LOWVILLE — Dog sleds and snowshoes are some of the alternative forms of winter transportation and recreation on Tug Hill over the weekend.

In Lewis County, the Great-Lot Sportsman’s club continues its free guided snowshoeing schedule on Saturday with its third hike this season.

Beginning at 10 a.m. from 4277 Osceola Rd., West Leyden, hikers will be led a mile to the clubhouse and then complete a two-mile loop through the woods that ends with a complimentary lunch of goulash, hot dogs and the extensive collections of dishes brought by return snowshoers, said Great-Lots’ principal officer Guy Case.

New this year, Mr. Case said, is that the first mile is being groomed and the suspension bridge was replaced over the summer with a steel-deck bridge.

Acoustic guitarist Jim Boccardo will also be playing at the clubhouse and hikers are welcome to sing along.

“The first hike this year we had 52 people, then 60 at the next one, but only half signed up,” Mr. Case said.

While there is always enough food for everyone coming, advance registration helps them plan for the crowd.

Participants can make their way around the curated Great-Lot trails led by a guide or, for the more adventurous, by striking out on their own with a trail map.

Experienced hikers interested in separating from the group can download a map from the club’s website and sign in at the kiosk.

There are some snowshoes available for use by people without their own, although the supply is limited.

Snowshoeing trips also will be held on Feb. 29, March 14 and March 28, all beginning at 10 a.m.

For questions or to make reservations, call 315-378-7592.

With good snow on the ground, the Pennsylvania Sled Dog Club’s Tug Hill Challenge dog sled race will take place on Saturday and Sunday at the Winona State Forest in the Jefferson County town of Lorraine, beginning at the historic “Civilian Conservation Corp.” or CCC Camp.

The races, beginning at 9 a.m. on Saturday and 8 a.m. on Sunday, range from 1.7 miles to 6.4 miles with anywhere from one to eight dog teams pulling everything from a child or an adult in a sled to a person on skis, known as skijoring or a fat wheeled bike, called bikejor.

Canicross, which is the cross-country race, will takes place both afternoons. Times are not specified in the schedule on the sled club’s site.

The races will be on portions of Bargy Road, Hessel Road, Alice’s Alley, Frank’s Fancy North, Tail Trail and Pussycat Trail.

Visitor parking is along the road near the camp.

According to its website, the Dog Sled Club, now with more than 150 members hailing from 10 states, was founded in 1971 to conduct and support safe and humane dog sled races.

The first Tug Hill Challenge dog sled race was held in 1993.

For more information, go to https://www.pasleddogclub.com/

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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