2009 News...if you haven't read's news to you!

Knik 200 Trail Report

Report from Harry Caldwell 12/30/09 - Mushers in the Knik 200 Sled dog race this weekend... After running over the race course today, as Race Marshall I have made the decision to reduce the team size to 12 dogs from 16 dogs.. Check our website for more info... Reason: Mostly overflow in a few areas of concern and our dogs safety.... Best trail ever though, its groomed all the way to Skwentan as of today.... Better than the LA freeway without cars...

2009 Gin Gin 200 Update

Wolverine Lodge, Alaska 12/30/09 - It's minus 10 in Glennallen this morning with a light fog. The Gin Gin 200 mushers are rolling in to Wolverine Lodge. Mushers and handlers are gathered around the cafe chattering about their time on the trails. Twenty one mushers have officially completed the 2010, 200 mile sled dog race. Mihelle Phillips arrived tuesday evening, placing first in the women's division, with Abbie West placing second an hour and sixteen minutes behind her. Musher Maren Bradley taking thrid. In the men's division, Lance Mackey was the first to arrive into Wolverine Lodge finishing at 6:48 pm tueday evening. Brent Sass placed second at 8:06 pm tuesday, in thrid was Josh Cadzow. For complete race results click here

Skijour with a friend?

by Chris and " Keyli"

GIN GIN 200 Heats Up!

Temperatures may have settled to minus 12 last night along the Maclaren River but that didn't stop some hot mushers from moving full steam ahead on the Gin Gin 200 this year. In the womens division Abbie West controls the lead , Michelle Phillips is hot on her trail with only seven minutes separating the two of them. Musher Zoya DeNure is in thrid place arriving into Maclaren River Lodge with one dog in her basket. If Abbie can keep her lead, we could have a finisher in the women's division sometime around 8:28 this evening.

In the men's division, it's Lance Mackey in the lead. The 2008 Gin Gin champion, Brent Sass, is holding 2nd to the 3 time Iditarod champion, Lance Mackey, with an hour and 28 minutes seperating them. Mushers Josh Cadzow and Jason Mackey are close behind Brent. Lance can leave Maclaren checkpoint at 7:50 am and judging from his run time into Maclaren River Lodge, he could finish sometime around 7:50 this evening. The rest of the pack in both the men's and the women's division has a big gap, leaving spectators to wonder just what is going on. Reports of heavy fog just 20 miles out of the Maclaren checkpoint may be the factor.

Click here for photos by Lisa Memmel - For complete race stats click here

Follow the Gin Gin 200 - Wolverine to Maclaren & Back!

The Gin Gin 200 is now underway. A 200 mile sled dog race from Wolverine Lodge near Glennallen, Alaska to Maclaren River Lodge located along the Denali Highway and back to Wolverine Lodge. Mushers left Wolverine Lodge in a mass start this morning, 10 mushers in the women's division took to their sleds at 11 am and 23 in the men's division jumped on their runners at high noon rooster tailing across Lake Louise.

All mushers must carry all the gear and dog food needed for the entire 200 mile sled dog race with the exception of straw provided at Maclaren Lodge and meals that can be purchased at Maclaren Lodge.

Normally the race runs along the Denali Highway from paxson Lodge to Maclaren Lodge with a 90 mile loop along the river bed. Trails conditions this year were poor on many sections of the highway making it unsafe for teams to cross. Trail coordinator, John Schandelmier said "it was just too wind blown and mushers have had problems routinely in that area in years past".

An eight hour mandantory layover will be at Maclaren Lodge, the halfway point of the race. Temperatures are expected to drop down to zero tonight with calm winds and heavy fog. The first mushers are expected into Maclaren Lodge sometime around midnight tonight with a finish sometime tommrow evening around 8 or 9 pm. Stay tuned for updates throughout the race.

For race stats - click here

Knik 200 on as Scheduled

THE KNIK 200 WILL BE ON as scheduled! All of the race paper work and entries were lost in the Braden's house fire. The race entries and purse will be donated to Kit Bradens.

All you mushers, lets give Bruce a huge send off and help Kit out by running in this year Knik 200... If your not a musher, then please volunteer or donate what you can, lets show Kit that in dark & tragic times that there is a sparkling gleam of light.... Pass the word gang! For questions, sign ups and sign up confirmations please call Harry Caldwell 907-373-1300

House Fire in Mat-Su Claims Life of Volunteer Knik 200 Race Coordinator

December 22, 2009 Knik, Alaska - Many of you will know the names Kit and Bruce Braden from the Knik 200 sled dog race, their home in Knik burned down last night. Kit escaped but is in the hospital and their dogs are fine but Bruce was killed in the fire. More info as it becomes available. Read more from KTUU Ch2...

Cim Smyth Wins the Alaska Excursions 120

Willow musher, Cim Smyth has won the Alaska Excurions 120 by a mere 3 minutes over second place finisher Paul Gebhardt. Such a close finish always has fans jumping with excitement, today was no exception. Spectators and mushers are raving about the new Alaska Excursions 120 and how well organized it is. Congraulations go to Ryan & Erin Redington for putting on a first class sled dog race.
Final Race results click here

The Alaska Excursions 120 Race Updates

December 19 2009 - Knik, Alaska - Ryan Redington leads the way on the Alaska Excursions Sled Dog Race tonight,covering a distance of 46 miles this evening. Paul Gebhardt (2nd), Ray RedingtonJr (3rd), Cim Smyth (4th) Dean Osmar (5th) & Martin Buser (6th) clipping at his heels. One musher, bib #40, listed as "Isla" was disqualified for taking the wrong trail. Weather forecast: Cloudy with a chance of snow. Lows zero to 5 above. East wind 10 to 15 mph For Race stats click here (PDF)

Copper Basin 300 Purse $12,000

December 18, 2009 - Glennallen, Alaska - After doing some hard figuring, the Copper Basin 300 Board has decided on a minimum amount for the 2010 race. The Board decided on $12,000. Like lots of races in the state, donations are not rolling in. Those who have generously donated, we can't thank you enough. The CB300 race is a 100% volunteer organization. The race relies on musher entrants to beef up the purse. The focus of this organization is to provide mushers of all caliber the opportunity to race through some of the most amazing, and toughest, terrain Alaska has to offer, on a well marked and safe trail. So, if you have been wondering what you should do with your free time the second weekend in January, why not come on down, up, or over to Glennallen and try your hand at the "Toughest 300 Miles". We look forward to seeing you! Registration is January 8th at the Legion Hall in Glennallen. Race start is January 9th in front of KCAM in Glennallen.Visit the Copper Basin 300 web site for more information....

Important Updates on the Gin Gin 200

December 18, 2009: it's Official as of today! The Gin Gin 200 will start/end at Wolverine Lodge this year. Mass Start for women at 11am and men at noon. 8 hr mandatory break at Maclaren Lodge. Click here for more details (PDF)

The Alaska Excursios 120

Knik, Alaska - A grand new sled dog race hits the circut this weekend and it's bringing in a good crowd of mushers .The Alaska Excursions 120 will be held on December 19th and 20th, 2009. On day one, mushers will start in order of sign up. There is a guaranteed minimum purse of $4000 to be paid out to the top 5 adults (awards for the top 3 juniors, TBA). Musher Listing (Current as of 12/15/2009):
1. Kathy Frederick-Willow 2. Varan Hoyt-Wasilla 3. Raymie Redington- Knik 4. Paul Gebhardt- Kasilof 5. Kristy Berington- Kasilof
6. Ryan Redington- Knik 7. Karin Hendrickson- Wasilla 8. Pam Aviza- Wasilla 9. Debbie Moderow- Anchorage 10. Jan Steves- 11. Ted English- Willow 12. Cook Inlet Kennels #1- Clam Gulch 13. Caleb Hathaway- Willow 14. Kelley Griffin- Wasilla 15. Alan Miller- Nenana
16. Rick Mackey- 17. Jane Faulkner- Soldotna 18. Ray Redington Jr.- Knik 19. Cim Smyth- Big Lake 20. Jesse Beebe- Knik 21. Bruce Linton- Kasilof 22. Brendon Johnson- Kasilof 23. Perry Solmonson- Nikiski 24. Jeff Deeter- Wasilla 25. Jason Mackey- Kasilof 26. Cook Inlet Kennels #2- Clam Gulch 27. Christina Roalofs- Anchorage 28. Kim Trickett- Willow 29. Richard Hum- Talkeetna 30. Tim Osmar- Kasilof
31. TBA 32. TBA 33. TBA 34. Meredith Mapes- Knik 35. Emily Krol- Knik 36. Marissa Osmar- Kasilo . Click here for trail & race updates

"Running with Spirits" the 2008 All Alaska Sweepstakes now on DVD!

Running with spirits
Husky Productions has released "Running with Spirits" just in time for Christmas. A DVD that celebrates the 100th year of the All Alaska Sweepstakes. Documenting the 2008 sled dog race from Nome to Candle and back. Familiar names like Jeff King, Mitch Seavey, Lance Mackey, Sonny Lindner, Hugh Neff, Cim Smyth, Ed Iten and 10 other mushers run this rough Alaskan race from the start on Nomes' Front street, with the crowds cheering and wishing each and every musher a safe journey to remote make shift checkpoints and back to Nome - a distance of 408 miles.

The All Alaska Sweepstakes was the first major long distance sled dog race in the world. With the 2008 centennial re-run of the All Alaska Sweepstakes Race, you can once again experience the excitement of the early history of the gold rush era in Alaska. This is a great stocking stuffer for any mushing fan.

Priced at $30 plus shipping
To order click here

Copper Basin 300
2010 Copper Basin 300 Updates

First of all, we would like to thank 3-time CB300 champ Allen Moore, former Quest champs Sonny Linder and Aliy Zirkle for signing up for the 2010 race. We have decided to run the race backwards this year so the weather has turned backwards on us. In general the eastern and southern portion of the Copper Basin has received greater snow fall than the northern and western areas. The trail in and out of Gakona and Chistochina is in good condition and there are no issues with hooking a team down. Read more....

IFSS 2009-2010 World Cup Series

Sign up now as an IFSS World Cup Event for 2009-2010! Winners qualify for IFSS 2011 World Championships in Norway!

What is IFSS World Cup?
The IFSS World Cup Series offers a worldwide ranking system for mushers. It provides opportunity for promotion of mushing and mushers and welcomes participation from race giving organizations (RGOs) in each class from all regions of the world.

2009-2010 World Cup and 2011 World Championships
Entry into the World Championship is in part based on a competitor’s World Cup ranking for the past year. The first three finishers in the 2010 World Cup in each class in each region will automatically be awarded a World Championship berth for the World Championship to be held in Norway in 2011. In addition, medalists in the 2009 IFSS World Championship in Daaquam (Canada) will be eligible to enter in the same class.

Each country is also entitled to three berths in each sprint and Nordic class in the 2010 World Championship in Norway. However, there is no limit to the number of entries into the  mid-distance and long distance classes. Criteria for selection of the teams is up to each IFSS National Federation (IF). Mushing USA has set World Cup ranking as part of its criteria for Team USA 2011 Norway. In addition, each country will be able to enter one Nordic Purebreed team in each class.

IFSS, together with the 2011 host, the Norwegian Sleddog Federation (NHF), will also be offering  travel money to help defray costs for those competitors traveling from overseas to Norway.

South America has already staged its Continental Championships in both dryland and snow, and snow races are around the corner in the northern hemisphere. Offer your USA mushers a part of the action in Norway!

Sign up now for 2009-2010 IFSS World Cup! Visit the IFSS website at for the World Cup application and information.


Anchorage, Alaska – December 5, 2009 - In another reflection of our economic times, during the past 12 months the Iditarod Trail Committee has experienced a loss in funding of nearly $1 million dollars. In late 2008, one media partnership and one significant reduction in sponsorship totaling $485,000 impacted the race. The top thirty finishers in the 2009 race felt the affect as prize money was reduced by $300,000, down from $925,000.

This past June the Iditarod Trail Committee (ITC) adopted an annual operating budget with cuts in spending of $319,000, most of which were in the form of personnel costs. More recently, additional cuts exceeding $200,000 have been made to reflect the loss of the media partnership and modifications to ITC’s Insider Video on Demand project.

