Are you an Individual, Corporate or Charity interested in having your own private group departure?
If yes, please email info@charitychallenge.com and one of our team will be in touch to help with your enquiry.

2025

Special offer

 25TH BIRTHDAY  

Use the code 25BIRTHDAY for 25% off your reg fee for 25 days!

9am Mon 10 June until Midnight Thurs 4th July 2024

T&C's apply

Fri 21 Mar - Thu 27 Mar 2025

OVERVIEW

What to expect

ITINERARY

What you will do

COSTS

Ways to pay

ESSENTIAL INFO

All you need to know

Everything you need to know

This page provides you with a variety of information about the challenge that you might find useful.

Level of Difficulty

Typical day

About the dogs

How many dogs will I be driving?

Safety of the dogs

The right attitude

How easy is it to control the team of dogs?

Safety

Responsible Tourism

Flights

Visa

Insurance

Vaccinations & Medicines

Climate & Terrain

Will I see the Northern Lights?

Training

Luggage allowance and valuables

Leadership

Group Size

Clothing and equipment

Accommodation & Toilets

Food & Drink

Money

Phone and WiFi

Emergencies

Pre-Existing Medical Conditions

Medical Support

Level of Difficulty

The Dog Sledding challenge is graded as “Challenging”. Physically, this is less demanding than a trek or bike ride but don’t for one second think that you just stand on the sled and the dogs do all of the work. You need to be in control of the sled and the team of dogs and this requires you to be switched on both physically and mentally on a constant basis. You can read more below on “What it takes to drive a team of huskies.” This is the perfect challenge for participants who are of an adventurous spirit and an open mind, but perhaps haven’t taken on a strenuous challenge event previously and are willing to truly push themselves out of their comfort zone! It is imperative you have a good level of fitness, so you can manage the sled without falling off, and stay in control of the team and get back on the sled when you do fall off. Whilst this does happen occasionally you will need to get up quickly without assistance, often in very deep snow, and to try and regain control of the sled. A BMI of under 30 (preferably under 25), is appropriate for this trip due to the nature of the physical demands on yourself and the dogs. Don’t estimate what is required to run uphill to catch up with your sled, in minus 30 degrees Celsius, when wearing five layers of clothing and huge snow boots!

You can tell your supporters that on your Dog Sledding Challenge you will be:

  • Sledding for around 5 hours per day
  • Covering almost 200km across 5 days of sledding
  • Using your core strength to control the team of three or four powerful huskies
  • Sleeping in temperatures that can reach -40 Celsius
  • Overnighting in very basic wilderness cabins, without electricity or running water, where the toilets are outside and where you will room together in one large open room
  • Taking charge of and looking after your own team of dogs. You will see to their needs before yours!

Level of Difficulty

The Dog Sledding challenge is graded as “Challenging”. Physically, this is less demanding than a trek or bike ride but don’t for one second think that you just stand on the sled and the dogs do all of the work. You need to be in control of the sled and the team of dogs and this requires you to be switched on both physically and mentally on a constant basis. You can read more below on “What it takes to drive a team of huskies.” This is the perfect challenge for participants who are of an adventurous spirit and an open mind, but perhaps haven’t taken on a strenuous challenge event previously and are willing to truly push themselves out of their comfort zone! It is imperative you have a good level of fitness, so you can manage the sled without falling off, and stay in control of the team and get back on the sled when you do fall off. Whilst this does happen occasionally you will need to get up quickly without assistance, often in very deep snow, and to try and regain control of the sled. A BMI of under 30 (preferably under 25), is appropriate for this trip due to the nature of the physical demands on yourself and the dogs. Don’t estimate what is required to run uphill to catch up with your sled, in minus 30 degrees Celsius, when wearing five layers of clothing and huge snow boots!

You can tell your supporters that on your Dog Sledding Challenge you will be:

  • Sledding for around 5 hours per day
  • Covering almost 200km across 5 days of sledding
  • Using your core strength to control the team of three or four powerful huskies
  • Sleeping in temperatures that can reach -40 Celsius
  • Overnighting in very basic wilderness cabins, without electricity or running water, where the toilets are outside and where you will room together in one large open room
  • Taking charge of and looking after your own team of dogs. You will see to their needs before yours!

Typical day

You will wake early in time to feed your dogs and clear up their poo, before having your own breakfast. Dressing for the worst possible weather, you will prepare your sled, harness the dogs one by one, and then begin driving your dogs for 35- 45kms per day, stopping for lunch en-route in a cabin or tee pee where lunch is prepared on an open fire. There will be plenty of refreshment stops, and opportunities to take photos and video. In the evening you will arrive at your wilderness hut where you will first give the dogs some snacks whilst you unharness them and settle them into their individual kennels, then collect water from the frozen lake, chop and collect wood for the fire, return to feed the dogs their evening meal and finally you can relax and have dinner in the cabin. Everyone takes turns to wash and dry up and after a briefing about the following day you can head off to sleep ready for another long day of sledding.

