Tag Archives: mushing

Iditarod Starts in 18 Days!

2021 Iditarod Race Map, courtesy Iditarod.com
2021 Iditarod Race Map, courtesy Iditarod.com

Although today the race could be held in Texas, The Iditarod will, as always, be held in Alaska, starting on March 7th. However, they have made some significant changes due to COVID-19. Here’s the scoop:

The Iditarod Trail Committee confirmed that both the restart and the finish of the Last Great Race on Earth will take place at Deshka Landing. The decision was mutually made by the Iditarod and the Willow Area Community Organization due to concern for COVID-19 risk mitigation at the Willow Area Community Center, which is also undergoing construction projects on facilities regularly utilized by the Iditarod.

Deshka Landing, located approximately 7.5 road miles from Willow Lake, serves as a year-round access point to the Lower Susitna Drainage consisting of the Susitna River, Deshka River, Yentna River, Alexander Creek and all tributaries. This change for the 2021 race, along with the Iditarod Golden Trail Loop race route, further allows race organizers to safely execute and continue to protect the communities along the trail, the mushers, volunteers and Iditarod personnel. Continue reading Iditarod Starts in 18 Days!

Nerd Out Piece About Sled Dog Feet

Photo:  Iditarod.com
Photo: Iditarod.com

I know many people worry about the health and welfare of sled dogs during long races like the Iditarod. Here’s an interesting (if you’re a nerd like me) article about how these dogs’ feet can withstand being in snow and ice for nine days, written by the Iditarod’s veterinarians.

A penguin, a sled dog, and a manatee walk into a diner…

Well, maybe not. But even if they don’t frequent the same restaurants, they do share similar adaptations that help them overcome the challenges of life in cold environments. Continue reading Nerd Out Piece About Sled Dog Feet

Saturday Survey: Iditarod

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Exxon Mobile just announced they are pulling their sponsorship of the Iditarod after this year, citing the economic state of the world right now. PETA is applauding this as an animal rights victory. Race officials, meanwhile, cite the number of volunteer veterinarians who attend to the dogs throughout their journey.

My humble opinion, formed by watching the race from afar, is that the dogs appear to be having a great deal of fun.

What say you?

What is your take on the Iditarod?

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Until next time,
Good day and good dog!

Yukon Quest Follow-up

I just realized I never let you know that the Yukon Quest is officially over.

The Yukon News reports that Alaskan musher Olivia Webster is the 2020 Yukon Quest’s red lantern, crossing the finish line in Whitehorse at approximately 8 p.m. on Feb. 15. The rookie is the granddaughter of Leroy Shank, one of the founders of the Yukon Quest, who was at the finish line to show his support.

The “red lantern” indicates the last musher to cross the finish line. Until that team comes in, a red lantern remains lit at the finish line to guide the mushers home.

Congratulations to all who participated.

Next up: the granddaddy of them all: the Iditarod! It begins with a ceremonial start on March 7th, followed by the real start on March 8th. I can’t wait!

Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!

Yukon Quest 2020 Leaderboard as of 2/11 @ 3:00pm EST

Here are the top five mushers in the Yukon Quest this afternoon.  All times shown are Alaska Standard Time (four hours behind EST)

Brent Sass passed mile marker 959.3 at 10:51 am
Michelle Phillips passed mile marker 936.7 at 10:50 am
Cody Strathe passed mile marker 883.2 at 8:04 am
Allen Moore passed mile marker 883.22 at 10:01 am
Torsten Kohnert passed mile marker 852.8 at 10:48

Sass is traveling at 4.4 miles per hour, so he may finish overnight!

Yukon Quest 2020 Leader Board as of 2/9/2020 @ 8:30 PM (Eastern)

With all the excitement of Westminster, I almost forgot about the Yukon Quest. https://www.yukonquest.com

They left Fairbanks on February 1st. Here’s where the top five mushers are

(All times are Alaska Standard – 4 hours behind Eastern Standard)
Brent Sass passed mile marker 764.5 at 2:28 PM
Michelle Phillips passed mile marker 764.5 at 3:35 PM
Cody Strathe passed mile marker 736.1 at 5:00 PM
Allen Moore passed mile marker 705.5 at 4:20 PM
Torsten Kohnert passed mile marker 681.6 at 4:24 PM

I’ll try to update daily.

Iditarod 2020 Needs Volunteers

Photo courtesy Iditarod Trail Committee
Photo courtesy Iditarod Trail Committee

The Greatest Dog Sled Race on Earth, the grandaddy of them all, the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race is looking for volunteers for the 2020 race. Volunteers start working in January and some of the tasks take place next June, so there is plenty of time to sync up your volunteer job with your vacation from your regular job. Continue reading Iditarod 2020 Needs Volunteers

FINAL Iditarod 2018 Results

Burled ArchThe top 20 racers have passed under the burled arch, with Joar Leifset Ulsom taking the win. He took 9 days and 12 hours to complete the 998 mile trek.

In second place, Nicolas Petit finished in 9 days, 14 hours and 15 minutes, while Mitch Seavey crossed the finish line in 9 days, 17 hours and 11 minutes.

Ray Redington, Jr. was 4th, and Peter Kaiser was 5th.

Congratulations to all who competed!

Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!