Within the past month, one other media partnership and two sponsorship deals were not renewed, totaling an additional loss of $455,000 in revenues. The ITC will make additional cuts to personnel and various other areas of the budget, including a $100,000 reduction in the 2010 prize money. “We are not immune from the economic turmoil that is impacting many of our partners,” said Stan Hooley, Executive Director of ITC. “I think there is the perception that we are on solid ground, but the truth is, at this moment in time we aren’t where we need to be. We have 100 days until we get underway for the 38th time. I’m optimistic that between now and then we will be able to welcome some new companies to our current family of dedicated sponsors. There isn’t a better time in our recent history for a sponsorship to be have a significant impact and be sincerely appreciated by those who are passionate about this race,” added Hooley. “One thing we know for sure is that excitement about the Iditarod remains at an all-time high and
we will stage the world’s premier sled dog race in March,” said Lee Larsen, President of the ITC Board of Directors. “To all of our race fans who have supported this race, this year more than ever, we need your support by attending our banquets, subscribing to our online Insider Video on Demand and GPS Tracker services, purchasing raffle tickets and some of our great 2010 race merchandise. I look forward to the day that we can look back at this point in time and understand that these difficult times helped to galvanize our organization and the mushing community,” added Larsen. Iditarod XXXVIII will begin in downtown Anchorage on Saturday, March 6, 2009 at 10:00 a.m. at the corner of 4th Avenue and D Street.


12/06/09 SHEEP MOUNTAIN, ALASKA - Poor snow conditions in the upper elevations of the Sheep Mountain 150 sled dog race have forced race director Zack Steer to cancel this year's race which was scheduled for December 12-13.

Although there is good snow cover on the ground near Sheep Mountain and Eureka Lodges, high winds over the last few days have removed most of the snow in the upper elevations of the nearby Talkeetna mountains. The Sheep Mountain 150 is not so much a competitive race as it is a tune-up and training race for teams as they prepare for longer races such as Yukon Quest or Iditarod. The goal of this race is to provide mushers with a well-marked, safe course for early season distance training and competition. Because of the hazardous conditions, the race will be cancelled. The race will not be rescheduled.

Steer says: "There is not enough snow to support 45 dogteams, especially on the downhill sections in the mountains. Mushers are not be able to control their dogteams without adequate snow to operate the sled brake. Safety for the dogs and the mushers is paramount to this race, and right now that is not possible"

For further information, please contact: Zack Steer Race Director, Sheep Mountain Mile 113.5 Glenn Highway Fax 907.745.5120 Toll Free 877-645-5121
Ph. 907.745.5121 Mailing address: 17701 W. Glenn Hwy Sutton, AK 99674

2010 Iditarod Rookies attend Mandantory Meeting

2010 Iditarod Rookie Mushers

12/05/09 ANCHORAGE, ALASKA- The 2010 Iditarod rookies were in Anchorage, Alaska this weekend attending a mandatory meeting for first time Iditarod mushers. Twenty three "Cheechakos" have signed up to race the 2010 Iditarod, which begins March 6 in downtown Anchorage. The rookie meeting is designed to help ease some of the anxiety typically associated with a race this size.The first day, seasoned mushers like DeeDee Jonrowe and Lance Mackey share their experiences and what works for them. Ways to organize your gear, what style sled runners work, how many do you go thorugh in a race, how to properly pack your sled so you are not wasting time dumping it out onto the snow looking for one item. Packing only what you need. Offering suggestions on what to send out to each check point and why with emphasis on the importance of making a race plan and allowing room for unexpected circumstances such as sick dogs or bad weather. Day two rookies head out to the kennel of Iditarod musher, Martin Buser, to get some hands on training. Martin will talk to the rookies about what to put in their drop bags, strategies on running, resting and feeding their dogs in a marathon race like the Iditarod. The entire weekend is open for questions and learning from those that have been there done that.

The Alaska Excursion 120

The Alaska Excursions 120 is still on for December 19-20, 2009. The Alaska Excursions should be a good race - Rick Mackey, Jason Mackey, Dean Osmar , DeeDee Jonrowe and Mike Jonrowe , Tim Osmar and his daughter, Joe Redington Jr., Ramie Redington, Ray Redington, Ryan Redington, Paul Gebhardt, Kelley Griffin, Alan Miller, Debbie Moderow, Kathy Frederick, Karin Henrickson , these are just a few of the teams racing, a total of 37 teams have signed up to date. The limit is 40 teams. It should be a great race. Sponsored by the Aurora Dog Mushers Association.

Sheep Mountain 150 Trail Conditions Improve!

Sheep Mountain Lodge - December 1. 2009 - Ok, Ok, you can stop the snow dance.... 14 inches of snow today and still falling. We will begin grooming trails wednesday (if it stops snowing) and report back ASAP. At this time I would revise my odds to 95% sure the race will happen. Final decision made no later than Sunday night. ~ Zack Steer ~

Cool Runnings: Jamaican Seeks Iditarod Glory

by December 1, 2009-
Jamaica and Iditarod are not two things you normally hear together. But Newton Marshall of the Jamaican dogsled team aims to change that. This week, Marshall starts training with three-time Iditarod champion Lance Mackey. Mackey says people initially didn't think Marshall had a chance, but he proved everyone wrong.

Alaska Sports Hall of Fame Adds A Few Familar Names to List

Lance and Dick Mackey
The Alaska Sports Hall of Fame announced today the Class of 2010. Lance Mackey, four time Yukon Quest Champion and three time Iditarod Champion, is one of those names. In addition, his father, Dick Mackey, will also be added to this elite group as one of the "moments" in Alaska sports, when Dick won the 1978 Iditarod, beating Rick Swenson by one second. Alaskans still talk about that great Iditarod race.

The other individuals include Native games champion-turned-state legislator Reggie Joule, Olympic snowboarding bronze medalist Rosey Fletcher, and the late Bradford Washburn, a leading mountaineer and pioneering photographer. The other moment to be enshrined is Elliot Sampson's victory in the 1981 all-school state cross country meet, when the Eskimo from Noorvik upset a future national champion in the indoor mile. The Midnight Sun Baseball Classic in Fairbanks is the honored event. For more information about the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame visit their web site - Click Here.

4 Time Iditarod Champion, Martin Buser aims to study canine CO2, heart rates & more!

Mile 101 will become a checkpoint for the 2010 Yukon Quest!

For the first time, Mile 101 will be a checkpoint of the Yukon Quest. This is in addition to the checkpoint at Two Rivers and 9 others including the Start and Finish for a total of 11 checkpoints for the 2010 race. Read more about Mile 101, the transformation and preparations for making it a Checkpoint and working with the Vet Team at Mile 101.Click here...

Quest Banquet Tickets
- Don't forget to get your Yukon Quest banquet tickets, they are going fast.The Start Banquet in Fairbanks will take place on Wednesday, February 3rd at the Carlson Center. Tickets are $60 US each and doors open at 5pm. Drop by our office in Fairbanks or call us at (907) 452-7954 to buy your tickets.

The Yukon Convention Centre will be hosting the Finish and Awards Banquet in Whitehorse, doors open at 5pm and tickets cost $75 CAD. Tickets are available at our office in Whitehorse, or call (867) 668-4711 for more information.

40 Mushers Set to Run Sheep Mountain 150

Sheep Mountain
A field of 40 teams have signed up for the 2009 Sheep Mountain 150 sled dog race. Entries are still being accepted until the race limit of 50 teams is full. The Sheep Mountain 150 is a 150-mile sled dog race to be held December 12-13, 2009. The race starts and finishes at Sheep Mountain Lodge at mile 113 of the Glenn Highway and has two, five-hour layovers at Eureka Lodge. Some of the race can be viewed directly from the highway and fans can watch and meet the mushers at the Eureka lodge checkpoint Saturday night.This year’s race features top distance mushers such as current Iditarod Champion Lance Mackey, Aily Zirkle, Paul Gebhardt and defending Sheep Mountain 150 Champion Jessica Hendricks. The race kicks off the beginning of the Alaska distance sled dog racing season and is now an official qualification race for Iditarod rookies.

Race updates will be posted This will be the best source for current race updates and final results. For more detailed information about the race please go to or contact Zack Steer, race director, at 907-745-5121.

Norman Vaughan Serum Run Changes Event Schedule

The Norman Vaughan Serum Run is now a biennial even,t running in the odd years, with the next event taking place in Feb. 2011. However, in the even years starting in Feb. 2010 we plan to hold a" Serum Run Boot Camp" for those interested in the Nenana to Nome Serum Run. The Serum Run is looking at holding the Serum Run Boot Camp on February 12- 15 (tentative dates), 2010 where interested mushers and snowmachiners can get a better idea of what the Serum ’25 Run is all about.

The trip is limited to 15 mushers and 25 snowmachiners. Serum Run veterans are encouraged to apply, but future, first-time Serum Runners will be given priority.For more information visit the Serum Run web site.

Mushing History Conference

The 2009 Mushing History Conference is bringing together an unprecedented gathering of authors, historians, researchers, writers, veteran mushers and supporters of the colorful history of sled dog travel. Presentations will cover the evolution of man's relationship with working sled dogs, including delivering the U.S. mail by dogteam, sled dog use in polar expeditions, the Centennial of the Iditarod National Historic Trail, Joe Redington's work with dogteams for the U.S. Army, trapline use of sled dogs in the North American fur trade, historic and present-day sled dog races, the early Nome author Esther Birdsall Darling, the evolution of sled dog nutrition and diets, the Iditarod Trail Committee's historical documentary about the race, and much more.
Click here for details

Party on with the Jamaica Dogsled Team in Toronto!


It's time to party with the Jamaican Dog Sled Team in Toronto on Thursday November 12, 2009 - 7 pm till midnight. Both Jamaican dog mushers (Damion and Newton) will be there as well as a host of other Jamaican Dog Team supporters.

There are great prizes and of course lots of fun - Caribbean style! Come out to support the team - you never might even end up with your own all-inclusive vacation to Jamaica! Tickets are $65. Proceeds to support the Jamaican Dog Sled Teams in their quest for success during the 2010 race season. Contact Tricia Ruddok at (416) 266-3462 or email her. --- Mush Mon


IFSS Announces Training Camp in Scandinavia 2010

Melbourne, Australia, October 15, 2009 – The International Federation of Sleddog Sports (IFSS) has announced that a designated amount of money will be allocated for 12 people from IFSS member federations to attend a training camp to develop their abilities and the sleddog sport in their country and region. Only one person from each federation will be accepted. All transportation and accommodations will be paid for by the joint contributions of IFSS and the Scandinavian national federations, Norges Hundejörerforbund (NHF) and Svenska Draghundsportförbundet (SDSF).

For 10 days, from 26 February to 7 March, 2009, 12 individuals will have an exciting opportunity to participate in an extensive training course, emphasizing Nordic pulka and skijoring but also including training with Nome sled, to take place in Norway and Sweden. Participants will first travel to Mora, Sweden, on February 26th and then go on to Orsa Hamar, Norway, March 4th to compete in the Trail World Championships.

The purposes of the camp are two-fold: (1) to help improve abilities of international competitors who wish to compete in the IFSS World Championships in Norway in 2011 and (2) to educate and train people who can teach others in their home country or region. Practice and theory will be taught with particular emphasis on skiing technique, waxing material and organization and cooperation in sleddog sports. The training leaders will be Ulla-Kari Pontén of Sweden, who will lead in Nordic; Malin Sundin, who will instruct in long distance sled; Sara Sundin, trainer for Nordic and sled; and Bengt Pontén, IFSS president who will work with Nordic skills. Present will also be several instructors from the local sled dog club in Sweden and the Ski College in Mora.

Prospective applicants are invited to apply by requesting application form and materials from Darren Watson, IFSS Vice President for Development ( or Sally O’Sullivan Bair, IFSS Secretary General ( Completed applications must be received by IFSS (Darren Watson) no later than November 7, 2009, so that the selection process can be completed and selected participants will have time to make appropriate arrangements.

Live Streaming Audio of the International Sled Dog Symposium

October 8th, 2009 - Sponsored by GCI and Sled Dog Studio.Theater presentations at this year’s symposium will again be streamed on the Internet. The link to listen to the stream will be Once there, click on the “Listen” link in the top menu bar. Prior to the symposium and during some breaks, a stream of past sessions will be playing intermittently; during the symposium sessions, the stream will be live.

Paint the Rink Pink!

DeeDeee Jonrowe
It's the annual Paint the Rink Pink Anchorage Aces game – breast cancer awareness night. DeeDee had the honor to drop the puck for start of the event. The Aces v. Kalamazoo, proceeds will benefit Breast Cancer Focus, Inc! The Aces will once again wear commemorative pink jerseys that will be auctioned off following the October 8th game, and both teams will play on Sullivan Arena ice dyed pink in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month. DeeDee said "it was a fun way to get awareness out about a horrable disease" - join in the fight!

To learn more about DeeDee Jonrowe, visit her web site at

Torch River Run - Iditarod Qualifier

The Torch River Run will start on March 3 and finish March 6, 2010.  It will be ran as an Iditarod qualifier, but will not be a qualifier this year.  It will be a “points race” for Ma Mow We Tak members. Race officials want to keep the race as simple as possible; therefore it will be a wilderness race.  The Torch River Run will run approximately 200 miles with no more than 10 and no less than 8 dogs, and must finish with no fewer than 5 dogs in harness and on the towline. Read more...

