, since I'd grown up with a Husky, but this experience surpassed my every expectation.

To begin with, Wintergreen's dogs are all Inuit dogs, bred to love dogsledding, as well as coming from a long line of dogs who are very friendly to people. I had worried ahead of time that it was possible that people enjoyed dogsledding a whole lot more than the dogs did, but these dogs truly loved running on the trails. In fact,they would howl in frustraton to get going, as you'd get them setup with the sled. And if you happen to be a doglover, you're going to love these walking pillows of fur!

Another aspect unique to Wintergreen is that the head of the dogsledding side of the business is Paul Schurke; who is renown in the dogsledding world for a number of reasons - he was part of the group which successfully went to the North Pole without resupplying (along with Will Steger and Ann Bancroft); and has continued over the years to take annual trips to either one of the Poles, or Greenland. So at night it's great entertainment to listen to Paul's stories of all of his amazing adventures.

Lastly, I have to say that the setting in Ely is very special. The Boundary Waters are such a beautiful area to sled in, and while the town is very small it has a lot of character. In fact, this was one of Charles Kuralt's 12 favorite spots in the U.S.. Along with the charming knitting shop (with the best buttons!), and the Wintergreen clothing shop (run by Paul's wife Susan) which has the best stuff to keep you warm (while also adding a ribbon of Scandanavian flair), the town has what I believe is the only International Wolf Center in North America, and it is a must see.

I hope this post convinces you to try dog sledding, whether it's for a day or four, because it was such an amazing life experience for my daughters and I. And with all the support Wintergreen gives you (from clothing you to feeding you very well!) it's also a suprisingly civilized experience!

Visited March 2012
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1 Thank mckmpls
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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