Typical day

You will wake early in time to feed your dogs and clear up their poo, before having your own breakfast. Dressing for the worst possible weather, you will prepare your sled, harness the dogs one by one, and then begin driving your dogs for 35- 45kms per day, stopping for lunch en-route in a cabin or tee pee where lunch is prepared on an open fire. There will be plenty of refreshment stops, and opportunities to take photos and video. In the evening you will arrive at your wilderness hut where you will first give the dogs some snacks whilst you unharness them and settle them into their individual kennels, then collect water from the frozen lake, chop and collect wood for the fire, return to feed the dogs their evening meal and finally you can relax and have dinner in the cabin. Everyone takes turns to wash and dry up and after a briefing about the following day you can head off to sleep ready for another long day of sledding.

About the dogs

All the dogs are sociable, friendly and love attention. A cuddle and lots of love is greatly appreciated by our four legged friends! The team we work with in Sweden (headed up by Kent and Jordana), provide the most incredible hospitality in what are the most inhospitable freezing Arctic conditions) have around 70 working dogs, who have all been bred by them. At the kennels where they live from day to day, they have enclosures of two to three dogs. Despite the freezing temperatures, the husky’s comfort temperature is minus 15 degrees Celsius. They are fed on a diet of both raw and processed food to ensure they get all of the necessary fuel for their energetic work. Once the dogs have aged and are no longer up to the work, they are adopted by local families (and former sledding clients).

All dog kennels in Sweden have to adhere to the requirements as stipulated by Lanstyrelsen, the government agency responsible for animal welfare. In accordance with this Swedish Law, all matters pertaining to the dogs welfare is regulated including amongst other things, the size and dimensions of their living quarters (which have to be insulated), the area for them to run around when in kennels and the size of their transportation boxes. Our team in Sweden are strongly committed to having a healthy, safe and happy environment for each and every one of their dogs. Their training routines and rotation of dogs used, ensures that the dogs are never overworked.

About the dogs

All the dogs are sociable, friendly and love attention. A cuddle and lots of love is greatly appreciated by our four legged friends! The team we work with in Sweden (headed up by Kent and Jordana), provide the most incredible hospitality in what are the most inhospitable freezing Arctic conditions) have around 70 working dogs, who have all been bred by them. At the kennels where they live from day to day, they have enclosures of two to three dogs. Despite the freezing temperatures, the husky’s comfort temperature is minus 15 degrees Celsius. They are fed on a diet of both raw and processed food to ensure they get all of the necessary fuel for their energetic work. Once the dogs have aged and are no longer up to the work, they are adopted by local families (and former sledding clients).

All dog kennels in Sweden have to adhere to the requirements as stipulated by Lanstyrelsen, the government agency responsible for animal welfare. In accordance with this Swedish Law, all matters pertaining to the dogs welfare is regulated including amongst other things, the size and dimensions of their living quarters (which have to be insulated), the area for them to run around when in kennels and the size of their transportation boxes. Our team in Sweden are strongly committed to having a healthy, safe and happy environment for each and every one of their dogs. Their training routines and rotation of dogs used, ensures that the dogs are never overworked.

How many dogs will I be driving?

As a rule of thumb you will be driving 3 or 4 dogs. Most people will drive 4 dogs, but some may drive 3. This may seem like a small number, but you should not be fooled by their size – they are incredibly strong. All of the dog teams drive at the same speed, so you have to take into consideration the weight of the sled and equipment as well as your own weight and that of everyone else on the expedition. Do also keep in mind that you have to learn to be in control of your dog team, and not vice versa.

How many dogs will I be driving?

As a rule of thumb you will be driving 3 or 4 dogs. Most people will drive 4 dogs, but some may drive 3. This may seem like a small number, but you should not be fooled by their size – they are incredibly strong. All of the dog teams drive at the same speed, so you have to take into consideration the weight of the sled and equipment as well as your own weight and that of everyone else on the expedition. Do also keep in mind that you have to learn to be in control of your dog team, and not vice versa.

Safety of the dogs

The dogs are family to Kent and Jordana and to each other. Every dog is a mum or dad, brother or sister or cousin to the others, and you need to understand that there are serious consequences for the dogs if you lose control of your sled. If you don’t follow instructions, you can easily put the dogs at risk, and they can get seriously injured. You wil get thorough training before you head off and the days start on more established paths and get progressively more difficult as the days go on. But we ask you to seriously consider your reasons for wanting to take on this challenge.

Safety of the dogs

The dogs are family to Kent and Jordana and to each other. Every dog is a mum or dad, brother or sister or cousin to the others, and you need to understand that there are serious consequences for the dogs if you lose control of your sled. If you don’t follow instructions, you can easily put the dogs at risk, and they can get seriously injured. You wil get thorough training before you head off and the days start on more established paths and get progressively more difficult as the days go on. But we ask you to seriously consider your reasons for wanting to take on this challenge.

The right attitude

Please do not book if you simply want to tick the Arctic and Dog Sledding off of your bucket list.

Please do book if you can accept that you are going to be challenged both mentally and physically, pushed out of your comfort zone, having to operate in the harshest of Arctic conditions, with minimal infrastructure that you have at home, and most importantly that you understand and are willing to take on the role of caring for your team of huskies unconditionally throughout the duration of your challenge, and put their needs before your own.