3 Time Iditarod Champion joins up with the Livestrong Foundation

LIVESTRONG Day is a global day of action to inspire people to join in the global fight against cancer in communities around the world, inspired by Livestrong chairman and founder, Lance Armstrong. Following Lance Armstrong's diagnosis of advanced testicular cancer on October 2, 1996, before he knew whether he would survive, Lance started his foundation to fight cancer and help others affected by the disease. This year, LIVESTRONG Day was on October 2 to demonstrate that each person can make a difference in the cancer fight.

3 time Iditarod & 4 time Yukon Quest champion, Lance Mackey spent the day in Anchorage, Alaska visting various locations including The Alaska Club, The Skinny Raven, Providence Cancer Center and The Native Medical Center, supporting the Livesrong Day. Lance said " It's so important to unite in this fight. Cancer effects all of us". With tears in his eyes Lance spoke to a crowd at the Anchorage Bicyle Shop about his battle with cancer and stressed to those dealing with the disease to fight with an attitude.

It’s the day members of every community celebrate survivorship and raise awareness about the fight against cancer in communities across the globe. Visit the Livestrong web site for more information.


Gin Gin 200 & Taiga 300 have new starting dates

The new starting date for the Gin Gin 200 has been rescheduled for Dec. 28th, 2009, same time, same place. Race coordinator, Zoya DeNure says "Our checkpoint, Maclaren River Lodge has been booked for their New Years Eve party, 40 some snow machines plus a firework display party. As a race organization, we have discussed all of our options and considered all the safety factors involved---and we feel this is the next best thing we can do without having to do a route change".

Please note the Taiga 300 date changes as well. The new Taiga 300 starting date will take place on Feb. 18th 2010, starting and ending at Wolverine Lodge. Contact Zoya DeNure for more information at 907-347-9013

IFSS Seeks Bids for 2013 Winter World Championships

Monticello, Minnesota USA, October 1, 2009 – The International Federation of Sleddog Sports (IFSS) is seeking bids to host the 2013 IFSS Winter World Championship. IFSS Winter World Championships are generally held in the winter of the year over a 2-week period.

Interested parties are encouraged to apply through their respective National Federation, which will forward the bid to IFSS. Deadline for bids to be submitted to IFSS is August 1, 2010. The final decision rests with the IFSS Council, which will make its decision no later than 30 days after the 2010 IFSS General Assembly, scheduled for September, 2010. Winter World Championships include classes in Nordic style and Nome (sled) sprint, long distance and mid-distance. IFSS prefers that all events be located in the same general area.

Interested applicants are also invited to make a presentation to the 2010 IFSS General Assembly. However, this is not required. The timing of the final decision is to allow the accepted bidder to come to the 2011 IFSS World Championships in Norway to observe and gain information regarding hosting such an auspicious event.

Interested applicants are requested to send a Letter of Intent, specifying the place and tentative dates and main contact information, to IFSS Secretary General Sally O’Sullivan Bair (email:; tel: +1 763 295 5465 – in the USA) by June 1, 2010. For questions and information regarding the contents that must be contained in the bid, please contact IFSS Secretary General Bair.

Major Sled Dog Organizations to Hold Unification Talks in Sweden

Borlänge, Sweden, September 29, 2009 – Kiruna, Sweden, in the latitudes of northern Sweden, will play host to talks between the major international organizations in sled dog sports. Bengt Pontén, President of the International Federation of Sleddog Sports (IFSS), Lars Svanfeldt, President of the European Sled Dog Racing Association (ESDRA), and Dave Steele, Executive Director of the International Sled Dog Racing Association (ISDRA), will meet together the weekend of 2-4 October in Kiruna to discuss aspects of the unification process proposed by the major players in the sport.

The process, outlined in a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and signed by the organizations in late 2008, has as its goal the merger into one international governing organization for sled dog sports to better serve the sled dog community worldwide. Although the process involves many steps and is due to take a few years until completion, the parties involved are optimistic that a positive result can eventually come. Commented IFSS President Pontén: “Each organization brings strong accomplishments and has contributed in a major way to the development of the sport, but it is time to come together into one worldwide organization that will better advance the whole sport and diffuse the current rifts that exist.” 

Already each organization has completed an analysis of its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats – SWOT) and a tentative model of what a bona fide international organization could look like. However, there is still much work to be done. After the organizations’ leaders reach tentative agreement on a structure, there will follow a period of public comment before final approval can be made.


Copper Basin 300 Makes Changes

written by Heidi Sutter

The Copper Basin 300 board has been hard at work, meeting over the past two months getting another awesome race together. This year there are some exciting changes.

  • The race course has been changed this year. The race will begin in Glennallen, in front of KCAM radio station. The race will then head WEST along the highway to Tolsona (the way the race finished in 2006). The race will continue along in a clockwise direction around the route. Once back in Glennellen, the trail will loop behind Glennallen along the firebreak trail (the route used in last year's race to bypass Glennallen.) The race will end at Tolsona Lodge. Currently we are planning to cut out the following trail section: the run up the Denali Highway, down the bank, across Summit Lake, across the highway and down the pipeline. Instead we will cross at 1 Mile Creek. (This is the reroute of 2007.) The race will go directly East to the Gakona River from there. This should give the race right at 300 miles.
  • The mandatory time this year has also been changed. There will be an 8 hour mandatory plus start differential lay over taken at any checkpoint. The remaining 10 hours of mandatory time can be taken at any checkpoint in half hour increments. This is a change from last years rules of 12 additional hours of mandatory time.
  • The entry fee has increased to $400. The fee increases to $450 past December 31.

Be sure to sign up early!!This year's race starts on Saturday the 9th of January in front of KCAM in Glennallen. Race check-in starts Friday the 8th from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM at Race Central (The American Legion). The race drawing and Musher's meeting will be held at the Brownbear Rhodehouse at 5:30PM on Friday the 8th of January. The 2010 race will run clockwise around the route from Glennallen, finishing at Tolsona Lake.

The Copper Basin 300 web site has been recently updated. Be sure to check it often for trail reports and race information as we draw closer to race day.

A fun CB300 factoid: both the Yukon Quest and Iditarod Champions had numerous teams in the Copper Basin last year.

The Copper Basin 300 Board looks forward to seeing you on race day!

Willow Dog Mushers Host 2nd Annual Symposium


Denali Doubles Invitational Sled Dog Race

A sled dog race like no other. The Denali Double has mushers chattering and old timers cheering. It's all about the gee pole. There is a 20 team limit to this unique sled dog race to be held in Cantwell, Alaska.The race will be approximately 264 miles running from Cantwell to Maclaren River Lodge and back to Cantwell. Two mushers per ‘team’ (Tandem sleds, gee pole sled, sled and skier) 16 dogs maximum per team. be eligible, one musher of each team must have placed in the top 5, or receiveda Humanitarian award or have been awarded Rookie of the year in any dog sled race prior to sign up. Entries will be accepted after 10 am November 1st 2009 by fax or mail. Rules will be published on-line by Oct.1st. Race will start thursday, February 11th 2010. Contact Jeff King for more information. Visit Jeff Kings web site for details.

2009 Gin Gin Sign-up Begins

The Gin Gin 200 is one of the first distance races of the season and an official Iditarod qualifier. It is a 200 mile sled dog race from Paxson Lodge to MaClaren River Lodge and back, following closely along the Denali Highway through some of the most beautiful and often bone chilling Alaskan back country you could imagine. This year, 10 mushers have already signed up for the challenge. MUSHERS: Ava Linder, Colen Robertia, Zoya DeNure, JR Kennel (handler) Peter Fleck, Braxton Peterson, Cain Carter,Sonny Linder, Newton Marshall and Lance Mackey .For more information or to sign up visit the Gin Gin 200 web site.

Newton Marshall named "Sports Ambassador" for Jamaica

After placing 13th in the Yukon Quest, Newton Marshall has qualified to compete in the 2010 Iditarod, a grueling 1000+ mile race across Alaska! Newton will be training for the next eight months under three-time Iditarod and four-time Yukon Quest champion Lance Mackey in Fairbanks, Alaska. But that’s not all Newton has to be proud of…he was just appointed the new Sports Ambassador for Jamaica! CONGRATULATIONS NEWTON!! Go to their web site to learn more about Newton Marshall and the Jamaican team.

Martin Buser goes to Norway

Four time Iditarod Champion, Martin Buser was invited to speak at the annual HAKADAL SEMINAR near Oslo, Norway September 5 & 6.Martin showed his video of "walking" 20 adult dogs off leash. He discussed the efficiencies in kennel operations and his racing philosophy. Below is a short clip of his time there.


Four Time Iditarod Champion Jeff King Sprints to Fur Rondy!

Distance musher Jeff King, known for his racing in the Iditarod and the Yukon Quest, now looks to add the legendary Fur Rendezvous World Championship to his list of accomplishments. The Fur Rondy, held in February in Anchorage, Alaska is one of the most exciting sprint races in North America. Jeff said "Running the Rondy has long been a goal of mine and will be a welcome challenge, giving me the ultimate experience in sprint racing. I am beyond excited and am shopping for Spandex."

Fur Rondy Trailer 2010 from susan l trussell on Vimeo.


14 Mushers Sign Up for 2010 Yukon Quest!

4 time Yukon Quest Champion, Lance Mackey is back for the 2010 Yukon Quest. Lance was one of the first to sign up for the 2010 Yukon Quest. After sitting out last years race Lance said "It's good to be back. I am looking forward to this years challenges." Fourteen mushers are signed up to date. The line up includes veteran musher Ken Anderson, Zack Steer, Normand Casavant, Mike Ellis and Becca Moore. This years rookies are Jennifer (Brown) Raffaeli, Abbie, Cindy Barrand, Peter Fleck and Katie Davis.

Yukon Quest Appoints New Executive Director

August 7, 2009 (Fairbanks, Alaska) - The Board of Directors in Alaska for the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race are pleased to announce the appointment of Marti Steury as the new Executive Director in Fairbanks.

“The Board's near-term priorities for the Executive Director are growing local and international partnerships, building sponsorship relations and ensuring fiscal responsibility,” said Julie Estey, Acting President of the Board of Directors. “Marti brings the experience, skills and relationships to make that happen. We are confident she is the best person to move the Yukon Quest forward.”

Steury's history with the Yukon Quest goes back to its inception in 1983 when she became the first director for the organization. In 1987 she moved on to work with a sponsor of the race, remaining an avid fan and supporter of the Yukon Quest.

Most recently, Steury was a Manager with Festival Fairbanks and managed all activities including special events and ongoing projects. She was also formerly the Owner, President and CEO of The Great Alaskan Bowl Company where she won numerous awards including Small Businessperson of the Year for the State of Alaska in 1996.

“I am excited at the opportunity to work at seeing the Yukon Quest achieve its potential,” said Steury. “I have been involved with the race at various levels over the years and have always believed this race is a true celebration of the sport of sled dog racing and am honored to help it move forward.”

Steury will be in Fairbanks this Saturday for Opening Day of signups. Mushers can sign up in person on August 8th either at the log cabin in Fairbanks from 9 am – 1pm or at the White Pass Depot in Whitehorse from 10am – 2pm.

2010 Seppala Heritage Grant Recipient Announced

THE IDITAROD TRAIL COMMITTEE is proud to announce that the 2010 Seppala Heritage Grant recipient is William "Middy" Johnson of Unalakleet Alaska. The Forty-three year old Johnson has extensive experience both as an Iditarod volunteer and dog handler for his brother Paul, who participated in the 1986 Iditarod. He also sports a long family history of dog mushing. His grandfather, Henry Ivanoff, was a participant in the original Serum Run in 1925.

Johnson received $10,000 from the Seppala Heritage Grant Committee to help fund his efforts toward running the 2010 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. The Grant Selection Committee consisted of Former Iditarod musher Dan Seavey from Seward Alaska, 1985 Iditarod Champion Libby Riddles from Fritz Creek Alaska, Longtime Iditarod musher Mike Williams form Akiak, and Laura Samuelson Director of Nome Alaska's Carrie McClain Memorial Museum.

The Seppala Heritage Grant is specifically designed to help fund the efforts of mushers who aspire to run the "Last Great Race to Nome" for the first time. Applicants have to demonstrate a commitment to work with, train and race sled dogs, and show value traits of generosity of spirit, courage, integrity and love for the dogs, land and people of Alaska.

