Turning Heads Kennel is an elite team of canine athletes and two mushers. Together, we travel Alaska’s vast wilderness, race the 1,000 mile Iditarod, and introduce Alaskan visitors to our amazing lifestyle. We are passionate about what we do and have had our hard work rewarded through improved race records, awards for “best dog care,” and great reviews about our tours from our many visitors.
What Sets Us Apart:
We are the smallest glacier dog sledding operation in the state of Alaska and pride ourselves on our high-quality hands-on tours that focus on providing one-on-one experiences. We emphasize great customer service and great dog care — our dogs absolutely love what they do.
Dog Sled Tours:
Our dog sled tours are the heart and soul of what we do. They are our way of sharing what we love with an interested public and help us sustain our kennel financially so that we can continue doing what we love! There is nothing more magical for us than getting to share dog mushing with those interested in having a wonderfully unique Alaskan experience!
We also love showcasing our hometown of Seward, Alaska, and with the help of Seward Helicopter Tours, get to show off the exquisite beauty that surrounds our kennel by offering some amazing scenic flights of our local area!
What we'll do
Our ride and kennel tour is a one-of-a-kind experience. The best part? Our tours are intentionally kept small because dog sledding is all about the bond a musher has with their dogs and we want to show that to you. Because of that, Travis and Sarah, the owners give over 95% of the tours themselves. After all, they know their dogs best! Both Travis and Sarah have run the 1,000 mile Iditarod and those working with them often aspire to compete in it too. Small tours also mean that you will have plenty of time to ask questions, meet the dogs, and snuggle our husky puppies.
First, get ready for our tour. You don’t really need any special clothing, but make sure you are comfortable. We recommend closed-toed shoes in the dog lot. Sled dogs can be playful. Guests that want the full kennel experience are advised to wear a rain jacket or another piece of clothing they don’t mind getting dirty — but don’t worry, this isn’t mandatory and if you show up in your Sunday Best our dogs will be sure to mind their manners.
In the event it is raining, most of our tour is covered to keep you dry. We will still go out if it rains because this is our dogs' favorite weather: the cooler temperatures allow them to perform better and longer. If you are feeling the Alaskan chill, we have a nice warm fire to keep you nice and toasty. If it is exceptionally hot out we may also do things differently to accommodate the needs of our dogs. Depending on how hot it is, we may have to stop more frequently or shorten your dog sledding experience because everything we do is about our dogs and their well-being.
At our kennel, you’ll be greeted by a plethora of wagging tails from our retirees who now hold the official title of “kennel greeters.” Give our loving older dogs a quick pat on the head, if you like, before checking in to our tour. While you wait for the tour to begin, check out some of our racing memorabilia and photographs hanging on the walls or take a group photo in front of our kennel sign. Then, it’s time to start! When you meet Travis or Sarah, or perhaps one of their helpers, you will be swept up in their passion for their dogs.
Before you head into the dog yard, you’ll be given a quick overview of our dog lot rules and how to interact with our dogs. Our dogs are all very friendly but to ensure a positive experience for both our guests and our dogs, we always teach our visitors how to interact with our dogs. Under the supervision of one of our guides, we invite you to pet and play with our dogs — though you certainly don’t have to. Take pictures of our sled dogs and their colorful houses. Then, it’s time to sing! Everyone loves a good husky howl and what better way to bond than by leading the canine choir in a big howl!
After our beautiful song together, it’s time to learn about mushing. Hear tales from the trail as you learn about the gear both mushers and dogs need to excel on a 1,000-mile dog race. Learn how we deal with things like open water at -40 and the rigorous routine we go through to take excellent care of our dogs while we are racing and training.
We conclude our kennel tour by meeting the youngest members of the pack: our puppies. Steal kisses and cuddles from puppies from as young as 2 days old to up to 10 weeks old. Our puppies' hilarious personalities and antics will have you laughing. Trust us, you won’t want to say goodbye to these guys!
After getting your fill of kisses, it’s time to mush! We have a custom-built cart that we hook our dogs up to so we can run on the dirt. A lot of people think dog sledding is only done in the winter, but a majority of our training actually happens before the snow falls on carts, like the one we will go out on, and ATVs. If you are interested in mushing on snow, please check out our glacier dog sledding ride or visit us for a winter tour.
Once you are seated on our cart, we will start hooking the team-up. In their excitement, our dogs jump and bark. This is a great time to get some action shots, so while you watch us hook up the team pulls out the camera. People never believe how high our dogs can jump and it’s a great memory to have on camera! See first hand the love and joy that running brings these amazing athletes.
Once the last pair of dogs are hooked up, it’s time to take off. The team instantly quiets as we set off on our training session. The commands start just a few moments into the run. Watch in amazement as our leaders respond with precision timing. At least, that’s what we hope! We often use this tour to train new lead dogs so sometimes things don’t always go according to plan. As exciting as it is to watch the dogs get it right, it is equally enthralling to watch as we work with new lead dogs and the light bulb clicks. No other dog sled tour offers this unique behind-the-scenes opportunity to watch actual training occur. We think it’s pretty special and we know you will too!
The ride will go all too quickly and when it ends, we guarantee that you will be impressed with our dogs' athleticism and their intelligence. Back in the yard, we get water for the dogs and give them a scratch on the head to say thanks. Pose with our lead dogs for the day as a great souvenir postcard before saying goodbye. We’ll tell you ways to continue your involvement with our dogs if you find yourself enraptured with the sport of dog mushing and want to follow along on our training and racing journey.
We kindly ask that you do not bring treats for our dogs. We appreciate the warm thoughts and well wishes but our sled dogs are the canine equivalent of Olympic athletes and have a highly tailored nutrition program. Unfortunately, our dogs turn to tend to turn their nose up at anything except the kibble we feed and, of course, meat. If you would like to reward the dogs for their hard work, please consider donating to their booty food or purchasing a round of kibble.
What to expect / what's provided
*Duration: 75 Minutes (approx.)
*Departures: 9:00, 11:30
- Amazing Lead Dog Demonstration and Training Exercise
- Exciting 20-Minute Sled Dog Ride
- Learn About Dog Sled Racing From Real Racers
- Meet Real Racing Huskies and Take Your Picture with Iditarod Super-Stars
- Cuddle Adorable Sled Dog Puppies
- No Extra Gear Needed. We provide it all.
- Appropriate for All Ages. Children 2 and Under Ride Free.
- Upgrade To Include Lunch
- Complimentary Pick Up and Drop Off at all Seward Area Hotels.
*What To Bring:
Sunglasses, Sunscreen, Jacket, Sneakers, or Boots. A raincoat is a nice piece of gear to have when petting dirty dogs!
Due to our limited departures, this tour fills up quickly. Book Early!