There’s nothing more enchanting then experiencing winter in one of the most magical cities in the world, Quebec City. The capital brims with some of the best outdoors activities to indulge in; but one to beat them all and that will undoubtedly put stars in the eyes of the smallest kids to the oldest folks, is dog sledding. You cannot come to Quebec City in the winter time without trying it.
On a very snowy Thursday afternoon, we booked an hour long session of dog sledding with Les Secrets Nordiques, 20 minutes away from downtown Quebec City. Upon arrival, we were greeted by the ever so welcoming staff of guides, welcome agent and Bruno, the owner himself, who also happens to be a guide. We were then separated in groups of French and English speakers. The activity started with a detailed explanation of how to handle the sleds. Meanwhile, we could see from afar the dogs harnessed, sitting in the snow in silence, waiting for the mushers’ signal to go. One of the most magical memories of this experience (and there were many), was that as the dogs saw us approach to embark on the sleds, they started to get excited and happily howled together. I couldn’t contain myself. I was above and beyond excited. They were so beautiful. We met our lead dogs: Anoki, the powerful one and Laska, the smart one.
Anoki, on the right and Laska, on the left
We headed to the trails in the pines forest with our amazing guide, Bruno, who was always here to reassure us and show us what to do and what not if needed. We exchanged roles as Musher and “sled passenger” several times along the way and enthusiastically encouraged our lead dogs by screaming: “Good job, Anoki!”; “Good girl, Laska!”, as advised by our guide.
When the trail ended, we went to the kennel to pet the dogs, take pictures with them (needless to say, I didn’t want to leave the place) and listened as Bruno explained to us how they raise the dogs, how they take care of them , how they feed them, how the hierarchy works between the dogs; he had to stop in the middle of his speech, as the 65 dogs of the kennel started howling together. Bruno explained to us that it was a way for the dogs to congratulate each other after having successfully completing the trails. Yet another utterly magical moment that made me want to stay there forever.
Here is Laska again
And as all good things have to come to an end, we were headed back to the main building, where coffees, hot chocolates and cakes awaited us. We thanked Bruno for the unforgettable experience and left with our hearts full and stars in our eyes.
If you are in Quebec City before March 10, I can’t recommend enough that you try dog sledding with Les Secrets Nordiques. They’re a team of passionate mushers who deeply love and care for the dogs. They’re extremely professional and know what they’re doing. They’re also family and kids friendly. We truly adored the experience.
Note the address: 100 rue Beau-mont, Beaupré, Québec (Canada) G0A 1E0