The Seppala Heritage Grant was founded by the Seppala Family with the hope that other persons or organizations rise to the challenge and donate to this charitable grant with money or services, thereby increasing the outreach potential of this grant.
2004 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race Champion, Mitch Seavey, met that challenge by donating $10,000 of his All-Alaska Sweepstakes winning purse in order keep this very important program alive.

Yukon Quest Announces Minimum Purse of $150,000

August 5, 2009 (Fairbanks, Alaska)
The Board of Directors in both Alaska and the Yukon of the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race are pleased to announce a minimum $150,000 USD purse for the 2010 race. “We are thrilled to be able to announce a guaranteed minimum purse at this early stage of the year,” said Al Doherty, Yukon Board President. “We are incredibly excited about our new sponsorship programs for 2010 and we have already seen enough positive reaction to our efforts that we are able to make this commitment.” Sponsor solicitation is well underway for 2010 and the current response has enabled the Boards to guarantee a purse at this level so early in the season. The Boards and staff continue their work to meet and exceed sponsorship and fundraising targets for 2010. The total purse for 2009 was $154,000 and despite the current economic downturn, sponsor confidence in the Yukon Quest has allowed the Boards to set a guaranteed purse comparable to last year’s final purse. The announcement comes just days before Opening Day of signups. Mushers can sign up in person on August 8th either at the log cabin in Fairbanks from 9 am – 1pm or at the White Pass Depot in Whitehorse from 10am – 2pm. There will be an incentive draw held on August 14th for all mushers officially entered on or before Opening Day with the winner receiving a prize of $1,000 USD. The Yukon Quest is pleased to offer the same low entry fee of $1500, which includes food drop, vet check, straw and methanol. The non-refundable portion of this entry fee has been set at $500 for 2010 in order to reduce the effect of late withdrawals on race revenues. “We’re looking forward to an excellent field of mushers in 2010,” said Tania Simpson, Executive Director in Alaska. “We believe we will prove yet again why the Yukon Quest is one of the world’s premier sled dog races.”

For more information or to book and interview please contact:
Dee Enright - Outside the Cube p) 867-456-7483 ext 224 c) 867-334-5203


Seattle Torch Light Parade
Martin and 8 dogs headed to Seattle this past weekend to be part of the SEAFAIR celebration's
TORCHLIGHT Parade, sponsored by Alaska Airlines

Yukon Quest

Yukon Quest Announces Minimum Purse of $150,000

August 5, 2009 (Fairbanks, Alaska)

The Board of Directors in both Alaska and the Yukon of the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race are pleased to announce a minimum $150,000 USD purse for the 2010 race. “We are thrilled to be able to announce a guaranteed minimum purse at this early stage of the year,” said Al Doherty, Yukon Board President. “We are incredibly excited about our new sponsorship programs for 2010 and we have already seen enough positive reaction to our efforts that we are able to make this commitment.” Sponsor solicitation is well underway for 2010 and the current response has enabled the Boards to guarantee a purse at this level so early in the season. The Boards and staff continue their work to meet and exceed sponsorship and fundraising targets for 2010. The total purse for 2009 was $154,000 and despite the current economic downturn, sponsor confidence in the Yukon Quest has allowed the Boards to set a guaranteed purse comparable to last year’s final purse. The announcement comes just days before Opening Day of signups. Mushers can sign up in person on August 8th either at the log cabin in Fairbanks from 9 am – 1pm or at the White Pass Depot in Whitehorse from 10am – 2pm. There will be an incentive draw held on August 14th for all mushers officially entered on or before Opening Day with the winner receiving a prize of $1,000 USD. The Yukon Quest is pleased to offer the same low entry fee of $1500, which includes food drop, vet check, straw and methanol. The non-refundable portion of this entry fee has been set at $500 for 2010 in order to reduce the effect of late withdrawals on race revenues. “We’re looking forward to an excellent field of mushers in 2010,” said Tania Simpson, Executive Director in Alaska. “We believe we will prove yet again why the Yukon Quest is one of the world’s premier sled dog races.”

For more information or to book and interview please contact:
Dee Enright - Outside the Cube p) 867-456-7483 ext 224 c) 867-334-5203

Bootie Up for Life!

Bootie Up for life

With the purchase of a pink dog bootie from, 5 cents will be donated to the American Cancer Society to benefit breast cancer. ACS has invested more in breast cancer research grants over time than any other voluntary public health organization - $352 million since 1972! And, it was the American Cancer Society that established mammography as the gold standard for the early detection of breast cancer. Click Here for more information.

With the purchase of the purple dog bootie, 5 cents will be donated to the American Cancer Society's Bark For Life. This event honors our canine caregivers while raising money to "take a bite out of cancer". Thanks for giving the gift of life! Click Here for more information.

Seattle Torch Light Parade

Martin and 8 dogs headed to Seattle this past weekend to be part of the SEAFAIR celebration's
TORCHLIGHT Parade, sponsored by Alaska Airlines

Discovering Alaska - A Summer Lecture Series

4 time Yukon Quest Champion & 3 time Iditarod Champion, Lance Mackey will be the guest speaker at the Unniversity of Alaska Fairbanks, wednesday August 12th, at 7:00 p.m. • Schaible Auditorium • Admission is FREE. The summer lecture series is in cooperation with the UAF Center for Research Services, the International Arctic Research Center, the Institute of Arctic Biology, the Geophysical Institute and the UA Geography Program. Lance Mackey will talk about life growing up in Alaska and the mushing world. Mr Mackey will offer a question and answer period after his talk.


In the fall of 2009, two exhausted cyclists will arrive to Cancun, Mexico on their bamboo made tandem bicycle. This team is composed by Diego Gonzalez Joven and Rachael Scdoris. Their journey begins nearly six months earlier, 6,600 miles away, in Anchorage, Alaska. This courageous team will set three world records, captivate audiences worldwide and inspire millions. The mission of this journey is not only to raise awareness about climate change and encourage people to generate a sustainable way of life, but this inspirational team will use this expedition to prove people that “nothing is impossible” as log as one commits to
their goals. Through the frozen glaciers in the north, down the breathtaking coastline of the west, they will raise awareness about global climate change and motivate people to achieve their own dreams. The name of their expedition serves as a challenge to each person they encounter – “What’s Your Impossible?” The “What’s Your Impossible” team – two friends and man’s best friend is about to embark on one of the most daring, exciting and intense expeditions in history. Read more...

Willow Dog Mushers Association Hosting STRUCTURE IN ACTION with Pat Hastings

POSTED 07/11/09 - Willow, Alaska. The Willow Dog Mushers Association (WDMA) will be hosting the STRUCTURE IN ACTION workshop with renowned canine educator Pat Hastings at the Willow Community Center, Willow, Alaska, on September 20th, 2009. Pat's Structure in Action workshop discusses the value of structurally evaluating adult dogs which are being considered for breeding programs or performance competitions, and includes a veterinarian's perspective on how to reduce the risk of structural injuries in working and performance dogs from Susan Whiton, DVM, of Willow.

For further information contact Erin McClarnon, President, Willow Dog Mushers Association, or call evenings 907.495.0671 or visit

Sled Dog Cheese Anyone?

Well why not? There is rumor going around that small urban farms are trying out something new, milking dogs to make cheese. Yes, that's what I said, milking dogs to make cheese. So if any of you mushers out there are tempeted, the cheese is said to be" full bodied, and a little musky at first whiff, but salting the cheese really brings out a nice, distinct Frito odor which makes it a natural pairing with beer and three bean dip. Kids like it too." This brings new meaning to "working dogs".

Chukka Cove Hosts Special Boys

Newton Marshall Jamacian Musher
Reported by Herbert E. Murdock July 1, 2009 - Nine, fifth grade boys from the St. Ann's Bay Primary School are still talking about their outing to Chukka Cove on Thursday, June 25, the day when Daniel Melville and his accommodating staff graciously hosted a special fun day for the boys who have been enrolled in a special instructional and mentorship program, Children of our Village, since October, 2007.

Children of our Village is the brainchild of Jamaican-born Herbert E. Murdock, an experienced English teacher and retired New York City high school principal who, because of the current, island-wide, academic underachievement of Jamaican males, is determined to do whatever he can to address a problem which he thinks is untenable. In collaboration with Miss Amy James, Principal of St. Ann's Bay Primary School, and the parents/guardians of the participating boys, the program seeks to address the pressing needs of at-risk, primary school boys in St. Ann's Bay and its environs. Children of our Village operates under the auspices of the St. Ann Homecoming and Heritage Foundation of which Mr. Murdock is the chairman. Patron of the organization is Honorable Radcliffe O. Walters, Custos Rotulorum for St. Ann. Read more....

On the trap line...

Sebastian Schnuelle dusted off the suit and tie, special occasion, became a Canadian today!Congratulations Sebastaon and happy "Canada Day".

Always wanted to run dogs?

Libby Riddles

Here is an opportunity for long-term caretakers for 40 dog recreational kennel of past Iditarod Champion from October 2009 to October 2010 or longer. Duties include feeding dogs & cleaning the yard 2x day, fixing fences, dog houses & posts, hooking up teams, house sitting. Double sledding & some recreational mushing opportunities. Applicants need to be clean, responsible, animal lovers, not afraid to do physical work, and not mind a little wind & weather. You’ll need your own wheels. Great opportunity for couple wanting to save money and learn dog care and mushing. I provide nice cabin with electricity, monitor stove, hi-speed net, gravity feed water, outhouse (showers & laundry next door), a small monthly stipend, and one of the best views in Alaska. Work is available in Homer, 13 miles. Couple could work part time or one member could work full time and other is full time kennel. Provide resume and at least 3 references with phone numbers, and a summary of why you want the position so I can find the best match.

Contact : Libby Riddles
Blazing Kennels E-mail: Riddles
Fritz Creek, Alaska, USA

Mush Mon! Jamaica Dogsled Team to run the Iditarod

Newton Marshall Jamacia

Press Release June 29, 2009 (Wasilla, Alaska) – On Saturday in Wasilla, Alaska, Newton Marshall of the Jamaica Dogsled Team (JDT) officially signed on to test his skills on the 2010 Iditarod.

Three-time champion Lance Mackey, who will be training Marshall as he prepares for the race, was on-hand in Wasilla to deliver the required documentation. He was noticeably excited to have the opportunity to partner with JDT.

“Newton has proved himself to be courageous and able to beat the odds as he did last year at the Yukon Quest,” said Mackey. “I am proud to be a part of the team that will see Newton complete the last great race on earth.”

Marshall will be a rookie racing the Iditarod, but proved he is qualified to face this test, having raced the Yukon Quest in 2009 and winning the Challenge of the North Award as a result. This award was given for his perseverance in spite of all the odds against him. Yukon Quest race officials selected Marshall as the award recipient.

“I can’t wait to return to Alaska to run the Iditarod,” said Marshall. “I know Lance will have a great team ready for me and I fell in love with the area this past winter. It’s going to be great!”

The 2010 Iditarod begins next March in Anchorage.

The Jamaica Dogsled Team is sponsored by Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville, Chukka Caribbean Adventures, WestJet Vacations, Alpine Aviation and Annamaet Petfoods.


Press Release (Wasilla, AK. June 27, 2009)
The 2010 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race first day sign ups began at 9:30 am Alaska time at the Iditarod Trail Committee Headquarters. By the end of the first draw deadline (3:30 pm Alaska Time) sixty mushers had signed up. Four time Iditarod Champions Jeff King and Martin Buser joined three time Iditarod Champion (2007,2008,2009) Lance Mackey along with a number of top ten Iditarod Finishers at today's sign ups. So far 19 rookies have signed up for the 2010 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

More than 500 volunteers and mushers gathered at the Iditarod Trail Committee Headquarters. They were served a barbeque luncheon by the Millennium Alaska Hotel (The Official Hotel of the Iditarod trail Sled Dog Race). Jeff King (Denali Alaska) and Robert Nelson (Kotzebue Alaska) won their $4,000 entry fees back in a final drawing that marked the end of the 2009 Volunteer Appreciation Picnic.

More photo's click here

To see the complete list of 2010 mushers visit Iditaro's official web site Click Here

Iditarod sponsored summer camp for teachers!

The 2010 Iditarod sponsored "Teachers summer Camp" is touring Alaska, visiting various kennels and absorbing as much as they can on their quick summer trip. caught up with the group while they were vsiting the Van Zyle Kennel, hosted by Jon & Jona Van Zyle. DeeDee Jonrowe was also on hand to share a few stories and introduce the group to her newest litter of pups. This years Iditarod teacher on the trail will be Herb Brambley, from Breezewood, PA. He was gracious enough to play a few tunes on his guitar while theother teachers visited with theVan Zyles.

Click here to see more photos from todays visit!!!


Bear Visit...

