Navigating a pack of up to ten powerful dogs on a sledge while racing through dense forests and open plains is one of the most exhilarating winter outdoor experiences Hokkaido has to offer.
There is terrain for all skill levels, with qualified tour operators for beginners particularly in the areas of Asahikawa and Furano. Even young children can enjoy a relaxing tour with an experienced attendant.
You can learn how to assemble a sled team and pick your own leader dogs. For those who would rather watch – Hokkaido hosts several races from sprints to long distance. The biggest one is the Japan Cup National Dogsled Race, which is held on the northern tip of Hokkaido, in Wakkanai. The teamwork between some of Japan's best dogsled racers and their furry friends in this harsh terrain makes a truly thrilling spectacle.