Frequently Asked Questions
How do you Mush in the summer when there is no snow?
Musher's have historically relied on improvised wheeled carts for summer training and work related activities. Today, it is referred to as dryland training, where essentially anything with wheels is pulled behind the power of these amazing athletes. At Sheep Creek, we utilize specially designed carts to execute summer cart-mushing and a modified sled with wheels at the Alaskan Sled Dog Demonstration and 40 Below Experience in Skagway.
How much time should I allocate for Summer Cart-Mushing in Juneau, what should I bring and how do I get there?
Our mountain home at Sheep Creek is located approximately 20-25 minutes from our central meeting point in downtown Juneau. The drive travels along the Gastineau Channel until you reach the base of an old mountain mining road, which you will travel up, past the old relics and ruins of Juneau's mining past, penetrating the temperate rainforest until you pierce through the canopy and on into the valley towards dog camp. Once in camp, you will be met by our dedicated staff and enthusiastic athletes for an hour of beauty, excitement and entertainment.
In all, you will wish to allocate 2 hours and 15 minutes to ensure that you do not overlap into any additional activities you may have planned in Juneau. You will wish to bring your camera and dress in layers with sturdy footwear and rain jacket. Transportation is provided and is the only way to reach dog camp; we meet in downtown Juneau with the exact location provided in your reservation confirmation and tour voucher.
How many dogs pull the cart and how many people will be riding; may I drive the cart?
At Sheep Creek, a team of 10 – 12 sled dogs pull a single cart, carrying up to eight guests and dedicated Musher-Handler Team, standing in the back of the cart, steering and operating the braking system. With the inclusion of wheels, dryland cart-mushing requires a diligent eye and constant braking, safely executed with the two-person Musher-Handler Team. With safety paramount, we only allow the trained Musher-Handler Team control of the cart, allowing for our guests to take in the beauty of Sheep Creek Valley and the agility and determination of the world class athletes powering the journey.
In Skagway, at the Alaskan Sled Dog Demonstration and 40 Below Experience, 6-8 dogs pull a traditional sled modified with wheels to demonstrate the vigor of racing. You will have the opportunity to stand on the race runners, inspect the sled and meet the dogs while observing the team in action.
Will there be puppies?
While we hope there will be, we do not guarantee puppies as they are the product of a natural process and one that we do not promote unless Musher's have them planned in their individual kennel plans.
Alright, what is this 40 Below Experience you keep mentioning?
Conceived of by 7-time Iditarod Finisher Matt Hayashida, the 40 Below Experience is a controlled environment maintained at 40 degrees below zero Fahrenheit. While developing the Alaskan Sled Dog Demonstration, the one thing he felt compelled to relate was the psychological toll of the cold. He felt that people would be able to relate to the sled and the dogs because they were tangible and in front of them. "People have experienced cold, they remember the chill on their face but most people have not experienced severe cold, the temperatures faced on the trail of the Iditarod and Yukon Quest, that's what I want people to feel, how do we do that?" The result is the 40 Below Experience, where you have the opportunity to see how long you can last at 40 below, or simply watch as others exit to the delight of warmer environs.
How do I book?
Directly through us by calling our Reservation Specialist at 907-983-2886....or if you are cruising, through your ship's excursion office which may have additional departure times.
Why do you not execute direct reservations for the Alaskan Sled Dog Demonstration and 40 Below Experience in Skagway?
In order to preserve the guest experience we have elected to facilitate reservations through the central office of the Alaska 360 to eliminate double bookings. You may reach them by phone at 907-983-3175 or by emailing them at email@example.com.
What time of year do you operate and when should I make my reservation?
Our operations coincide with competitive mushing's offseason, May-September, allowing for the powerful Iditarod and Yukon Quest sled dogs to join us for summer cart-mushing in Juneau and the Alaskan Sled Dog Demonstration and 40 Below Experience in Skagway. You will wish to make your reservations early to maximize your time while visiting and to avoid scheduling conflicts with additional activities you wish to pursue.
Are your operations ADA accessible?
We pride our operations on the personal effort and assistance put forth by our staff in ensuring the guest experience. All of the grounds at the Klondike Gold Fields and the Alaskan Sled Dog Demonstration and 40 Below Experience are ADA accessible. At Sheep Creek in Juneau for summer cart-mushing we are limited by the transportation to and from camp. Unfortunately, we are not aware ahead of time if we will have a wheelchair equipped vehicle for any particular departure. However, we do have 2 wheelchairs and 2 baby strollers on site. If you would like to reserve one please mention it to your booking agent at the time of reservations.