Since I have had a few request to post my bear photos.....and there's not much going on in the mushing world, so enjoy!....
Click Here to view photos

Urgent Dog Food Needs Due to Flooding on the Upper Yukon

May 21, 2009- ALASKA NEWS

The Alaska Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster (AKVOAD) desk at the State Emergency Coordination has validated the need for dog food for the communities of Circle, Eagle, Stevens Village, and Tanana. The estimated total need is for 8,000 pounds per week for the foreseeable future. Many of the villages will need dog food until the salmon arrive in July. There may be additional needs for dog food in other villages as the word comes in. Dog food can be donated several ways. The most urgent need at this time is for dog food to be staged out of Fairbanks.

IN FAIRBANKS: Drop off at the Civil Air Patrol hanger in Fairbanks at 3855 S University Avenue (East Ramp, Fairbanks International Airport). During working hours the dog food can be dropped off inside; at other times drop on the pallets outside the hanger.

OUTSIDE OF FAIRBANKS: Order dog food from a store in Fairbanks and ask them to drop off the food at the Civil Air Patrol hanger in Fairbanks. Via Credit Card.

Call: 49er Dog Food Store in Fairbanks (907) 488-4999 OR Coldspot Feeds. (907) 457-8555 Note: this is Alaska Time Zone. EDT -4 hours

IN ANCHORAGE: Drop off at the Alaska Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASCPA), 549 W International Airport Rd (907-562-2999) Deliveries ONLY Weekdays from 10AM to 4PM.

WASILLA /PALMER: ANYONE WHO COULD BE A COLLECTION SITE FOR PET FOOD CALL Arlan DeYong, VOAD Desk in the State Emergency Coordination Center, (907) 428-7131 or E-mail Arlan AKVOAD will coordinate delivery from Fairbanks and Anchorage to the affected communitie.s

On Tuesday, May 19, 1,500 pounds of dog food was delivered to Tanana by the state and 2,400 pounds of donated dog food was delivered to Stevens Village by the Civil Air patrol. AKVOAD has a general need to help with unmet human needs due to the 2009 floods. AKVOAD is accepting donations to the “2009 Spring Floods” account at any Alaska USA Federal Credit Union. Additionally, checks may me mailed to:

2535 Crestwood St
Anchorage, AK 99508

POC: Arlan DeYong, VOAD Desk in the State Emergency Coordination Center, (907) 428-7131 or



In keeping with the legacy of Leonhard Seppala and the qualities demonstrated by him in his lifetime, the Seppala Heritage Grant has been established to support and promote those persons demonstrating a commitment to work with, train and race sled dogs, and who demonstrate the qualities of generosity of spirit, courage, integrity and love for the dogs, land and people of Alaska.

In 2005 the grant was seeded by the Seppala Family with a $10,000 donation and a four-year commitment of $10,000 per year per recipient. Mitch Seavey, Iditarod Champion and winner of the 2008 All Alaska Sweepstakes, has graciously donated the $10,000 for the 2010 Seppala Heritage Grant.  It is the hope of the Seppala Family and the selection committee that other persons or organizations will donate to this charitable grant with money or services, thereby increasing the outreach potential of this grant. Grant funds are administrated by Iditarod National Historic Trail, Inc., a private, nonprofit organization with 501, C-3 federal tax status.

Persons eligible for the grant include any youth, junior musher or rookie who aspires to the senior Iditarod race for the first time, and who demonstrates the qualities outlined above. Financial need will also be considered.

The selection committee members for the grant are:
Dan Seavey, musher of Seward, Alaska, a founder and four time runner of the Iditarod Race, member of the Iditarod Trail Committee and Iditarod National Historic Trail, Inc., and retired history teacher.

Libby Riddles, musher, of Fritz Creek, Alaska, first woman to win the Iditarod Race and recipient of the 1985 Seppala Humanitarian Award, author and sled dog tour operator.

Laura Samuelson, musher of Nome, Alaska, Iditarod Finish Checker 1991-2001 and Director of Nome’s Carrie M. McLain Memorial Museum.

Mike Williams, musher of Akiak, Alaska, ten time finisher of the Iditarod Race promoting sobriety, Chair of the Alaskan Inter-Tribal Council and member of the Alaska Board of Education.

Maja Ramsey, horsewoman of Sausalito, California, teacher, mediator, retired litigator and granddaughter of Leonhard Seppala.

Leonhard Seppala is an Alaskan legend. Born in Norway in 1877, as a young man he migrated to the Nome goldfields. There he began his lifelong love affair with Northern sled dogs. First, as a gold mine freighter, later as trainer and racer of imported Siberian dogs. With these, on three occasions, he won the famed 408-mile All Alaska Sweepstakes. He garnered international acclaim in 1925 for the giant’s role he played in the dog team relay of serum from Nenana to diphtheria stricken Nome. Seppala died in Seattle at age 90. His ashes were spread along the Iditarod Trail.

Today, Seppala is an honored icon of the world famous Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. Annual presentations of the Leonhard Seppala Humanitarian Award pay tribute to Seppala’s exemplary care and kind treatment of racing dogs. Also, honorary mushers selected by the Iditarod Trail Committee’s Board of Directors are designated “Leonhard Seppala Honorary Mushers.” He was the first to be inducted into the Alaska Mushers Hall of Fame in 1967.

Applications for the 2010 Seppala Heritage Grant - Click Here(PDF) .  Completed applications must be received by May 15, 2009. See grant application for more details.


The Iditarod Historic Trail Centennial, January 2008 to October 2012, commemorates events of historical significance to Alaska, from sled dog travels to gold mining to the designation of Alaska as a territory in 1912. The year 2008 marked the 100th anniversary of the Alaska Road Commission efforts to open an overland route from Seward to Nome. Starting in 1909, gold seekers hiked or mushed to the Iditarod Mining District after word spread of the 1908 Christmas Day gold strike by John Beaton and W.A. Dikeman on Otter Creek, a tributary of the Iditarod River. This was the beginning of the last great gold rush in Alaska’s history. After the Alaska Road Commission completed trail construction in 1911, gold carrying sled dog teams became a regular sight on the trial.

During the next three years Dan Seavey and his Centennial Team will promote the Iditarod National Historic Trail and encourage all Alaskans and visitors to experience the spirit of the Iditarod National Historic Trail, to explore its rich history of people, communities and development and to become active stewards promoting the protection and preservation of the trail. Dan Seavey is a member of the Board of Directors and past president of the Iditarod Historic Trail Alliance, who is sponsor of this Centennial Team. He is also founder and 27 year president of the Seward Iditarod Trail Blazers.

Dan Seavey ran the inaugural Iditarod Race in 1973, again in 1974, and competed in the 25th anniversary race in 1997. In 2001, three generations of Seaveys – Dan, son Mitch and grandson Danny – become the first ever 3 generations to compete in the same race.


Lance Mackey enjoys a little Pennsylvania hospitality - by Walt Tremer
The happy howls of sled dogs, the 90 below wind chill off Norton Sound, and the deep love for Larry his lead dog all came alive this week as Lance Mackey, three time champion of the Iditarod, spun his incredible tales from this year's dog sled race across Alaska.

Students, mushers and mushing fans took a ride in Lance's sled as he lead his team from Anchorage to Nome, through some of the harshest and most challenging environments on earth.
In winning the Iditarod the last three years, and also the Yukon Quest two of those three years, Lance has climbed to the pinnacle of the mushing world. His incredible dogs team, and Lance's training has changed the mushing world forever, as other mushers try to challenge his amazing achievements.
The first checkpoint stop along Lance's Lehigh Valley trail (Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton) was the Bethlehem Municipal Ice Rink, site of the annual "Idita-Skate", a fundraiser for Lance's dogs. In relating their fun in skating "Laps for Lance", the skaters and the champion talked about the challenge and passionate commitment of athletic achievement.

The second checkpoint on Lance's trail was Spring Garden Elementary School in Bethlehem. Lance held spellbound each class of students who had studied the Iditarod, with his stories of the trail, his loving relationship to his dogs, and the challenge of this year's brutal weather along the trail. Endless photos were taken and numerous autographs were carried home, clutched in the small hands of students who swore they were going to be a musher "just like Lance" when they grew up!

The morning presentation was interrupted by a planned surprise - the mayor of Bethlehem arrived and presented Lance with an official proclamation stating that the day was "Lance Mackey Day" in the city.
Lance told all the students to bring their dogs to school next year on "his day"!

The third of Lance's checkpoints consisted of a "Meet and Greet" with gifted students of Southern Lehigh School District, where the students had a chance to informally sit and chat with the champion.

Following this hour, nearly three hundred people came to the auditorium to hear Lance present "The Champion's View Of The Iditarod". Lance talked about the challenge of the trail, the equipment necessary for the brutal cold, and of his love of his dogs. He gave an exciting recreation of his encounter with a moose during the Ceremonial Start, and brought the crowd to near tears with his emotional descriptions of Larry, his famed lead dog and his new lead Maple. Lance swelled with pride each time he spoke of his son Cain, who won this year's Junior Iditarod. Each fan went away with a personalized autographed picture of Lance and a picture taken with the "World's Toughest Athlete".

The next day found Lance at his fourth scheduled checkpoint, the Nitschman Middle School in Bethlehem. A gymnasium full of fascinated students met him, and hung on every word about mushing and the Iditarod. Lance followed the presentation with a visit to the "Sequoia Program" a unique academic group in the school.

That afternoon, Lance celebrated the end of his trail schedule with a visit to the local Harley-Davidson showroom, where he eyed some vehicles a little faster than his dogs, and bought biker gifts for his family.

Pennsylvania is not exactly the mushing capital of the world.... But Lance and his magical visit has created a area of diehard Iditarod and mushing fans in the Lehigh Valley, and people asking "Where can we find a flight to Nome? I want to be there when Lance makes it his fourth in a row. "

2009 "Tails From the Trail" banquet and silent auction
The 2009 "Tails From the Trail" chairity banquet and silent auction is Friday, April 24th at the Fairbanks Princess Hotel. Social Hour starts at 5:30 PM and dinner is served at 6:30 PM. After dinner speakers include Vern Halter, Jodi Bailey and Mike McCowan. Proceeds to benefit special needs children. Tickets are $35 each and are available at Cold Spot Feeds, The Prospector and Pleasant Valley Store in Two Rivers. Cash or check only. For further information, please contact The Sled Dog Fund at (907) 378-3358.

Michelle Phillips takes 1st in the Taiga 300
Michelle Phillips grabs first place in the 2009 Taiga 300, crossing the finish line at 3:33pm April 3rd.

Click here for more details

John Baker Wins the Kobuk 440 !

A mass start at the 2009 Kobuk 440 - Photo by Cathy at Aqvaluq Photography

Twelve Mushers Set to Race the 2009 Kobuk 440
- ALASKA - Kotzebue to kobuk and back. Start time - April 2nd at 4:40 pm. With the sign up every musher will be in the money (race pays out to 12th place). Mushers signed up: Mike Williams Jr., Garald Riley, Dempsy Woods Sr, Heath Coro, Pete Kaiser, John Baker, Robert Nelson, Ed Iten, Rainer Lorenz, Chuck Schaeffer, Middy Johnson, Garald Sousa. Check back often for daily reports on trail conditions and race updates - Race stats click here.

Tonya Schletner
leads in the Taiga 300
Mushers are running a tight race in this years Taiga 300. Weather has been cooperative this race, light snow falling with a high of 22 degrees (f) lows minus 21 at Maclaren Lodge. Trails are in great shape, plenty of snow and temperatures dipping to minus 20 at night makes for a hard fast race. Follow the 2009 Taiga 300 Click here

Kobuk 440 update "Due to volcano issues, the drop deadline for the Kobuk 440 has been changed to Thursday, April 2nd to give folks that want to race a chance to get there stuff here to Kotzebue".
Kobuk 440 Reminder Starts April 2, 2009 - A 440 mile race from Kotzebue to Kobuk and back. . Start Time: 4:40pm Entry Fee: $440 plus $100 dog drop fee. Purse breakdown: 1st place $15,000.00, 2nd place $8,250.00, 3rd place $7,700.00, 4th place $6,600.00, 5th place $4,950.00, 6th place $4,400.00, 7th place $3,850.00, 8th place $3,300.00, 9th place $2,750.00, 10th place $2,200.00, 11th place $2000.00, 12th place $1700.00, 13th place $1300.00. For additional info contact: Chuck Schaeffer phone 907-442-6028. Email: Cathy Jones Cell: 907-412-1012 email

The mushers and other volunteers were given a tour of the NICU.
Providence & Mushers raise awareness of prematurity as a public health issue - Iditarod mushers carried babies’ footprints on this years Last Great Race to Nome. 100 tiny footprints of Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) babies were carried 1,149 miles by dogsled on the 2009 “Last Great Race on Earth” by veteran Iditarod mushers DeeDee Jonrowe and Jessie Royer to build public awareness around the challenge of premature birth. Parents in all of the NICUs in Alaska were invited to send their babies’ footprints on the Iditarod, along with a letter about prematurity. These were carried on a dogsled from Anchorage to Nome; and mailed back to the families. Letters also have been sent to legislators on the Alaska Senate, House, and Health and Social Services Committees, to emphasize the message that prematurity is important to all of us in Alaska as a public health issue. This includes prevention of premature birth as well as providing services to children who have been born prematurely, so that they can have their full measure of high quality of life and productive citizenship. Iditarod mushers DeeDee Jonrowe and Jessie Royer, Providence NICU Medical Director Dr. Lily Lou; official artist of the Iditarod Sled Dog Race, Jon Van Zyle; Philatelic Society volunteer, David Schwantes; and parents of NICU babies all took part in this important event. The envelopes that carried the baby footprints were signed by DeeDee and Jessie and hand canceled for the first half of their journey.