The right attitude

Please do not book if you simply want to tick the Arctic and Dog Sledding off of your bucket list.

Please do book if you can accept that you are going to be challenged both mentally and physically, pushed out of your comfort zone, having to operate in the harshest of Arctic conditions, with minimal infrastructure that you have at home, and most importantly that you understand and are willing to take on the role of caring for your team of huskies unconditionally throughout the duration of your challenge, and put their needs before your own.

How easy is it to control the team of dogs?

The dogs know their role. They have been trained from an early age and the lead dogs are normally older and more experienced and show the way to the younger dogs. You will be given instruction both verbally and in written format, in the hotel before you depart for the kennels and then again with the sleds once at the kennels. You will have a short afternoon ride to get used to the sleds and the dogs, harnessing and unharnessing them, and each day the terrain will get slightly more challenging, as you hone your skills. You will learn to stay standing on the sled when taking bends and corners, or where the ground is either angled leaning to the left or the right, so a good sense of balance is required. The dogs are powerful and when they pull off from a starting position, you need to use your strength to hold off. There’s no first gear, second gear, they go from nothing to full power instantly! You will need to break with your left foot, your right foot, both feet, soft break, hard break, lean to keep upright when moving over uneven terrain, and keep the right speed. Too fast means you will run into the sled in front, or the dogs will try and run around the team in front, meaning they run off the path which could be 4 feet deep in snow! Breaking too late if you’re not paying attention could mean the sled runs in to the back of your dogs as when they stop, the sled will keep going unless you control it. This description is not intended to scare you but to make sure that you understand dog sledding is anything but, just standing on the back of the sled and holding on whilst the dogs just pull you along.

How easy is it to control the team of dogs?

The dogs know their role. They have been trained from an early age and the lead dogs are normally older and more experienced and show the way to the younger dogs. You will be given instruction both verbally and in written format, in the hotel before you depart for the kennels and then again with the sleds once at the kennels. You will have a short afternoon ride to get used to the sleds and the dogs, harnessing and unharnessing them, and each day the terrain will get slightly more challenging, as you hone your skills. You will learn to stay standing on the sled when taking bends and corners, or where the ground is either angled leaning to the left or the right, so a good sense of balance is required. The dogs are powerful and when they pull off from a starting position, you need to use your strength to hold off. There’s no first gear, second gear, they go from nothing to full power instantly! You will need to break with your left foot, your right foot, both feet, soft break, hard break, lean to keep upright when moving over uneven terrain, and keep the right speed. Too fast means you will run into the sled in front, or the dogs will try and run around the team in front, meaning they run off the path which could be 4 feet deep in snow! Breaking too late if you’re not paying attention could mean the sled runs in to the back of your dogs as when they stop, the sled will keep going unless you control it. This description is not intended to scare you but to make sure that you understand dog sledding is anything but, just standing on the back of the sled and holding on whilst the dogs just pull you along.

Safety

Charity Challenge considers the safety of all of our participants and staff to be a top priority, and as such we have set up Challenge Safe, one of the most advanced and thorough safety management systems in the industry. Challenge Safe formalises our ethos when it comes to safety, and brings together the procedures and risk management strategies that we use to audit all aspects of our challenges, from vehicles to accommodation to the challenge activity itself. Your welfare is absolutely paramount! In terms of your Dog Sledding challenge, there are a couple of important points that you should be aware of:

  • The temperatures could reach down to -40 degrees Celsius at night, so appropriate winter clothing and equipment is absolutely essential. The temperature can drop within an hour by as much as 10-15 degrees. You need to always take care to have the right clothing with you. Follow all instructions given on what to take and how to dress to avoid the risks of hypothermia or frost bite. The good thing is that with the right clothing, you can easily manage in extreme conditions.   
  • You will be working very closely with the dogs, who are powerful, excitable and boisterous. This will be difficult for anyone with a fear of animals
  • You could be up to 8 hours from evacuation, with evacuation procedures involving a snowmobile to the main road
  • Participants with any medical condition that might require urgent medical attention may want to consider this before booking
  • Some of the activities are undertaken on a voluntary basis such as chopping wood or making the hole in the frozen lake each night, to collect water. You should only undertake these activities after receiving training, and if you feel comfortable. No one will be forced to do these higher risk activities.

Safety

Charity Challenge considers the safety of all of our participants and staff to be a top priority, and as such we have set up Challenge Safe, one of the most advanced and thorough safety management systems in the industry. Challenge Safe formalises our ethos when it comes to safety, and brings together the procedures and risk management strategies that we use to audit all aspects of our challenges, from vehicles to accommodation to the challenge activity itself. Your welfare is absolutely paramount! In terms of your Dog Sledding challenge, there are a couple of important points that you should be aware of:

  • The temperatures could reach down to -40 degrees Celsius at night, so appropriate winter clothing and equipment is absolutely essential. The temperature can drop within an hour by as much as 10-15 degrees. You need to always take care to have the right clothing with you. Follow all instructions given on what to take and how to dress to avoid the risks of hypothermia or frost bite. The good thing is that with the right clothing, you can easily manage in extreme conditions.   
  • You will be working very closely with the dogs, who are powerful, excitable and boisterous. This will be difficult for anyone with a fear of animals
  • You could be up to 8 hours from evacuation, with evacuation procedures involving a snowmobile to the main road
  • Participants with any medical condition that might require urgent medical attention may want to consider this before booking
  • Some of the activities are undertaken on a voluntary basis such as chopping wood or making the hole in the frozen lake each night, to collect water. You should only undertake these activities after receiving training, and if you feel comfortable. No one will be forced to do these higher risk activities.

