The Scoop on Skijoring

In the world of Winter sports, Skijoring isn’t a particularly new scene, but this cutting-edge trend is rather recent to Marquette and the rest of the Midwest. Skijoring’s name and fame stem from its Norwegian origin: kikjøring, from the root words ski ‘ski’ + kjøre ‘drive.’

Skijoring Facts & Fundamentals

It’s difficult to trace any single bloodline to Skijoring, but the birthplace of skijor racing is said to be Scandinavia. Since the sport has been altered and availed all over the world, and is well attended in areas like Alaska and Scandinavia, it is no surprise there’s a following in a city like Marquette, with all of our snow and cold.

Skijor competitions are commonly anywhere from 3 to 10 miles, but the length may vary depending on the events and routes available in a given area. Any breed that is 35 pounds or bigger is your best bet for a furry, four-legged skijoring companion. It’s essential that your dog has a calm, even temperament and a degree of high energy to thrive on the trails.

What to Wear

Like any other winter sport or activity, it’s crucial to dress for inclement weather. This means breathable base layers made up of thermal material, with additional layers as desired/required; make sure to have water and windproof protection for the outer layers, such as high-quality snow pants and jackets. Don’t forget a fitted cap, goggles, gloves, and a pair of wool socks to top it off.

Be sure to use proper equipment, and maintain proper etiquette while on the trails. On the Noquemanon Trail Network this means cross country skis (no metal edges), poles, boots, belt, shock-cord bungee line and harness. Do not use a choke collar while skijoring. These are rules and restrictions, they are not merely suggestions, they are mandatory.

A map of the nordic ski trails of the Noquemanon Trails network in Marquette Michigan.

Where to Kjøre

The Noquemanon Trail Network has designated doggy trails. These are identified on the trails by a blue dog symbol next to the trail name: Animoosh, Noque ( Grand Central Station to CR 510 following the upper Animoosh Dog By Pass, and Forestville Trailhead to Tourist Park only ) and Mukwa ( Great Plains Juntion – Harkin Junction ).

Requirements:
Buy an NTN trail pass: BUY HERE
Buy an NTN dog pass ($1 per day or $10 season)
Abide by dog rules and regulations:
Use Dog Stake out line or leash
NO DOGS IN THE CLUB HOUSE
Remove Feces
Use proper equipment (see post above)
Be courteous to other trail users: When passing from behind, call “Trail” and “On your right (or left).” If being passed, move to one side behind your dog, and pull yourself up to your dog
Please take extra caution on curves by slowing your dogs down
Be able to cross country ski competently
Do not ski with any more dogs than you can handle
Be able to stop your dogs within a reasonable distance
Keep your dog on current vaccinations and leave sick dogs at home
Be aware of your dogs behavior – AGGRESSIVE DOGS ARE NOT ALLOWED

Events

What: Animoosh Skijor 10K

When: January 29, 2017 9am start time

Where: NTN Forestville Trail head

How: Teams are sent out in 30 second interval with a cap of 50 teams.  Male and female divisions with one and two dog options. Two overall Male and Female winners.

For more info on Registration & Awards visit: Animoosh Skijor 10K

Where to Get Gear

Looking to rent or buy equipment here in Marquette County?
These shops should have you covered:

Mare Z Doats
1400 Division Street
Marquette, MI 49855
906.228-3367

Downwind Sports
514 N. Third Street
Marquette, MI 49855
906.226.7112

Sports Rack LTD
315 W. Washington Street
Marquette, MI 49855
800.775.8338