If you love skijoring, there are many miles of ungroomed areas near Grayling to enjoy. If you don’t know what skijoring is, or are new to the sport, read below.
Skijoring, a growing winter sport, is a cross between dog sledding and cross country skiing. It originates in Scandinavia, and allows a dog and owner to exercise together while enjoying the outdoors. A dog pulls a skier, who skis or brakes as they travel across natural snow. Skijoring requires only basic cross country ski gear and a harness for your dog, a skijoring belt for your waist, and a towline that connects you to your dog.
Dogs love to skijor. They enjoy the exercise, meeting other dogs, outdoor scents and of course, time spent with their owners. From a dog’s perspective, skijoring is as much fun as going for a walk. Skijorers love their dogs and enjoy spending time with them outdoors.
Most skijoring is done away from groomed trails, but backcountry skiers and snowshoers may also be present. In Crawford County, there are several ungroomed hiking areas available for skijoring. Over 70 percent of the county is state or federally owned, and much of that property is undeveloped and accessible to skijorers. Avoid groomed snowmobile and cross country ski trails.
Skijoring areas include:
- the Mason Tract Pathway’s ungroomed areas
- Wakeley Lake (federal sticker required)
- Rayburn Property
- certain areas of Hanson Hills Recreation Area
- certain areas at Forbush Corner Cross Country Ski area
- certain areas at Hartwick Pines State Park (state park sticker required)
- most state-owned property within Crawford County