Responsible Tourism

At Charity Challenge we are committed to sustainable and responsible tourism, and work closely with bodies such as the International Porter Protection Group and Climate Care to ensure that our challenges benefit the local environments and communities in which they take place. We ensure that all rubbish is disposed of responsibly, and following local guidelines on cultural and environmental protection and respect, we aim to limit our impact on the natural environment. In addition to taking these practical steps to ensure that our challenges are sustainable, we also make a contribution each year to a number of local community projects, so as to give something back directly to the communities that we visit. Since 2000 we have donated almost £200,000 to such projects, supporting a range of initiatives, including schooling for children in Africa, shelter for street children in Brazil, and Orang-utan conservation in Indonesia. For more information, please visit our Responsible Tourism pages.

Responsible Tourism

At Charity Challenge we are committed to sustainable and responsible tourism, and work closely with bodies such as the International Porter Protection Group and Climate Care to ensure that our challenges benefit the local environments and communities in which they take place. We ensure that all rubbish is disposed of responsibly, and following local guidelines on cultural and environmental protection and respect, we aim to limit our impact on the natural environment. In addition to taking these practical steps to ensure that our challenges are sustainable, we also make a contribution each year to a number of local community projects, so as to give something back directly to the communities that we visit. Since 2000 we have donated almost £200,000 to such projects, supporting a range of initiatives, including schooling for children in Africa, shelter for street children in Brazil, and Orang-utan conservation in Indonesia. For more information, please visit our Responsible Tourism pages.

Flights

You will be flying from London to Kiruna via Stockholm. The flight will take approx. 5 hours. The airline and routing will be confirmed one month prior to departure. Your flight tickets will be e-mailed to you before departure.

If you choose to book your own flights you must confirm with the Charity Challenge office before paying otherwise you may be liable for your included group flights (please contact flights@charitychallenge.com for further assistance).

Please note: Timings of the group flights are subject to change so please take this into consideration when booking domestic travel arrangements to reach your departure airport i.e. book flexible tickets where possible. We are unable to take responsibility for the consequences of missed international flights due to delayed travel arrangements to the airport. We therefore advise you, when booking transport and making any arrangements, to plan to get to the airport in plenty of time allowing for any possible delays which may occur on the day (bad weather, break down, cancellations etc). If you book a domestic flight, in order to get to your international departure airport, please do consider that this flight ticket cannot be linked to the ticket we are organising for you; you will need to collect your luggage, possibly change terminal and check-in again as normal.

Flights

You will be flying from London to Kiruna via Stockholm. The flight will take approx. 5 hours. The airline and routing will be confirmed one month prior to departure. Your flight tickets will be e-mailed to you before departure.

If you choose to book your own flights you must confirm with the Charity Challenge office before paying otherwise you may be liable for your included group flights (please contact flights@charitychallenge.com for further assistance).

Please note: Timings of the group flights are subject to change so please take this into consideration when booking domestic travel arrangements to reach your departure airport i.e. book flexible tickets where possible. We are unable to take responsibility for the consequences of missed international flights due to delayed travel arrangements to the airport. We therefore advise you, when booking transport and making any arrangements, to plan to get to the airport in plenty of time allowing for any possible delays which may occur on the day (bad weather, break down, cancellations etc). If you book a domestic flight, in order to get to your international departure airport, please do consider that this flight ticket cannot be linked to the ticket we are organising for you; you will need to collect your luggage, possibly change terminal and check-in again as normal.

Visa

A full passport is required with six months to run from the end of the expedition, but no visa is necessary for British Citizens.

Visa

A full passport is required with six months to run from the end of the expedition, but no visa is necessary for British Citizens.

Insurance

Your safety when travelling with Charity Challenges is our main concern which is why it is a booking condition that you have a suitable travel insurance policy that will cover you for the adventurous nature of your challenge. We have chosen to partner with specialist travel insurance providers Campbell Irvine, who offer cover for an extensive number of adventurous activities. Cover is available directly from Campbell Irvine for most European residents and includes cover for emergency medical and repatriation and for your cancellation or curtailment of the challenge. Full details including costs may be found by clicking here

For more general travel insurance questions, please refer to our main FAQs page.

Insurance

Your safety when travelling with Charity Challenges is our main concern which is why it is a booking condition that you have a suitable travel insurance policy that will cover you for the adventurous nature of your challenge. We have chosen to partner with specialist travel insurance providers Campbell Irvine, who offer cover for an extensive number of adventurous activities. Cover is available directly from Campbell Irvine for most European residents and includes cover for emergency medical and repatriation and for your cancellation or curtailment of the challenge. Full details including costs may be found by clicking here

For more general travel insurance questions, please refer to our main FAQs page.