Tok Sled Dog Races
- The 56th annual Tok Dog Mushers Association Race of Champions is scheduled for its traditional weekend March 28 & 29, 2009. Drawing and potluck dinner (free) is on Friday the 27th at 6PM. All racers must be 18 years of age. There will be no post entries after the drawing. Plan now to join us. For phone contact regarding trail and other matters, please contact Dale Probert at (907) 883-5313 or e-mail

Taiga 300 Starts Race start will be 11:00a.m. April 1, 2009. There will be a timed start at 2 minute intervals. Times will be equalized at the first mandatory layover. Layovers will be at Wolverene Lodge--6 hours, Maclaren Lodge--8 hours, and again at Maclaren Lodge for 4 hours. The race will cover approximately 312 miles in segments of 60, 110, 30, and 110 miles. No planned help is allowed at any time during the race. For more information click here

A Little Cantwell Fun March 28th & 29th! - MARCH 24, 2009, CANTWELL ALASKA - Here's a little impromptu sled dog ski-jour race going on this coming weekend as a part of the Cantwell Rondy. Sunday March 29th 4-6 dog 3 mile race, 1-2 dog ski-jour 3 miles, 6-8 25 mile race. Musher's meeting is 10:00 A.M. Sunday morning, 3 mile sled dog race starts at 11:00 A.M. Followed by the ski-jour race, and then the 25 mile sled dog race. The 25 mile race trail is in fantastic shape and is probably the most beautiful 25 miles of trail anywhere. It's really just a fun run. There is also a whole list of activities planned for the weekend. Saturday March 28th 11:30 AM 22 shoot, 12:30 AM barefoot race, 12:45 AM Clench a wench, 2:30 PM potato in the hay, 3:00 PM split stack wood race, 3:30 PM blindfold snowmachine race 5:00 PM outhouse race Just for kids. There is also going to be a little guys sled dog race at noon on Saturday don't even need dogs it's really a kid a mutt on a small pond just north of town. After the kid and mutt race there will be kids games. For kid and mutt info please call Al Cockman @ 768-6874Saturday evening there will be 6 PM trap setting competition,, 7 PM Wild game feed potluck, 8 PM Saturdays event awards, 9 PM live Music - Contacts: Mike Brooks @ 388-8743 Janet Brooks @ 388-2709 Armeda Bulard @ 388-9493 Cantwell lodge after 5:00 PM @ 768-2300 Bunk house rooms will be available, free camping Water available for dogs.

   photo courtesy of Norma Delia
Alaska's Mt. Redout Erupts along Iditarod Trail - Photos Courtesy of Norma Delia, of Skwentna. the gray on the snow is ash from the explosion of Mt. Redoubt Sunday night March 22, 2009. The ash cloud drifted west of Anchorage and Wasilla, but Skwentna was a direct target. The white path you're seeing is where Joe Delia essentially swept a path from their house to the post office. Ash is still falling....

Iditarod Awards Banquet
The Nome Recreation Center was full of hundreds of Iditarod race fans as the 2009 Iditarod Finishers were recognized for their achievements during the thirty seventh edition of “The Last Great Race on Earth.” The Finishers Banquet was catered by the Millennium Alaskan Hotel, as dozens of volunteers from Nome and beyond served the many who attended. Click Here to read more...

Check out the 2009 Iditarod final standings
and our 2009 Iditarod photos - Start | Re-Start | On the trail | Nome

Listen to Iditablog Podcast 09
Josh Rogers has been covering the Iditarod for many years. He is awesome. Here is his
final podcast of the 2009 Iditarod Season (they will continue blogging for another week or so) they talk about the top 20 Iditarod finishers, talk about “next year” and review the news.
Click Here to listen

Ellis Wins Open North American
Ellis wins record 9th North American sled dog title. Willow musher passes
George Attla for most wins in 3-day Fairbanks race.

1) Egil Ellis 222:48.9; 2) Buddy Streeper 222:53.4; 3) Arleigh Reynolds 229:03.8; 4) Bill Kornmuller 231:18:0; 5) Ken Chezik 231:52.6; 6) Jason Dunlap 234:22.0; 7) Ricky Taylor 234:32.8; 8) Marvin Kokrine 235:39.2; 9) Don Cousins 238:37.6; 10) Michael Tetzner 239:44.6; 11) Ed Wood 243:50.6; 12) Jeff Conn 247:06.2; 13) Jack Berry 257:50.4; 14) Heather Hardy 260:14.1; 15) Gary Markley 286:40.3

Back of the Iditarod pack gets hit with another storm - White Mountain area forecast has a wind chill advisory in effect from 9 PM this evening to 12 PM akdt Monday... Tonight mostly cloudy. Decreasing clouds after midnight. Lows 5 to 15 below. Northeast winds 10 to 20 mph with local gusts to 25 mph and wind chill to 45 below. Those still in or around White Mountain checkpoint are: Tim Osmar, Rachael Scdoris, Wade Marrs, Trent Herbst, Eric Rogers, Michael Suprenant, Heather Sirtola, Timothy Hunt & Alan Peck.

As the saying goes - It ain't over 'till the last musher puts out the widows lamp.

Follow the Iditarod Click here for current standings

Mushers roll into Nome....
As of today 30 mushers have rolled into Nome. Wind burned faces, swollen cheeks from exposure to the cold tired and wiery. Mushers quick to thank their dogs and tend to them as they cross the finish line.

It takes team work. These mushers and their dogs have been through some of the worst weather you can imagine. Cold winds bombarded the entire race field, to an extent halting the race for a time. I know everyone congratulates the top mushers but lets not forget the rest of them out there.

As the saying goes - It ain't over 'till the last musher puts out the widows lamp.
Follow the Iditarod Click here for current standings

For the Love of Dogs
DVD/Martin Buser: Documenting Martin's relationship with his dogs and the Iditarod. It's full of humor. Wonderful footage and amazing dogs. happy Trails kennel is a class act. When you are done watching this well produced DVD you will know more about what it takes to be a musher, prepare for races and operate a kennel.

For the Love of Dogs takes you from the puppy pens at the famed Happy Trails Kennels to the renowned Iditarod sled dog race finish line, in Nome. If you love dogs, you'll love this DVD. An hour of fun for the whole family.

Priced at $24.95
To order your copy click here


A Tale of Two Iditarods - BOOK REVIEW BY GOMUSH.COM MARCH 2009
This is a great book! "A Tale of Two Iditarods" is a checkpoint to checkpoint account of Mark Chapoton's two Iditarods. Mark takes you on the Iditarod trail with his funny tales, great descriptions and exciting moments mushing dogs. You might even recognize a few faces, places and stories if you follow the Iditarod at all....learning the sport of mushing from his uncle, four time Iditarod champion Martin Buser, Mark goes from handler to two time Iditarod finisher. Iditarod fans and adventurers will enjoy this fast paced easy read. I loved it!!!

Click here to buy from

Hickel first to scratch in Iditarod
- Sixty seven year old life long Alaskan, Bob Hickel, is no stranger to Iditarod. This is his 5th run. He ran 1990, 1992, 1997, and 2003. He had to scratch in 2003. This year his Iditarod is over at Finger Lake. No word on why. Sixty six mushers continue on their mission to Nome. Follow the Iditarod race standings - click here

Mushers leave the road behind them
Good bye to Willow, Alaska. It's the last stop on the road system for sixty seven mushers. Mushers arrive early at the Willow check point. Checking their sled runners, re-stuffing the sled bags for the tenth time. It's a family reunion of sorts, a send off of loved ones and a growing trhill for fans cheering their favorite musher safely to Nome.
The aroma of barbques filled the air as handlers began celebrating with tailgate party's that their mushers are finally hitting the trail.

Follow the mushers progress on Iditarods web site race stats and sign up for their insider tracker. A new fangled device (GPS) that can track each musher and where they are at any given moment. It's addicting.

More photos being added here

Ceremonial Iditarod Race Begins...
Dan Seavey, one of the founders of the Iditarod Race, is the first out of the starting gate, celebrating the 100th year of the National Trails.

The Iditarod Historic Trail Centennial, January 2008 to October 2012, commemorates events of historical significance to Alaska, from sled dog travels to gold mining to the designation of Alaska as a territory in 1912. The year 2008 marked the 100th anniversary of the Alaska Road Commission efforts to open an overland route from Seward to Nome. Starting in 1909, gold seekers hiked or mushed to the Iditarod Mining District after word spread of the 1908 Christmas Day gold strike by John Beaton and W.A. Dikeman on Otter Creek, a tributary of the Iditarod River.

More Iditarod photos click here

Defending Champion Lance Mackey
Iditarod 2009 starts March 7th... It's that time of year when the mother of all sled dog races begins in downton Anchorage, Alaska, the Iditarod Sled Dog Race. Over one thousand miles of Alaska's wilderness. Go anywhere in Anchorage and the chatter is about the race. Who's running, who's going to win what's the weather going to be. It brings tourist up from all over the world, dedicated volunteers get to work with the enormous logistics of this race, locals come out to cheer on their favorite musher. The race will start at 10 am. There will be live on by KTUU-TV Channel 2 for Alaskan viewers or grab the Insiders coverage through Iditarods web site.

Musher line up - Click here

More 2009 news?

More 2008 news? Read more.....

The 2009 Fur Rondy World Championship "Champs"

photo by Britt Coon

Who is Norman Vaughan?
The 2009 Serum Run Turns Back- MARCH 2, 2009 NENANA, ALASKA - Mushers and snowmachiners on the 2009 Norman Vaughan Serum Run have had to make the tough decision to pull the plug on this years expedition. Bombarded with problems from Nenana. Starting with a missing snow machiner from Nome, planning to ride down by snowmachine to Nenana for the start, he broke down near Unalakleet, but at the time no one knew that. A search team was called out. He was fine, just broke down, now waiting for parts to meet up with the group, but parts were delayed. Then two machiners ran into mechanical problems near Manley, one so bad he had to get a new snow machine and tow the seized up machine into Manley. The other machiner waited in Manley for parts that had to be flown in from Fairbanks. This delayed the expedition an extra day. Then the real fun started. The trail between Tanana and Ruby was gastly, bottomless trails, snow at times up to their armpits. They tried to make a go of it, on that day, a member of the expedition started getting sypmtoms of a heart attack and was medavaced back to Anchorage (she is fine now). They hoped if they could fly the dog teams to Ruby all would be good, the machines could manuever the trails and catch up. But, that wasn't happening. Pulling huge sleds, filled with gear and dog food was just too much for the soft deep trails. One machine after another was swallowed up in the deep snow. So now there's dog teams in Galena, with no supplies to move forward and snow machiners who cannot get past Tanana. The decision was made today for the machiners to head back to Nenana and the mushers be flown back to Anchoarge. As Norman Vaughan used to say "Dream Big, Dare to Fail". He told me once, "you don't always make it the first time, but you just keep trying" he said "It's all an adveture". For more information visit the Serum Run web site
Michelle Phillips Receives Veternarians Choice Award from Quest
March 3, 2009; 1130 PST (Whitehorse, Yukon) - The 2009 Yukon Quest announced its award winners on Saturday night in Fairbanks, Alaska. This years' winners are as follows:
Veterinarian’s Choice Award: Presented to the Michelle Phillips. The veternarian's Choice award given for the musher who demonstrates outstanding canine care for their dogs throughout the race, in the best spirit of the Yukon Quest. This award is a legacy for aspiring mushers to emulate in the humane treatment and care of their team. Nominees voted on by the race veterinarians.Challenge of the North Award: Presented to Newton Marshall. Given to the the musher who most exemplifies the "Spirit of the Yukon Quest", a spirit that compels one to challenge themselves and persevere. Voted on by race officials.
Sportsmanship Award:Presented to Brent Sass. Given to the musher exhibiting the best sportsmanship along the trail. The selection is made by fellow mushers.Rookie of the Year Award: Presented to Martin Buser. Given to the highest placing official finisher who has never before reached the halfway point of Dawson City. Dawson City Award: Presented to William Kleedehn. Given to the first musher to reach Dawson City (home of the "greatest gold rush the world has ever known") who completes the race, they receive 4 ounces of Yukon placer gold! Golden Harness Award: Presented to Inuk and Nemo. Given to the Champion lead dog(s). Red Lantern Award: Presented to Iris Wood Sutton. Given to the last official finisher.

