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Bikejoring (for peops with dogs who pull)

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Bikejoring (for peops with dogs who pull)

Old 05-26-17, 10:59 AM
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Gidgmom
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Bikejoring (for peops with dogs who pull)

I posted this information earlier today in the gravelbiking section in the photo thread but think it may be of interest to a broader group.

I smiled recently when I saw there is now a genre of bikes named for riding on gravel. I and several friends have for years been "gravelbiking" not knowing that's what we were doing as we were engaged in an even more obscure activity called: "bikejoring." Bikejoring is a sport for people with dogs who like to pull -- especially popular with people who have sledding breeds such as Huskies. I've had Samoyeds and began bikejoring and dogscootering in 2003. My scooters (Diggler Alpha Disc) have 20" wheels and that's what I did the first couple years with my Samoyed, then we moved to bikejoring -- for which I bought a Rocky Mountain Vertex 30 hardtail mtb. I then bought another of those and then a fatbike (Trek Farley 5 - for beach and snow). My Samoyed club has several people doing bikejoring and dogscootering -- with different rigs. We mostly run/ride on the C&O Canal near Washington, D.C.

Here's a webpage of various bikes, scooters and gear we use. I'll also (hopefully) get a couple of photos to upload. This is my first time trying to post a photo....

Bikejoring Gear

Clearly I'm not going to figure out the photo posting function today. Here's another page from our club's website with videos and other info related to bikejoring-dogscootering;

Dogscooter_Bikejoring

You'll see at the first link a photo of a friend's Trek 7.5 FX with 700x42 Continental Cyclocross knobby tires that replaced 700x32 street tires. It was a world of difference to have the Continentals -- plenty of grip on the C&O Canal, which is essentially a dirt road with some gravel/rock and frequently mud.

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Old 05-26-17, 11:39 AM
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Interesting and looks like fun! So do you pedal to assist the dog or just to get rolling and up steep(er) sections? I'm gonna guess there is a special harness for the dog?
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Old 05-26-17, 11:43 AM
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I used to see this cross country skiing when I lived up north, it was quite popular.

How fast can you really move along with a dog, though? Skiing speeds are much slower than I can ride even lazily on a bike. And how long does the dog go before tiring out? I can't imagine hefty exercise for Arctic dogs in the summer is great for their health, seems like they'd be prone to overheating.
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Old 05-26-17, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by zze86 View Post
Interesting and looks like fun! So do you pedal to assist the dog or just to get rolling and up steep(er) sections? I'm gonna guess there is a special harness for the dog?
Depends on the age and fitness of the dog(s) and how many dogs you are running. When my Samoyed girl, Gidget, was in her prime (age 2 - 8) she was topping out around 23 mph during six-mile outings. For most of that mileage her speeds would range from 11-12 mph (fast trot) and 6-8 mph (modest trot). Some of that I pedaled and some she did all the work. By the time she was nearing retirement at age 13, she was doing 3-4 miles @ 3-4 mph and I pedaled so she was doing no pulling.

I've always used "Urban Trail Harnesses" from Alpine Outfitters in Seattle. Gidg had two harnesses in her life and both are still in great shape (and occasionally loaned out).

Alpine Outfitters - Your One-Stop Shop for Quality Working Dog Gear - Alpine Outfitters We fit your dog sled needs.


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Old 05-26-17, 12:10 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
I used to see this cross country skiing when I lived up north, it was quite popular.

How fast can you really move along with a dog, though? Skiing speeds are much slower than I can ride even lazily on a bike. And how long does the dog go before tiring out? I can't imagine hefty exercise for Arctic dogs in the summer is great for their health, seems like they'd be prone to overheating.
I live in Washington, D.C. so humidity is a factor here. We bikejor from late-October through March and usually into April. 55 degrees is the highest temperature I'd run double-coated breeds like Samoyeds. For us, temps in the 30s-40s are optimal. Never too cold for the dogs here.