Vaccinations & Medicines

For up to date vaccination information please check the Travel Health Pro page: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/country/215/sweden#Vaccine_recommendations

Charity Challenge are not medical experts and we would encourage you to visit your doctor or travel nurse to discuss vaccination requirements.

Medication

  • Carry medicines (including those bought over the counter) in their correctly labelled original packaging, as issued by the pharmacist. These should be carried in your hand luggage.
  • Consider packing a spare supply of medication in the hold luggage in case of loss of hand luggage
  • A letter from the prescriber detailing the medicines with the generic names for the medications can be helpful for border control checks, and in case medicines have to be replaced or medical help is required
  • Carry a note from the prescribing physician on letterhead stationery for controlled substances and injection medications
  • Take out an appropriate level of travel health insurance including repatriation and specific cover for any pre-existing illnesses

N.B. Some medications are banned abroad so please check. You can find further information at https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/factsheet/43/medicines-abroad

 

Vaccinations & Medicines

For up to date vaccination information please check the Travel Health Pro page: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/country/215/sweden#Vaccine_recommendations

Charity Challenge are not medical experts and we would encourage you to visit your doctor or travel nurse to discuss vaccination requirements.

Medication

  • Carry medicines (including those bought over the counter) in their correctly labelled original packaging, as issued by the pharmacist. These should be carried in your hand luggage.
  • Consider packing a spare supply of medication in the hold luggage in case of loss of hand luggage
  • A letter from the prescriber detailing the medicines with the generic names for the medications can be helpful for border control checks, and in case medicines have to be replaced or medical help is required
  • Carry a note from the prescribing physician on letterhead stationery for controlled substances and injection medications
  • Take out an appropriate level of travel health insurance including repatriation and specific cover for any pre-existing illnesses

N.B. Some medications are banned abroad so please check. You can find further information at https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/factsheet/43/medicines-abroad

 

Climate & Terrain

Climate

The temperatures range from -5C up to -45C! It is difficult to predict what temperature it is going to be but on average: December and January are the coldest months – it is the darkest time of the year with very little if any sunshine as the sun does not cross the horizon from December through to January. February is a great month as the temperatures are still very cold but the sun starts showing itself a little more each day. March is wonderful too as the temperatures are usually milder and the sun is shining brighter and longer! But don’t be fooled, even in March it is possible to have an evening with -30C. April still has snow but things start to get warm. The cold is a very dry cold. People are often surprised when the temperature is -15 C but it feels more like -5C in a humid climate. Nevertheless, when you are driving a sled you will also experience wind chill, which adds to the cold!

Terrain
This dog sledding challenge has varied snow filled terrain surrounded by trees and a surprising number of hills. You will need a great deal of core strength and balance to cope with the ascents and descents.

Climate & Terrain

Climate

The temperatures range from -5C up to -45C! It is difficult to predict what temperature it is going to be but on average: December and January are the coldest months – it is the darkest time of the year with very little if any sunshine as the sun does not cross the horizon from December through to January. February is a great month as the temperatures are still very cold but the sun starts showing itself a little more each day. March is wonderful too as the temperatures are usually milder and the sun is shining brighter and longer! But don’t be fooled, even in March it is possible to have an evening with -30C. April still has snow but things start to get warm. The cold is a very dry cold. People are often surprised when the temperature is -15 C but it feels more like -5C in a humid climate. Nevertheless, when you are driving a sled you will also experience wind chill, which adds to the cold!

Terrain
This dog sledding challenge has varied snow filled terrain surrounded by trees and a surprising number of hills. You will need a great deal of core strength and balance to cope with the ascents and descents.

Will I see the Northern Lights?

Your challenge is located about 200kms above the Arctic Circle. Due to the location, you have a greater chance of catching a glimpse of this magnificent spectacle. This is not guaranteed, of course, as it is a natural phenomenon and dependent on nature’s influences!

Will I see the Northern Lights?

Your challenge is located about 200kms above the Arctic Circle. Due to the location, you have a greater chance of catching a glimpse of this magnificent spectacle. This is not guaranteed, of course, as it is a natural phenomenon and dependent on nature’s influences!

Training

A good level of fitness is required due to the challenging nature of the terrain and the need to often get off and push or run with the sled to help it navigate through trees and up hills. A BMI of under 30 (preferably under 25), is appropriate for this trip due to the nature of the physical demands on yourself and the dogs. You will be asked to give your weight when booking on to the challenge. Please be as honest and accurate as you can as we allocate the team of dogs to you based on this information. Most people lose a little weight between booking and taking part, as a result of their training for the challenge. This can be managed.  If however, you put on weight from when you booked on to the challenge, you should let us know in advance otherwise it could cause issues for your husky team.

You do not need to have any previous experience in driving your own team of dogs but you DO need to be fit. Driving a pack of huskies is very tiring at times and you will be standing on your feet all day. Anyone can drive a dog team as long as you are focused and willing to listen and learn. You will also be taught how to take care of your team of dogs, including the ins and outs of mushing (sledding)!

