Before cars, snowmobiles, and even horses, dog sledding was one of the primary ways for getting around Canada during the winter months. It was an especially important mode of transportation for the people of the northern territories, who continue to respect huskie dogs deeply.
Today, dog sledding is mostly a recreational activity rather than necessary transportation, but it’s an amazing and fun way to experience Canada’s stunning landscape and part of its past.
Dog-sledding tours are available in many provinces and territories, and tours run from a couple of hours to a few days.
Many of the dogs are treated very well, but be sure to do your own research when selecting a tour to ensure that you are using one that treats their animals ethically and humanely.
Newfoundland and Labrador
There are a few dog-sledding opportunities in Newfoundland and Labrador, particularly in the Happy Valley-Goose Bay area. The industry is dying down though, so you won’t find as many chances here as you may have in the past.
Dog sledding is available throughout Alberta, particularly near popular tourist destinations such as Calgary, Lake Louise, Banff, and Jasper. The stunning Alberta scenery makes this an unforgettable dog-sledding locale.
Quebec is an excellent dog-sledding destination, and tours are available in most regions in the province. Because there are a lot of options, it’s an easy add-on to nearby popular spots, including Quebec City, Montreal, and Mont Tremblant.
While dog sledding is available throughout Ontario, you’ll find the majority of tour groups scattered in an area between Ottawa and Toronto, known as Explorer’s Edge (which encompasses Muskoka, Algonquin, Parry Sound, and more). People generally assume dog sledding is only available farther north, but this is a wonderful and easily accessible area to enjoy the sport.
There is something extra special about dog sledding in Canada’s Arctic. In the Yukon, you’ll find tours near the capital of Whitehorse as well as smaller towns, including Dawson City, Haines Junction, and Marsh Lake.
Nunavut offers tours for new dog sledders in many of its communities as well as longer expeditions for more experienced sledders. Dog sledding and the huskies are held in “very high regard” throughout the northern territories.
Home of the Canadian Championship Dog Derby, dog sledding is an important part of NWT’s culture, as it is for all of the territories. There are lots of great tour groups here located in communities around the area.