2009 Fur Rondy World Championship photos - Click here
photos courtesy of Donna Quante

Cain Carter photo by Theresa Daily ©
Cain Carter Wins 2009 Jr Iditarod - March 1, 2009
With the sun shinning and the Mackey clan cheering him on, Cain Carter rolled into the Willow checkpoint/finish line with 10 happy dogs and all smiles. This surely will be a moment Cain will remember forever. Parents, Lance and Tonya beaming were with pride.

Cain takes home a $5,000 scholarship for his efforts. In addition the winner of the Jr. Iditarod receives round trip tickets to Nome for themselves and their parents for the Iditarod Awards' Banquet, at which he is presented with a beautiful championship trophy. Additional placement prizes awarded to those who run the Jr. Iditarod are donated by local businesses - items such as a new sled, snow shoes, fur caps, fur mits, cold weather clothing and gear, portraits, and a variety of other nice gifts. Every finisher gets something.

What an adventure, what an accomplishment for all these kids. You can be sure that this group of teenagers has confidence to tackle just about anything. Congratulations to all the junior mushers.
Race results are available on the Jr. Iditarod website:

Track the Jr Iditarod mushers with IonEarth Trackers Click Here

2009 Junior Iditarod Photos-
click here

Kromuller Closer to Gold Ring
Bill Kornmuller continues his lead on day two of the Fur Rondy Open World Championships in downtown Anchorage, Alaska inspite of his team running into a crowd of spectators. The trails are reported to be in great shape and well groomed. New snow over night may slow things down today. Temperatures range between 20-25 F. A crowd of spectators lined the streets cheering mushers. Eighteen teams entered in the 3 day event.

There will be local radio coverage by KHAR 590AM

Click here for race updates

2009 Junior Iditarod takes off!
Photos of the here

Serum Run Hits Deep Snow - The 2009 Serum Run expedition confronts deep snow. The leadersof the group decided to fly the teams & dog sleds from Tanana to Ruby, on planes chartered from Wright Flying Services in Fairbanks. Concerns over snow depth and trail conditions. (There was 3-12" of snow in the area, depending on location, with more expected.) So, the group should be in Ruby later today. They were going to need a few trips in the planes to move all the dogs & stuff. The snow machiners, meanwhile, are going overland along the planned route, and anticipate meeting up with the dog teams in Ruby. You can track their progress on SPOT trackers - click here

Quest comes to a close - February 28, 2009; 1200 AKST (Fairbanks, Alaska) - Iris Wood Sutton will receive the Red Lantern award as the final musher to successfully cross the finish line at the 2009 Yukon Quest. Wood Sutton arrived in Fairbanks this morning at 10:41 AM, just under 14 days after beginning the race on February 14 in Whitehorse. Becca Moore, who had been traveling with Wood Sutton for the final half of the race, arrived 28 minutes earlier at 10:13 AM.The arrival of the final two mushers after two weeks on the trail draws to conclusion the 1,000 mile international sled dog race.The race saw many stories emerge, including Sebastian Schnuelle becoming Yukon Quest champion for the first time, William Kleedehn receiving 4 ounces of Klondike placer gold for winning the Dawson City Award, Martin Buser winning Rookie of the Year honours, and Jamaican musher Newton Marshall successfully completing the race in 13th place.The stories will continue tonight as the mushers celebrate the successful running of the 2009 Yukon Quest at the Award's Banquet in Fairbanks. For Yukon Quest final race results Click here

Arleigh Reynolds from Salcha, Alaska
photo courtesy of John Gomes

Kornmuller Leads in Rondy Day One
Bill Kornmuller takes the lead on day one of the Fur Rondy Open World Championships in downtown Anchorage, Alaska. The trails are reported to be in great shape and well groomed. Temperatures range between 20-25 F. A crowd of spectators lined the streets cheering mushers as they flew by. Eighteen teams entered in the 3 day event.

There will be local radio coverage by KHAR 590AM

Click here for race updates

Track the Junior Iditarod starting February 28th
IonEarth, a sponsor of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, will be providing Iditarod Insider GPS Trackers for the Jr. Iditarod sleds during the 2009 race. Race results will be available on the Jr. Iditarod website: as the mushers make their way from checkpoint to checkpoint. There will be a phone number to call for information while the mushers are on the trail. Junior mushes must be at least 14 but not yet 18 to be eligible for entry in the Jr. Iditarod. A total of 21 young mushers have signed up for this weekends race.
Track the Jr Iditarod mushers with IonEarth Trackers Click Here

The trail typically follows the Iditarod trail from the Wasilla area to the Big Bend of the Yentna River approximately 80 miles from the start. At that point, the mushers take a mandatory 8 to 12 hour layover depending on trail conditions and experience camping out with and caring for their dogs and themselves. The half way point is at Yentna Station Roadhouse . Another checkpoint is located about midway between the start and Yentna Station, in the area of the Susuitna River. Race officials medical and veterinary personnel are available at each checkpoint also. Good trails to them all.

Honda's Quest Over For 2009 - February 27, 2009; 1000 AKST (Fairbanks, Alaska) - Yuka Honda scratched from the 2009 Yukon Quest this morning after returning to Mile 101 dog drop. Honda is the eleventh musher to scratch from this year's race.

Checkin' Out the Rondy Trails
The 2009 Rondy mushers gathered today in Anchorage to see what the trails were like before the big day. Mushers hooked their sleds to old iron dogs and were towed around the Rondy race course. The trails are in great condition, plenty of snow and well groomed. Light snow is predicted on and off all weekend which may change the trails considerably. Currently temperatures sit at a comfortable 20 degrees (ƒ). Mushers will run a 25 mile course each day for 3 days.
There will be local radio coverage by KHAR 590AM

Follow the daily races click here

Four Rookies Cross the Ouest Finish Line
- February 26, 2009; 0800 AKST (Fairbanks, Alaska) - The trail ended for four rookie mushers in the early morning hours of February 26th. Normand Casavant was the first to reach the finish line at 2:26 AM in tenth place overall. A warm welcome awaited him and he was quick to compliment his team. Mark Sleightholme, a rookie from England who ran both his qualifiers this year, was the next to come in at 4:58 AM. Mark was running on a team from the 2009 Yukon Quest champion Sebastian Shnuelle. He completed the last leg in 5h 21m - 21m faster than Sebastian.Hot on his heels was Colleen Robertia an Alaskan musher who finished just 13 minutes after Mark. Colleen made up 21 minutes on Mark and recorded the fastest run on this leg to date at 5 hours. Jamaican musher Newton Marshall was greeted at the finish line by steel drums, fans, media and the film crew that has been following him for over a year. Also among those waiting for Marshall at the finish line was champion musher Hans Gatt, who has been training Marshall. Meanwhile, Russ Bybee became the ninth musher to scratch from the 2009 Yukon Quest. Bybee scratched with a race judge at Mile 101 on Thursday morning.

A tenth musher has scratched from Quest this morning at the Central checkpoint. Jason Mackey scratched at the Central checkpoint. For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Mural Depicts Fur Rondy's Fastest Sleddogs and Mushers on Earth - Downtown Anchorage has one more must-see attraction for tourists. Located right in the courtyard of the Sunshine Mall. Visitors can find a new larger-than-life wall mural of the Fur Rondy World Championship Sled dog races and its winners. Honoring George Attla, Roland Lombard, Raymond Paul, Charlie Champaine, Ross Saunderson, Egil Elliss, Roxy Wright-Champaine and Blayne Streeper. This panoramic mural is an exciting addition for the state sport and Alaskans. Recognizing sprint mushers from all over.

More photos can be seen by John Gomes - click here

photo courtesy of YQ

Canadian Musher, Kyla Boivin, scratches from Yukon Quest - February 25, 2009; 1800 AKST (Fairbanks, Alaska) - Twenty six year old, Kyla Boivin, from Whitehorse, scratched today near the base of Eagle Summit on Steese Highway. Boivin attempted to climb the summit but turned back when her dogs were unable to make the ascent.

Boivin is the eighth musher to scratch from the 2009 Yukon Quest.
For Yukon Quest official race updates and final times Click here

Get Ready for the Cotswold Outdoors Wyedean Quest Sled Dog Race
27 teams have enter the first ever Wyedean Quest Sled Dog Race sponsored by Cotswold Outdoors. The teams will set off friday evening into the dark of the Forest of Dean for the first of 4 stages in the UKs newest race. Several leading local teams will contest the race alongside mushes from as far afield as the north of scotland ( the opposite end of the country for musher Rob Morley) and international musher Nick Evans, is due to start the race after a fantastic 3rd place at the weekend in the european sprint championship in the alps with his team of greenland dogs. Mushers and dogs will face four stages around the English countryside in the countries first 4 stage dryland sled dog race. Matt Hammersley, musher and race director says ' the trails are going to be fast and challenging for both mushers and dogs with lots of turns; a few hills and some switchbacks. This is a first for a UK race, we have done away with the normal class system and extended the length of the race to 4 stages rather than the usual 2 or 3. Its going to throw the race wide open with reagard to possible winners as no one knows how many dogs each musher will run on each stage. They are allowed to enter 8 dogs and can run a maximum of 6 on each stage, stratagy and tactics will greatly come into play'. Several UK championship winning teams have been in training for the event and it has got mushers having to re think training and feeding routines ready for the race. Dryland mushing is a growing sport in the UK, over 300 teams currently race on a regualar basis and races can be found most weekends from september to march. The Wyedean Quest is being hosted by the newly formed Wyedean Mushing organisation and aims to get mushers to rethink the way they race, offer new styles of racing and promote the sport in the UK. The first musher is due to leave Speech House Hotel at 6.30pm, full details of trails can be seen at

74th Anniversary of Fur Rondy Racing
The Fur Rendezvous Racing celebrates its 74th anniversary. Catch all the excitement.
The races will start Friday at noon on the corner of Fourth Avenue and D Street. Eighteen teams will race 25 miles each day, three days in a row for a purse of the $75,000, the largest payout in Fur Rondy history.Two-time champion Streeper is signed up to defend his title. Click here for the start order. There will be local radio coverage by KHAR 590AM - Follow the daily races click here

Quest Mushers continue to roll in
Let's not forget about all those still on the trail. Each and every musher the comes to the start line deserves a big round of applause for a tough race like the Yukon Quest. Our hats off to all of you. For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Beads of Courage will follow the Iditarod Trail - This year the Iditarod Race will be allowing "Beads of Courage", a unique program for children coping with serious illnesses, to solicit volunteer mushers to carry beads in support of the Beads of Courage program at Providence Hospital Anchorage, and participating children’s hospitals across the nation. The Beads of Courage program is a resilience-based intervention designed to support and strengthen the protective resources in children coping with serious illness.

Mushers signed up for the Iditarod who participated in the Beads of Courage program are Ken Anderson, Martin Buser, Jeff King, John Baker, Ed Iten, Hugh Neff, Aaron Burmeister, DeeDee Jonrowe, Lance Mackey & Mitch Seavey.

For more information, check out the Beads of Courage website at

Stage 1 of the "North Hope 2009" - February 24, 2009 —The "North Hope 2009" sled dog race has completed its first stage. The race is comprised of 20 entrants. The International class, pairs a musher from the U.S.A with a musher from Russia and their dog team. In this class the American and Russian mushers alternate stages. There is also the Individual musher class and the Ski-joring class.

Seven years ago, the St. Nicholas parish started a kennel with the intent of giving their orphans a means to grow both emotionally and spiritually in addition to developing a solid work ethic. Anyone who witnessed the first day of the North Hope will attest to the fact that these children are growing, and are well on the way to becoming confident young adults. They have spent months preparing the dog teams, and indeed, they put together a world class event. Every detail, from course construction, to the creation of a top notch opening ceremony rested on their shoulders and they succeeded with flying colors.

Please join us in this adventure in human spirit, as these 20 entrants race across the Russia country side. For more information and daily race relts visit the North Hope official web site - click here

Sebastion Wins Quest!!!!
February 24, 2009; 1215 AKST (Fairbanks, Alaska) - Sebastian Schnuelle won the 2009 Yukon Quest this morning, arriving at the finish line in Fairbanks at 10:44 AM.

