The race that follows you to the finish.
Amundsen Mid Scandinavian Sled Dog Race is a well organized event which is easy to enter for mushers and handlers and interesting for the general public and sponsors. The race is challenging for rookie as well as experienced mushers. Your travel on the trail is framed by a welcoming and friendly atmosphere. Happiness!
The trail goes mainly in forest terrain, swamps and hill side in the municipality of Strömsund. For the general public it is possible to follow the race from close by during the start, in the checkpoints and at the finish lines in Tåsjö (180km) and Strömsund (350km). The start area at Hembygdsgården, next to the beautiful and known Strömsund bridge, is a beautiful and public friendly location. It is our hope that it will be an annual party for all!
Amundsen race over the years.
Throughout the years, Jämtland has had numerous succesful long distance mushers, but there was no long distance race in the region after Offerdal race was closed Down in the beginning of 2000. From that time on, the Swedish mushers had to drive to Norway to compete. Since that time interest in long distance racing in Sweden has been growing. In 2006 a group of enthusiasts gathered with the aim to develop longdistance racing in Sweden. The idea of a Swedish-Norwegian race found realm.
Nisse Uppström, Peter Edelbrock and Johnny Nääs were some of the initiators of Amundsen Draghundklubb which in 2008 organized the first running of Amundsen Race, a 400 km race from Östersund in Sweden to Röros in Norway. The impressive mass start of 80 teams was held on the big lake of Östersund and the race had from the beginning Swedish Championship status. Amundsen Race’ trail was going from Östersund to Röros over the period of 3 years and was in that time part of the EU-project Scandinavian Heartland.
In advance of the 2011 race, the organization decided to keep the race solely in Sweden. The start was still held on the ice of Östersunds big lake and the mushers drove over the beautiful mountain ridges of Jämtland, first to Ljungdalen, then over to Tänndalen, to continue over Helags and Sylarna towards Ånn, to finish in Åre. The weather was very tough. It was a weekend of heavy storms and it made it impossible to drive over the mountains. At the last moment, the trail had to be changed significantly in order to keep the race going.
In 2012, the weather gods were not on the side of the race either. Warm temperatures had deteriorated the condition of the ice profoundly and the organization was forced to cancel the race. It was a difficult decision, but the only sensible one.
Two years of setbacks made the raceorganization evaluate the race, looking for solutions to make the race less dependable upon weather. After debating new ideas and input, the ‘new’ Amundsen –Mid Scandinavian Sled Dog Race was born, this time under the wings Jämtlandsfjällens slädhundklubbs and in cooperation with Strömsunds municipality.
The vision is to create a race that appeals to rookies as well as the elite, which in addition should be easy accessible for musher, handler and general public in an area with good trail system and stabile snow conditions. The location became Strömsund and the start took place at Hembygdsgård on 23 February 2013. The result of this new initiative overseeded expectations with international entries of world class. Both in 2014 and 2015 Strömsund was the main location of the race. In 2016 and 2017, due to lack of snow and poor ice condition the race was re-located to Stroåbränna. In 2018 we came back to Strömsund, however now with direction towards Norråker and back to Strömsund. The town of Strömsund is always an important center of the race as it hosts both the registration, veterinary check and closing banquet.
Edit Summer 2022: With a new board and organisation team, after a 4 year absence (partly due to corona pandemic), we are happy and grateful to be able to look back at a successful re-start of the race with lots of positive feedback from the mushers, handlers, the crew and the local audience that came to the start and checkpoints to cheer on the contestants. The amazing weather and northern lights were a great bonus and made the race an unforgettable experience for both participants and volunteers.
Obviously we learned a lot after last year’s edition, which we take with us and hope to do even better in 2023. Especially for the priceless volunteers we hope to provide better circumstances (more hands on deck, better schedules) to make the experience great fun again, but this time with a little more rest! 😉
So…..we are excited and hope to see both familiar and new faces on the starting line. SO MUCH LOOKING FORWARD TO AMUNDSEN RACE 2023!