-75,- EURO / -700,- NOK DISCOUNT!
ACTIVE WINTER HOLIDAY
This week is filled with typical Scandinavian winter activities in the Norwegian wilderness. Experience the life style of an husky musher, join a large carnivore expert to track wolf, lynx and wolverine deep into their natural habitat, explore the in meters snow covered forests and mountains on snowshoes, catch your own meal on one of the many frozen lakes and get familiar with the outdoor skills of the locals.
When: Tour dates available every week from start January until the start of April.
Where: Osen (Åmot, Hedmark, Norway). View map
Length: 8 days
Number of participants: 3-6 (please contact us for other group sizes)
Price: 15.500,- NOK (+/- 1.700,- Euro) per person
Accommodation (twin bedroom basis)
Transport in Norway (You will be picked up at Oslo Gardermoen)
Food: Food and drinks
Snow shoe / ski rental
Guiding by a large carnivore expert
Guiding by a local husky musher
An experience of a life time
Flight to Oslo Gardermoen.
Travel insurance: All participants are responsible for their own travel insurance.
Hedmark county covers the most eastern part of Norway and is the most forested area of Norway. The village Osen, where the husky farm "Huskylife" lays, is situated on the north side of a large lake (Osensjøen). The lake is surrounded by endless forests which cover the beautiful hilly landscape. In this part of Norway there is a lot of snowfall during winter, making it ideal for dog sledding. Once the snow starts falling, the scenery looks like it was directly taken from a fairytale. The village lays only just over 2 hours driving from Oslo Gardermoen international airport, making it an easy destination for foreign visitors. However, the secluded location of the village makes it a still undiscovered pearl.
Additionally to the endless forests, impressive landscapes and perfect conditions for dog sledding, Hedmark is also know for the wildlife. Moose, roe deer, red deer, black grouse and capercaillie thrive here. It is also the only area in Norway where all the four large carnivores (wolf, lynx, wolverine and brown bear) live. Although the chance of encountering one of these animals is quite small, it is very likely to come across their tracks during the dog sledding trips.
Michael Dötteren (large carnivore expert) and Nichlas Stensrud (dog musher). click here to learn more about the guides
How does the tour look like:
The tour consists out of two parts. The first 4 days are guided by Michael and the last 4 days by Nichlas. During the first part of the tour you will track wolf, lynx and wolverine. To not lose precious time while you are here, the guide will search for tracks of the large carnivores in the days prior your arrival. Searching for their tracks can take a lot of time, since the home-ranges of the large carnivores are very large. Reaching well up to 1000 square kilometers. Even though the accommodation is situated in the home range of one of the wolf packs, expect that we sometimes have to drive long distances to encounter fresh tracks. The day planning will roughly look like this: After having breakfast and preparing our lunch packages, we leave the accommodation at around 9:00 o clock. We spent up five to six hours tracking by foot, with a break in the middle. We will return to our accommodation at around 16:00 o clock, relax, shower and visit the restaurant for a nice warm meal.
For the second half of the tour, you will experience the lifestyle of the husky musher. The day planning will roughly look like this: After having breakfast and preparing lunch packages, you will be picked up at the accommodation at about 09:30 am. From then, there will be a program with dog sledging, ice fishing and learning outdoor skills, until around 17:00. You will be brought back to the accommodation, where you can freshen yourself up, before going to the restaurant at 19:00. Find below the daily program.
You will fly on Oslo Gardermoen airport. Here the guide will meet you and drive you to the accommodation in Osen. The drive takes about 2 1/4 hours. Depending on the time of arrival, you will either be brought to the restaurant for dinner or already look for the first carnivore tracks in the area. After the dinner you can go to your accommodation and get some rest.
Day 2 and 3.
Tracking days as described above. Prime targets are the wolf, lynx and wolverine. Tracking will be done on snow shoes.
Today the guide will take you into an area out of the forest range, to introduce you to a different ecosystem. This is the high mountain plateau Trysilfjellet. We will walk from the tree line up to the high mountains, with a stunning view of this marvelous ecosystem. Here we can expect to find tracks of the mountain hare, willow grouse, black grouse, capercaillie, red fox but also the wolverine might cross our path. We will follow a trail along a ski track, prepared for cross country skiers. Additionally to the beautiful nature, you will get a taste of the Norwegian culture and see what the locals do in their spare time.
At 09:30 you will be picked up and be brought to the farm of the dog musher where a new adventure starts. Together with the musher you prepare the dog sledges, put the pulling harnesses on the dogs and put them in front of the sledges. The musher will explain the basics in dog mushing and will take you on an "easy" prepared route into the forests. The route will take you higher up in the hills, where you will make a stop after 10 kilometers. Here you will have lunch and a fire to warm yourself up a bit. From this point you have the possibility to make a short snowshoe trip to the highest peak of the hill. From the top you have an amazing view of the whole area and get a good impression of how wild this area still is. After the break, you will get back on your dog sledges and take a different route down back to the farm. The track will take you straight through the pine forest and over frozen bogs. You will return at the farm at around 16:00, just before dark. You will help the musher putting the dogs back to their spots and feed them.