Training

A good level of fitness is required due to the challenging nature of the terrain and the need to often get off and push or run with the sled to help it navigate through trees and up hills. A BMI of under 30 (preferably under 25), is appropriate for this trip due to the nature of the physical demands on yourself and the dogs. You will be asked to give your weight when booking on to the challenge. Please be as honest and accurate as you can as we allocate the team of dogs to you based on this information. Most people lose a little weight between booking and taking part, as a result of their training for the challenge. This can be managed.  If however, you put on weight from when you booked on to the challenge, you should let us know in advance otherwise it could cause issues for your husky team.

You do not need to have any previous experience in driving your own team of dogs but you DO need to be fit. Driving a pack of huskies is very tiring at times and you will be standing on your feet all day. Anyone can drive a dog team as long as you are focused and willing to listen and learn. You will also be taught how to take care of your team of dogs, including the ins and outs of mushing (sledding)!

Luggage allowance and valuables

As no formal clothes are needed, luggage should be kept to the absolute minimum as you will need to carry it for two days in your sled. Your rucksack or holdall must not exceed 20kg in weight (suitcases are not appropriate as they won’t fit in the sled).

Luggage allowance and valuables

As no formal clothes are needed, luggage should be kept to the absolute minimum as you will need to carry it for two days in your sled. Your rucksack or holdall must not exceed 20kg in weight (suitcases are not appropriate as they won’t fit in the sled).

Leadership

There will be an English-speaking challenge leader who will be responsible for the logistics and co-ordination of your challenge. The challenge leader will be ultimately responsible for the running of the itinerary and the safety of your group. The Arctic is a hostile and unforgiving environment. Your safety and that of the huskies is in your hands, and therefore the leaders who survive year-round in these harsh conditions are very black and white when it comes to how things should be done. If you have a sensitive nature, please be aware that will be given direct instructions and sometimes direct feedback if you are not following the instructions! It’s not to everyone’s liking but is essential to keep everyone safe in the challenging environment.

Leadership

There will be an English-speaking challenge leader who will be responsible for the logistics and co-ordination of your challenge. The challenge leader will be ultimately responsible for the running of the itinerary and the safety of your group. The Arctic is a hostile and unforgiving environment. Your safety and that of the huskies is in your hands, and therefore the leaders who survive year-round in these harsh conditions are very black and white when it comes to how things should be done. If you have a sensitive nature, please be aware that will be given direct instructions and sometimes direct feedback if you are not following the instructions! It’s not to everyone’s liking but is essential to keep everyone safe in the challenging environment.

Group Size

Each group is intended to be a minimum of 7 people in order to run and a maximum of 8 people due to the wilderness environment in which the challenge takes place. We will be able to run this challenge for 5 to 7 people by charging a small group supplement of £125 which will be added to your final balance invoice (self-funders) or charged to your charity (minimum sponsorship or flexi).

Group Size

Each group is intended to be a minimum of 7 people in order to run and a maximum of 8 people due to the wilderness environment in which the challenge takes place. We will be able to run this challenge for 5 to 7 people by charging a small group supplement of £125 which will be added to your final balance invoice (self-funders) or charged to your charity (minimum sponsorship or flexi).

Clothing and equipment

Good quality, durable kit could mean the difference between a fantastic challenge experience and an uncomfortable one. In Sweden, you will be provided with the specialist winter snowsuits, mittens (to go over your own gloves), and snow shoes that you will need to wear while you are sledding.

However, you will need to bring very warm clothes to wear underneath and when around the cabins in the evening. Woollen socks are a must, as cotton does not work well in extremely cold conditions, and you should bring some fleece lined trousers, salopettes or skiing trousers with you to wear when not sledding. You will need different types of gloves on this trip for both mushing and around the camp. The first pair should be thin, warm, and waterproof gloves for that can be used for feeding (raw food) and harnessing the dogs. You will also need warm liners for the mushing mitts and our agent recommends woollen mittens.

A full kit list for this challenge can be found in your account area, and once you book you will have access to kit discounts with our partners The Outdoor Shop, Outdoorhire and Cotswold Outdoor.

As the biggest risk on this challenge is the extreme cold, you must bring the right clothing with you. Please pay close attention to the kit list and bring everything that is essential. Staying warm (both when sledding and when trying to sleep) is the key to staying comfortable.

Clothing and equipment

Good quality, durable kit could mean the difference between a fantastic challenge experience and an uncomfortable one. In Sweden, you will be provided with the specialist winter snowsuits, mittens (to go over your own gloves), and snow shoes that you will need to wear while you are sledding.

However, you will need to bring very warm clothes to wear underneath and when around the cabins in the evening. Woollen socks are a must, as cotton does not work well in extremely cold conditions, and you should bring some fleece lined trousers, salopettes or skiing trousers with you to wear when not sledding. You will need different types of gloves on this trip for both mushing and around the camp. The first pair should be thin, warm, and waterproof gloves for that can be used for feeding (raw food) and harnessing the dogs. You will also need warm liners for the mushing mitts and our agent recommends woollen mittens.

A full kit list for this challenge can be found in your account area, and once you book you will have access to kit discounts with our partners The Outdoor Shop, Outdoorhire and Cotswold Outdoor.

