Yes, we are.
Our house is slightly over a mile from Taughannock Falls State Park, and the 215 foot drop of the renown falls of the same name. Just last fall, the state parks opened the Black Diamond Trail, which runs very close to our house.
The pups and I hike three to five miles nearly every day. When it’s fall, winter or early spring, pack hiking is in order. When it’s warm, I carry what we need.
We’ve been racking up miles to earn various titles and meet a 2017 1,000 mile challenge posted on the website ILoveToRun. One of my Akita friends (human, not dog!) told me about this. We’re 30% done as of today!
To boot, the pups have accrued several hiking/pack hiking titles. Kiyo and Toka got mail yesterday, which included some pretty fancy ribbons.
And earlier in the week, Toka received a stack of titles from Dog Scouts of America. We’ve been working on his trail and pack dog titles through that organization, too.
I like the flexibility these two organizations give. They clearly outline the requirements for each title, and by following those at your own pace (another hiking joke!), keeping track of accrued mileage, and having fun with your dogs, it’s “easy” to earn titles.
Information about the Appenzeller pack dog title can be found by clicking here. And information about the DSA trail and pack dog titles can be found here. Kiyo is featured on their hiking/pack dog page. We’re standing at the bottom of Taughannock.
(Can’t wait for DSA to roll out their two-, three- etc! mile titles. We’re already working on those.)