On the relatively flat C&O Canal along the Potomac River, we find the optimal distance to be 5-6 miles. We've done 9-10 mile outings and the dogs are fine with that (assuming they are in shape to begin with) but speeds are slower the last half.

Most of the Samoyeds I've bikejored with top out in the high teens (speed-wise). My Gidget was a fierce competitor, she wouldn't even let a dogless biker pass her without a race. Gidget came from a long line of sled dogs in Colorado -- her mom and dad raced on 4-dog teams (all Samoyeds) and her mom was the lead dog.


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Old 05-26-17, 12:16 PM
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Here's a video of me running a friend's two sammies. The girl, Blaze, is the stronger puller and is always crazy excited to get going (as you'll see). A fit Samoyed male can pull over 2,000 lbs for a short distance. A fit female can pull well over 1,000 lbs, so the bike's handlebars provided needed leverage at the start when the dogs are raring to go.

This was an 8 or 9-mile outing. While my girl, Gidget, was trained to "on-by" squirrels, ducks and other distractions, Blaze and Sarge in this video felt no such constraint in duck hunting in the canal. Almost took me with them.

I consider "On by!!" to be the most important command to teach. "Hike! Hike!" gets them going and "whoa" slows them down, or is supposed to. "Gee" and "haw" are for turns but Gidg never mastered those, which wasn't a problem because we bikejored-scootered on defined paths and were usually out at sunrise when there were few others using the trail.

By the way, dogs should be physically mature before doing this kind of activity which stresses the bones and joints. Eighteen months is widely considered a safe age to begin. Hard-core sledding people may start them around a year but I think that's way too young.



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Old 05-26-17, 01:13 PM
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Very cool!
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Old 05-26-17, 01:22 PM
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I tried this once with a hyperactive lab by tying his leash to my headtube. He immediately pulled me sideways and I hit the ground... hard. I haven't tried it since.
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Old 05-28-17, 12:53 PM
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I had a friend who owned a Samoyad named Jolli. He was very smart and beautiful and a wonderful family dog. I was happy to see your videos.
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Old 05-28-17, 01:17 PM
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Thanks for the video. I enjoyed it.
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Old 05-28-17, 10:39 PM
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I did this in 1980...with a 100 pound German shepherd. It was fun as heck 'till he saw a cat. Fastest I've ever gone on a single speed, fastest I've gone with the rear brake locked, and my first time through an uncontrolled intersection at what at the time felt like the speed of sound. We both survived...me and the cat. Ahh, memories!
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Old 05-29-17, 07:25 AM
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Much better than an E-bike!

Great video, thanks.
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Old 05-29-17, 08:53 AM
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I remember clearing a turn on a MUP. There's a jackass on his bike running a dog that's on the other side of the path. Between him and the dog is the leash 2 feet high off the ground. Forced me into the weeds to clear the leash and the dog. Just what I dream to run into every day.
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Old 05-30-17, 06:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Gyro View Post
I remember clearing a turn on a MUP. There's a jackass on his bike running a dog that's on the other side of the path. Between him and the dog is the leash 2 feet high off the ground. Forced me into the weeds to clear the leash and the dog. Just what I dream to run into every day.

Some MUPs are more suited to it than others. No one should be running a dog long distance on asphalt, if that's what the surface was. We've never had a problem or caused a problem on the C&O Canal -- essentially a one-lane dirt road with no sharp turns and a 15 mph speed limit.

Also helps that we go around sunrise and during winter we can do an entire run -- 5 or 6 miles -- without seeing anyone else.



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Old 05-30-17, 10:50 AM
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I've been passed by skijorers but have yet to see this in real life. If you ever visit the PNW maybe that'll change.
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Old 05-30-17, 12:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
I've been passed by skijorers but have yet to see this in real life. If you ever visit the PNW maybe that'll change.

I'm from Hood River so get out there occasionally.

Would love to get a team of Samoyeds fatbikejoring at Cannon Beach!



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