As the biggest risk on this challenge is the extreme cold, you must bring the right clothing with you. Please pay close attention to the kit list and bring everything that is essential. Staying warm (both when sledding and when trying to sleep) is the key to staying comfortable.

Accommodation & Toilets

Accommodation

During the challenge your accommodation will be in shared facilities and living quarters.

On the first and last nights you will be in twin or triple shared, en-suite rooms in a hotel in Kiruna.

On the second night, you will be staying in a Sami tee pee by the kennels, sleeping on reindeer skins around a fire. It is likely to be very cold this night. It will give you an insight into the harsh conditions that the Sami people have survived in for years.

In the wilderness huts, there are three open plan areas for sleeping (bunk beds) around a kitchen/dining area. You will not have access to electricity or running water. You will fetch water from the lake for the dogs and washing, chop your own wood and use it to keep warm and prepare food with, for yourself and for your dogs. To compensate for the otherwise Spartan conditions, you will happily be able to relax in the sauna for an evening (if it's warm enough)!

Toilets
The wilderness cabins and the Sami tee pee have outside toilets. Toilet paper is provided, though it is worth bringing a supply of your own for during the day whilst on the sledges. You should also bring your own towel with you for washing and if you use the sauna.

Accommodation & Toilets

Accommodation

During the challenge your accommodation will be in shared facilities and living quarters.

On the first and last nights you will be in twin or triple shared, en-suite rooms in a hotel in Kiruna.

On the second night, you will be staying in a Sami tee pee by the kennels, sleeping on reindeer skins around a fire. It is likely to be very cold this night. It will give you an insight into the harsh conditions that the Sami people have survived in for years.

In the wilderness huts, there are three open plan areas for sleeping (bunk beds) around a kitchen/dining area. You will not have access to electricity or running water. You will fetch water from the lake for the dogs and washing, chop your own wood and use it to keep warm and prepare food with, for yourself and for your dogs. To compensate for the otherwise Spartan conditions, you will happily be able to relax in the sauna for an evening (if it's warm enough)!

Toilets
The wilderness cabins and the Sami tee pee have outside toilets. Toilet paper is provided, though it is worth bringing a supply of your own for during the day whilst on the sledges. You should also bring your own towel with you for washing and if you use the sauna.

Food & Drink

Expedition food will be very filling, nutritious and sourced locally – it includes reindeer, moose, and Swedish meatballs! Plenty of drinking water will be available to keep you hydrated. You might want to bring some extra snacks, such as energy bars, nutri-grains, dried fruits etc, however you generally have plenty of food available on this challenge. Please let Charity Challenge know prior to departure if you have any specific dietary requirements or allergies.

Food & Drink

Expedition food will be very filling, nutritious and sourced locally – it includes reindeer, moose, and Swedish meatballs! Plenty of drinking water will be available to keep you hydrated. You might want to bring some extra snacks, such as energy bars, nutri-grains, dried fruits etc, however you generally have plenty of food available on this challenge. Please let Charity Challenge know prior to departure if you have any specific dietary requirements or allergies.

Money

Currency: The Krona, which is subdivided into 100 öre. For up to date currency exchange, go to www.xe.com.

Cash: There are ATMs available at the airport and in Kiruna at the end of the challenge. This is the best source of obtaining currency whilst you are in Sweden.

Credit cards: Credit cards are reliable. Visa, MasterCard and American Express are the most widely accepted cards and may be used at cash points.

Spending money: You will not need large amounts of money during this trip. Credit cards are accepted and there are ATMs in Kiruna. To help you budget, prices in Sweden are as follows: GBP5-8 per beer in a restaurant, GBP2-6 per beer in a shop, GBP1.50 per glass of soft drink, GBP25 per bottle of wine in a restaurant. Approximately £100 in Krona should be sufficient but please take more if you plan to extend your stay, drink a lot, or buy souvenirs.

Tipping: Tipping is personal and at your sole discretion. You should only tip if you feel that you have received good service. We recommend approx. £70-75 and this should be given to the expedition leader at the end of the expedition who will make sure everyone involved in supporting the challenge behind the scenes) is tipped. In bars and restaurants tips are very common and are about 10% of the total bill.

Money

Currency: The Krona, which is subdivided into 100 öre. For up to date currency exchange, go to www.xe.com.

Cash: There are ATMs available at the airport and in Kiruna at the end of the challenge. This is the best source of obtaining currency whilst you are in Sweden.

Credit cards: Credit cards are reliable. Visa, MasterCard and American Express are the most widely accepted cards and may be used at cash points.

Spending money: You will not need large amounts of money during this trip. Credit cards are accepted and there are ATMs in Kiruna. To help you budget, prices in Sweden are as follows: GBP5-8 per beer in a restaurant, GBP2-6 per beer in a shop, GBP1.50 per glass of soft drink, GBP25 per bottle of wine in a restaurant. Approximately £100 in Krona should be sufficient but please take more if you plan to extend your stay, drink a lot, or buy souvenirs.

Tipping: Tipping is personal and at your sole discretion. You should only tip if you feel that you have received good service. We recommend approx. £70-75 and this should be given to the expedition leader at the end of the expedition who will make sure everyone involved in supporting the challenge behind the scenes) is tipped. In bars and restaurants tips are very common and are about 10% of the total bill.