At 09:30 you will be picked up by the guide. The dogs will rest and recharge before the long trip of day 4. Today the guide will introduce you into the Norwegian outdoor life style. You will visit one of the many frozen lakes and fish for your own dinner. Here the guide will show you how to make a fire during winter, only using the things you find in the forest. On the fire, lunch will be prepared. From the lake you can explore the surrounding wilderness on snowshoes, look for tracks of the wildlife and join the guide to check a camera trap at a bait for eagles, fox, wolverine and other predators. You will return at the farm at around 16:00, just before dark. You can freshen yourself in the accommodation. Depending on if you have caught enough fish, you will either be served dinner in the accommodation or in the restaurant at 18:00.
At 09:30 you will be picked up and be brought to the farm of the dog musher. Together with the musher you will prepare the dog sledges, put the pulling harnesses on the dogs and put them in front of the sledges. Today you will make a long tour with the dogs, crossing through the white wilderness, which you overlooked on day 5. Expect some of the most amazing winter landscapes and good chances to see tracks of the wildlife. Keep your eyes open, you might spot a moose standing between the trees or some grouse sitting in the tree tops. The tour will take about 6 hours, depending on the snow conditions. Halfway the trip you will have a lunch break, where you can warm yourself at a fire. You will return at the farm at around 16:30, just before dark.
Sadly this is already the last day of the tour. Depending on the time of your flight back, you can still make an early morning snowshoe walk in the forest surrounding the accommodation. Then it is time to pack the bags and have a last drive through this stunning area. You will be driven back to Gardermoen airport where the tour comes to an end.
What can you expect to see:
The main goal of the first part of the tour, is to follow tracks of the wolf, lynx and wolverine. While following the tracks you will be able to observe behavior patterns (territory marking, playing, hunting, sleeping and such) and it is possible to come across carcasses of animals killed by the predators. During the whole tour you will also come across tracks of other animals such as moose, red deer, roe deer, red fox, pine marten, beaver, otter and grouse species. The density of moose is very high in this area and the guide will do his best to show you this impressive animal in real life. During day time it is possible to spot black grouse and capercaillie in the trees and with some luck also the impressive golden eagle. Additionally to all the wildlife, you will see some of the most amazing winter landscapes while walking through the pure wilderness of Norway. As little bonus for the trip, in March the northern light activity can be high and been seen in Hedmark.
The winters are quite harsh in this part of Norway, with temperatures dropping until -40 degrees Celsius in some extreme cases in December and January. The temperature in January and February can be expected to be between -10 and -25 on day time. In March the winter loosens it’s hard grip and the temperature rises again and can be expected to be between -5 and -15 degrees on day time. If the sun does its best, the temperature can rise a few degrees above 0 in the second half of March. At night the temperature will be about 5 to 10 degrees colder than during the day. The chance for snowfall is present during the whole winter period, but degrees from the end of February.
Physical condition of the participants:
You don't need to be super fit to be able to make this trip, but you need to be able to walk about 5 hours per day on snowshoes. There is no need to hurry and the terrain won't be steep during most of the tracking. Participants have to carry their own small backpack with some extra clothing, lunch and something to drink. We do advise you to prepare your body for the tour, by walking several kilometers per day prior the tour. Also don't under estimate dog sledding. It is not as simple as just standing on a sledge. You are constantly balancing, steering and you will need to push the sledge occasionally. This will consume your energy throughout the day.
Food and drinks:
Breakfast: The breakfast will be eaten in the accommodation. During the tour we will visit a supermarket several times to buy breakfast and lunch. Snacks and alcoholic beverages are not included in the price. You can buy these on your own expenses when we visit the supermarket.
Lunch: In the morning you have to make your own lunch package to bring out in the field.
Dinner: Every evening a hot meal is served in the local restaurant.
(If there are things you cannot eat, please let us know prior the tour.)
You will be staying in a large house, close to the lake called Osensjøen, in the small village Osen. The house has been completely renovated in 2014 and has a good standard. In the accommodation we have three twin-bedrooms which we have to share. Further there is a large living room, kitchen, toilet and bathroom. There is a supermarket at 300 meter from the accommodation and the restaurant, where you will be dining, lays only 50 meters from your door. The farm of the husky musher is located within 7 minutes driving. The wolf sometimes walk on the ice of the lake and have been seen from the accommodation.
You will be outside every day for the largest part of the day. It will be freezing, but you will also be active. Good clothing is essential so that you don't freeze when standing still or sweat while walking. Find below a list with the most important pieces of clothing.
A warm winter parka jacket would be the best option. It is important that no wind comes through the fabric and that it is water proof.
Warm skiing trousers are perfect for this tour.
For the cold days it is nice to have a set of thermo base layers.
Warm snow boots. Make sure that the shoes are not too small, because this will result in cold feet. The best is to bring boots which are a bit too large, so that you can ware an extra layer of socks.
Thick (smart)woolen socks
Gamaschen / gaiters
It is the best to have a set of thermo-gloves plus a set of mittens. This combination will keep your fingers nice and warm.
Sunglasses are an absolute must to have. The snow reflects a lot of light, which could damage your eyes when the sun is shining.
Warm head covering the ears
Other equipment needed:
Bring a medium size backpack which will fit some extra clothing, lunch, a thermos and maybe your camera. The backpack can be stored in the sledges.
Because of the cold, it is smart to bring something warm to drink with you out in the field. In the morning you will be able to fill your thermos with tea or coffee.