Saturday, 26 January 2013

Sledging or Sledding?

Call it what you will (we call in sledging here near Manchester) but today, after last nights snowfall which left a blanket of snow approximately 12inches thick, we found the biggest hill in our local park and had a glorious afternoon. An afternoon filled with fun, lots of laughter and best of all it didn't cost us a penny, it was completely free!

Once the light began to fade, we returned home to mugs of hot chocolate, homemade soup and crusty bread. The girls had a warm bath to heat them up and we snuggled on the sofa in our PJ's under a blanket, perfect.

Now I thought I'd include some information regarding the history of sledding or sledging. My eldest asked the question so we 'Googled' it. Here are the results:

The word sled comes from the Middle English word “sledde” (a very old type of English that is so different from what we use today, you would have trouble recognizing it) which meant “slider.” And that’s exactly what it does! We use sleds during the winter because they move easily through ice and snow, and even rock and some grass in certain instances. We may think of sleds as just for fun, but sleds actually come from sleighs and sledges, which were used as far back as the medieval era in Europe for transporting goods and people. You may have noticed that in most pictures of Santa, his reindeer pull him through the night sky in a sleigh, but traditional sleighs were used for transporting people and were often drawn by horses or dogs. European explorers used sledges and sleighs to navigate their way through the Arctic and Antarctic, and in some colder Scandinavian countries sleighs and sledges were not only fast, they were exempt from tolls on roads and bridges and so became popular for moving sizable goods. Chilly places like the Arctic still have huskies pulling sleighs as an option for getting through the snow quickly! Sleds are shorter and lighter than a traditional sleigh or sledge, people realized that sliding through the snow was so fun, that it might be worth giving everyone a shot, even if they didn’t need to get anywhere! That’s where the sleds we know today come in.


  1. Really interesting, I didn't know that about it coming from th old English word . I would love to have seen the girls, I bet they had a whale of a time. The snow here has all but gone and I can't say I am sorry x

    1. Hi Fran, yes it surprised me too.

      The girls had lots of fun and all that fresh air definitely helped them sleep.

      Like you I'm glad the rain has arrived to was the white stuff away. Running in the slush is so much more difficult (yes I'm still doing the running programme).

      Bring on Spring I say xx