Annnnnddddd, they’re off!

Photo courtesy  Joel Forsman via GQ
Photo courtesy
Joel Forsman via GQ

The Iditarod is on! Mushers took off today from Willow, starting at 2 pm Alaska Time (6 pm Eastern). “Just” 42 miles to the next checkpoint at Yentna. Current temperature in the area is 24 degrees Fahrenheit, with a 62% chance of snow.

Ever wonder what a musher eats? Check out GQ’s article about Larry Daugherty, who is on his fourth quest for Iditarod gold.

A sample from the Q&A style article:
When you’re mushing, you’re responsible for feeding both yourself and the 14 dogs. How do you juggle that? I’ve heard the dogs need roughly 10,000 calories a day when they’re racing.

On the Iditarod trail, I eat when the dogs eat. The dogs primarily eat beef and fish. That’s also how the dogs get a lot of their water content, because the protein is frozen, and we essentially make a goulash for them by heating snow until it’s melted and boiling. I cook their food in that. They usually eat four times a day. At that point, it’s easiest for me to heat vacuum-sealed meals for myself. Things like shepherd’s pie, pasta, and soup. I’m focused more on the dogs’ nutrition on the trail.

Good luck to all the mushers!

Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!

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