Phone and WiFi

You will have phone signal in Kiruna, as well as access to WiFi in the hotel. However, this is possibly the last place that you will be able to make contact with the outside world. Once in the wilderness cabins, there is no WiFi access, and phone signal comes in-and-out of range. In addition, there is no electricity in the cabins and you won’t be able to charge your camera or phones. However, if you want to bring a solar charger this will work very well in late February to March, as the days are longer and the skies are clearer than earlier in Winter. Even if you do have phone signal, we ask you to have your phones on silent throughout the challenge and that I you do want to make or receive a call, that you go outside of the cabin or away from the group. You are on a wilderness challenge in the Arctic and for many, phones ringing will ruin a calm and peaceful moment! Please be respectful of this.

Phone and WiFi

You will have phone signal in Kiruna, as well as access to WiFi in the hotel. However, this is possibly the last place that you will be able to make contact with the outside world. Once in the wilderness cabins, there is no WiFi access, and phone signal comes in-and-out of range. In addition, there is no electricity in the cabins and you won’t be able to charge your camera or phones. However, if you want to bring a solar charger this will work very well in late February to March, as the days are longer and the skies are clearer than earlier in Winter. Even if you do have phone signal, we ask you to have your phones on silent throughout the challenge and that I you do want to make or receive a call, that you go outside of the cabin or away from the group. You are on a wilderness challenge in the Arctic and for many, phones ringing will ruin a calm and peaceful moment! Please be respectful of this.

Emergencies

The event is not run as a race and there is always a large discrepancy in people’s ability, which is allowed for (within reason). The challenge is run at the pace of the slowest sled so no one will ever be left behind but if you cannot keep up, it means the rest of the group could spend time waiting for you in minus 30 degrees Celsius. If we find somebody is unable to continue, then we can transport him or her back to the cabin or back to Kiruna with the help of our support team. But due to the fact that if you leave the group during the day, your dogs will still need to be driven back to the wilderness cabin or kennels, you are most likely going to be required to continue to the end of the day for the safety of the dogs, unless you absolutely cannot go on.  

Emergencies

The event is not run as a race and there is always a large discrepancy in people’s ability, which is allowed for (within reason). The challenge is run at the pace of the slowest sled so no one will ever be left behind but if you cannot keep up, it means the rest of the group could spend time waiting for you in minus 30 degrees Celsius. If we find somebody is unable to continue, then we can transport him or her back to the cabin or back to Kiruna with the help of our support team. But due to the fact that if you leave the group during the day, your dogs will still need to be driven back to the wilderness cabin or kennels, you are most likely going to be required to continue to the end of the day for the safety of the dogs, unless you absolutely cannot go on.  

Pre-Existing Medical Conditions

We do not professionally vet your medical details. Please assess for yourself We do not professionally vet your medical details. Please assess for yourself whether you are fit and able to take on the challenge. Please review the detailed Trip Notes and itinerary to get a better idea of what is involved. Please speak to your doctor or specialist if you have any concerns about taking part. If you think that there are things we can do to make the challenge more accessible/comfortable for you, it is your responsibility to let us know, and we will then let you know if we can accommodate your request.

Pre-Existing Medical Conditions

We do not professionally vet your medical details. Please assess for yourself We do not professionally vet your medical details. Please assess for yourself whether you are fit and able to take on the challenge. Please review the detailed Trip Notes and itinerary to get a better idea of what is involved. Please speak to your doctor or specialist if you have any concerns about taking part. If you think that there are things we can do to make the challenge more accessible/comfortable for you, it is your responsibility to let us know, and we will then let you know if we can accommodate your request.

Medical Support

First Aid qualified staff will be provided with the medical details that you give on your booking form but please note that they are on the challenge to support with medical matters related to the challenge environment and terrain itself, i.e. the cold and so on. They will deal with any incidents and accidents (cuts, sprains, breaks and so on). They are not intended to continue any ongoing specialist medical care that you receive in the UK for pre-exiting medical conditions, and should not be assumed to have any professional experience of your specific medical condition. If you have any specific needs around pre-existing medical conditions, you should discuss with your doctor or specialist in advance and can discuss any advice given by them with the challenge leader or doctor.

Medical Support

First Aid qualified staff will be provided with the medical details that you give on your booking form but please note that they are on the challenge to support with medical matters related to the challenge environment and terrain itself, i.e. the cold and so on. They will deal with any incidents and accidents (cuts, sprains, breaks and so on). They are not intended to continue any ongoing specialist medical care that you receive in the UK for pre-exiting medical conditions, and should not be assumed to have any professional experience of your specific medical condition. If you have any specific needs around pre-existing medical conditions, you should discuss with your doctor or specialist in advance and can discuss any advice given by them with the challenge leader or doctor.

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We hold an Air Travel Organiser's Licence granted by the Civil Aviation Authority. Our ATOL number is 6546. Many of the flight-inclusive challenges on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed on this website. This ATOL protection only covers challenges that include flights booked by Charity Challenge and that originate in the UK. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLcertificate

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