We are delighted to announce a very unique partnership between Ballathie House Hotel and the Scottish Sleddog Academy. The Academy will be based at Ballathie, making use of the Hotel, the Musher Lodge and the magnificent ancient forests on the Ballathie Estate.
Alan and Fiona Stewart founded the Cairngorm Sleddog Centre in
2001, which is the only Centre of its kind in the UK and only one
of five in Europe.
22 years ago, Alan bought his first Siberian Husky, found a
passion for the breed and now has over 37 working Alaskan Huskies
at his home in the Cairngorms. He has raced at the highest
level in the UK, and has also taken his K9 athletes all over the
world to race many times - Europe, USA, Chile and Argentina.
In 2009 Alan took on a unique challenge and is, to date, the
only Musher to have taken a team of Sleddogs over Ben Macdui (the
2nd highest mountain in the UK) in mid winter.
Alan is modest in his achievements, "..it is a privilege to
spend time with my dogs, they are the main players in our life. Our
way of life is 24/7 and is no dress rehearsal - it is not a hobby
nor is it a dream come true, it's just what we do. All the hard
work we have done over the years has paid off."
Fiona is the backbone, of the team and is responsible for all
the daily chores that come with looking after a kennel full of
Huskies that need to be kept at peak competition fitness. Medical,
feed regimes and the welfare of each and every dog is a priority to
ensure optimum performance. Fiona also looks after the puppies and
the retired racing dogs, and needless to say looks after Alan
Although the Cairngorm Sleddog Centre is a great success, Alan
has recognised the importance of preparing dogs for the high level
racing that he does all over the world. Young dogs (aged 3 - 7
years old) need to experience travelling and racing on new ground,
thus the creation of the Scottish Sleddog Academy.
The Ballathie Estate has proven to be the ideal location, and
offers guests at Ballathie the unique opportunity to experience
Sleddog racing without having to travel to the Highlands.
Fiona commented that the enthusiasm she was met with, when they
first approached Ballathie to discuss the project was infectious.
Lin Mitchell, Sales and Marketing Director commented "At Ballathie,
we are thrilled to be working alongside one of the greatest experts
in the racing Sleddog world and delighted to be able to offer our
guests this very special experience, certainly one which will be
etched on memories forever. The sight of these fabulous dogs
training throughout the Ballathie Estate is magnificent, to think
we are playing our part in their success is marvelous"
For further information on our Sleddog Experience Packages, click here.