THE DOGS DID AWESOME! It is said that we, the mushers, are the weak link in the team and for me this was the case. I was one of three mushers who had their full team of dogs at the half-way check point, Iditarod. This photo is the dogs resting in Iditarod. Yes that is the Big Banana up front along with Flood, Fema, and Tug. The whole team did great on some very difficult trails during this race. Mother Nature rules, and she is not being kind to the teams this year.
After crossing a 20-mile stretch of tussocks (with NO snow) coming into the check point, the dogs were tired but I was disabled The hours of very rough trail has caused some trauma to the spine cage that I have in my back.
Eureka Lodge 156 Race: A new race was just organized and Vern and I are going to run two teams in it. It is unique in several ways: 2 days (Dec 31st & Jan 1st) with an out-and-back and a reverse order re-start repeating the same route on 2nd day, and you get to pick a special bib from a previous race and wear it. I have selected my Top of the World 350 Race bib. It was only run once (from Tok to Eagle Village and back) in honor of their tribal cheif who was killed in an accident. It ended on New Year’s Eve 2012.
A big thank you goes to Roni, owner and operator of Roni’s Chinook Deli and Pizza in Willow, AK. She is donating some of her amazing pizzas for my drop-bag food. There’s nothing like being on the trail and throwing a slice of pizza on the wood stove in a remote cabin.
NOTHING BUT THE BEST FOR THE DOGGIES: I just picked up 1700 pounds of human-grade salmon, beef heart, ground turkey, ground pork, and boneless chicken breasts and legs. A big THANKS goes toThree Bears Alaska – they sponsored the meat for my 2019 Iditarod. I tell people that those dogs eat better than most people – and they do!