This is Schnuelle's first ever win of the Yukon Quest and was accomplished in record time. Schnuelle's official race time was 9 days 23 hours and 20 minutes, which beats the previous record set by Lance Mackey in 2007 by just over three hours (10 days, 2 hours, 37 minutes).

Hugh Neff crossed the finish line four minutes behind Schnuelle in second place with a time of 9 days, 23 hours, 24 minutes. Jon Little completed the top three arriving at 11:52 AM. The times posted by Neff and Little were also ahead of the previous record time.

For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Junior World Championship Wraps Up!
- 02/23/09 Anchorage, Alaska - Junior World Championships
From the one doggers to the seven dog class, many local kids spent the weekend outdoors having fun. Lots of fun.

First in the 1-dog class was Zack Barnhart, first in the two dog class - Rya Berringan, first in the 3 dog class was Andy Noble, first in the 5 dog class
was Tilly Cantor and the seven dogs class was Ben Kinvig. Congratulations to all the junior mushers.
Click here for complete 3 Day race results/ times

Ellis pulls out of Quest -
February 23, 2009; 1430 AKST (Mile 101, Alaska) - Mike Ellis arrived at the Circle City Checkpoint at 11:13 Monday morning after spending just over 32 hours on the trail from Eagle, Alaska. Ellis announced he was scratching from the race shortly after arriving, but no official reason has been reported at this time. Ellis is the seventh musher to scratch from the 2009 Yukon Quest. For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Hugh Neff penalized for trail deviation - February 22, 2009; 2100 AKST (Central, Alaska) - Hugh Neff has been assessed a two-hour penalty to be served at the final checkpoint; Two Rivers. Upon arrival at Central checkpoint, race officials were informed that Neff had been traveling on the road rather than following the trail route. The Race Marshal visually inspected the location where Neff left the trail and determined he had deviated from the trail for approximately five miles. Trail Procedure Rule number six of the official rules states that "all teams must follow the trail as marked or as instructed by the Race Marshal".  For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Didier Moggia 6th Musher to Scratch from Quest
- February 22, 2009; 1830 AKST (Circle City, Alaska) - Didier Moggia has scratched from the 2009 Yukon Quest. Moggia returned to Dawson City today after setting out toward Eagle on Saturday afternoon. Moggia is the sixth musher to scratch from this year's race. For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

84 years ago, the race to Nome was a bit different - Nenana, Alaska 02/22/09 - The 2009 Norman Vaughan Serum Run launches this morning in Nenana after receiving the ceremonial Serum from the Alaska Railroad. The trip commerates the 1925 serum run from Nenana to Nome bringing much needed medicine to the diptheria stricken people of Nome.

The small group of mushers and snow machine support will retrace the steps of the original racers stopping in villages along the trail, arriving tentatively in Nome on the 12th of March 2009, This year they carry the mission of "stroke prevention". Follow their progress along the trail with "SPOT" GPS tracking devices.

Click here for details

Fast trails for the Jr. World Championship Race - Anchorage, Alaska - The trails are fast and well packed for the Junior world Championship this weekend. Temperatures are a brisk 15-20 degrees (f) and beautiful blue skies have covered the event.

The Tudor Track is a buzz with Junior mushers just having fun. Laughing and sharing dog stories. Races
continue from February 20-22, (Fri-Sat-Sun) Friday dog painting at 10 am - Races Start at 11 am Saturday and Sunday check in time is 10-10:30 am race starts at 11 am. Come on out and cheer the kids on.

Click here for race results

Want to see more photos of the Junior World Championship? Visit Alaskan photographer, John Gomes web site - click here


What it takes to be a view

The McCabe Creek Dog Drop was completely consumed by fire just a few days after the final 2009 Yukon Quest and Yukon Quest 300 dog teams departed. McCabe Creek Farm is owned and operated by the Jerry and Cathy Kruse and their family and has been an Official Yukon Quest Dog Drop for over 20 years. Dating back to when the Yukon Quest Trail ran from Carmacks to Dawson City with no checkpoints in between, McCabe Creek is well known for the hospitality and generousity of the Kruse family and for the workshop that is cleared out to make room to house the mushers and veterinarians during their stay.Home-cooked food and a never-ending pot of coffee are hallmarks of McCabe Creek during the Yukon Quest and this welcoming atmosphere has enthralled many Yukon Quest mushers, Race Personnel and members of the media over the years.On Friday February 20, a fire broke out in the shop, and with firefighting personnel and equipment beyond range, the entire shop burned to the ground destroying the Kruse's workshop and generator shed.

photo courtesy of Yukon Quest

Some Yukon Arctic Ultra racers who follow the Yukon Quest Trail by human power, were at the McCabe Creek location when the fire began. Fortunately no people or animals were injured but the loss of the shop is a serious set-back for the Kruse family.The Yukon Quest organization sends our deepest concerns out to the entire Kruse family, thanks them for their continued support and incredible hospitality for over two decades and looks forward to helping out in any way we can to assist their efforts to replace their workshop and get McCabe Creek Farm back up and running as soon as possible.Anyone wanting to send expressions or contributions of support to the Kruse family can do so through the Whitehorse Yukon Quest office at #2-1109 First Ave., Whitehorse Yukon, Y1A 5G4, Canada.

Yukon Quest 2009 - Circle City - William Kleedehn (c) Copyright Peter Kamper
  • Kleedan Leads in Quest - February 20, 2009; 2300 AKST (Circle City, Alaska) - William Kleedehn continues to lead as the race crossed the Yukon / Alaska border. Kleedehn arrived in Circle City this evening at 10:46 PM local time. Hugh Neff and Jon Little are not far behind as both mushers departed Slaven's Roadhouse within three hours of the current leader. Sebastian Schnuelle and Brent Sass are currently in fourth and fifth place respectively. The two mushers were separated by only one minute as they left Eagle, Alaska on Saturday afternoon.

    The last team left left Dawson City at 1:42 PM local time on Saturday. As of the writing of this release, twelve teams have reached at least as far as Eagle.

    For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

    The worlds toughest open class sprint race! - Anchorage, Alaska - The 74th anniversary of the Fur Rondy racing Feb 27, 28, & March 1, 2009 with a guaranteed minimum $65,000 purse. The Open World Championship Race is held each February in conjunction with the Fur Rendezvous Festival. The race is organized and put on by ASDRA volunteers in partnership with Greater Anchorage Inc. Over 1000 hours of volunteer time and effort are required for this race starting on 4th Avenue in Downtown Anchorage. Here's the line up to date: Ed Wood, Heather Hardy, Arleigh Reynolds, Mari Wood, Gary Markley, Courtney Moore, Ken Chezik, Egil Ellis, Jacques Philip, Blayne "Bud" Streeper, Lina Gladh, Jason Dunlap, John Erhart, Curtis Erhart, and Ricky Taylor.

    Yukon Quest mushers and their dog teams will soon be stretched across nearly 300 miles of trail.
    The 5 front runners are in and out of Eagle Checkpoint, on their way to Slaven's Roadhouse and should reach Circle City some time close to midnight Saturday.Several other teams are resting in Eagle. A 4-hour mandatory stop was added at Eagle in 2008 but most teams remain in this favoured checkpoint longer. Eagle is off the beaten path with no road access through the winter. This means a quiet stop for mushers and their dogs which is usually welcomed after the sometimes frenetic pace of Dawson City.10 teams are in the area of the Forty Mile Hospitality Stop located at the confluence of the Fortymile and Yukon Rivers. [Note: the proper spelling of the townsite is two words - Forty Mile, while the river's name is spelled as one word - Fortymile.] This historic location was the first major settlement in the Yukon some 15 or 20 years before the Klondike Gold Rush and marks the turn off from Percy DeWolfe's original mail route (and the trail for the annual Percy DeWolfe Memorial Mail Race between Dawson City and Eagle in late March) along the Yukon River, and Yukon Quest teams ascend the Fortymile to the Taylor Highway and on in to Eagle via the land route. 4 teams are in motion between Dawson City and Forty Mile, with Iris Wood Sutton and Yuka Honda checking out early Saturday morning.The final 2 teams of Becca Moore and Didier Moggia will be able to depart from Dawson City early Saturday afternoon, and will trigger the breakdown of the Dawson City checkpoint. As the distance from Dawson City to Eagle is 150 miles, and teams are completely on their own without any villages or towns along this route, Yukon Quest veterinarians will remain in Dawson City until Sunday to ensure they are available should any teams decide to return.

    For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

    Rookie Josh Cadzow 5th to Scratch on Quest- February 20, 2009 (Whitehorse, Yukon) - Rookie Josh Cadzow left Dawson this morning after his mandatory lay over but returned to the check point shortly afterward. He has officially scratched from the race. Yukon musher Kyla Boivin headed out on the trail at 11:01 this morning followed by Luc Twedell at 11:30 and Colleen Robertia at 12:30 pm.

    For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

    Jackson Residents Travel to First Russian Stage Stop Sled Dog Race Teasley, Teasley and Havener share expertise with race to aid orphanage Jackson, Wyoming—February 20, 2009—Frank Teasley, owner of Jackson Hole Iditarod Sled Dog Tours and Director of the International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog Race (IPSSSDR), his wife, musher Stacey Teasley, and Jackson photographer Chris Havener are in Russia to participate in the first stage stop sled dog race there, North Hope 2009. The Teasleys and Havener will join IPSSSDR Chief Veterinarian Caroline Griffitts and IPSSSDR mushers Terry Adkins and Jean Wise, who also are assisting with the race, and Russian musher participants.The purpose of the race is to raise awareness of North Hope, an orphanage and kennel created by a monk and nun for the emotional and psychological rehabilitation of children. Sled dogs are traditionally used in Russia, and dogs are commonly used as therapy animals as well. The orphanage currently houses 20-24 boys, while the kennel holds 20-25 Siberian huskies and four Alaskan malamutes. The IPSSSDR group returned to Jackson from this year’s race finish in Park City, Utah, on February 11, only to pack their bags and leave for Russia a week later. “I believe this is a good cause,” Frank Teasley says. “They need our help so we are going to race, consult and support them.”The goals for the North Hope 2009 race are as follows (from the rules – a translation from the Russian): popularization and development of sled dog sports in Russia; strengthening world relations in sled dog sport; development of the sport canine organizations’ cooperation on the territory of Russian Federation; bringing up a new generation of mushers and merely young people whose life principles are based on love, care, and fairness.The U.S. group will teach the orphanage about dog care at a seminar covering such issues as nutrition, foot care, common injuries and examination. They will help facilitate the race—bringing Frank Teasley’s experience from the IPSSSDR to the race in addition to the Teasleys’ mushing skills. The Teasleys and Havener will return to the U.S. March 5. For additional information, visit (the top half of the site is in Russian but an English translation is provided midway).

Dan Kaduce using the foot ointment on the dogs while they rest, keeping their feet healthy is key to keeping dogs in the race photo by Jodi Bailey

Back of the Pack arrives in Dawson with attitude
The final two mushers made their way into Dawson together early Friday morning. Becca Moore arrived into the chute at 1:20 AM. She said she was doing great. 'I'm not really setting any speed records,' she conceeded, but with her great attitude and happy dogs, Becca looked like a champion.
Didier Moggia arrived one hour later with a great looking dog team. He fed his team snacks and celebrated with his family. When asked how it felt to be in Dawson, Didier said, 'Strange!'As they arrived, Dan Kaduce and his partner and handler, Jodi Bailey were inside the checkpoint preparing for Dan's 4:05 AM departure. Jodi loaded up on baked goods at the Percy de Wolfe bake sale for Dan while he checked run times into the 40 Mile hospitality stop. He was positive, upbeat and ready to hit the trail.

For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Dalton Pulls Out of Quest
- February 19, 2009; 1130 PST (Dawson City, YT) - David Dalton scratched from the 2009 Yukon Quest Thursday evening. Dalton made the decision that his dogs were sick and unable to continue the race. For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Hans Gatt Quest Over Dawson City Feb 19, 15:15 YST -Three time champion Hans Gatt has scratched from the 2009 Yukon Quest for strategic reasons. Hans said after watching his team in the first five hundred miles of the Yukon Quest he believes he should refocus his efforts on the upcoming Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. 'Right now, I have a team that can win Iditarod. If I continue with the race and maybe win, I would not,' said Gatt from his Dawson City campsite.'The Yukon Quest has been good to me and is probably my favorite race. But, I have won three times so the victory does not mean as much,' Gatt explained. When asked why Iditarod victory was important, Gatt replied,'because I haven't won yet. It's the only race I have wanted to win and haven't.' Gatt acknowledged that he has not had much luck in previous Iditarod runs, but he said last year he had a great race. 'I learned what I have to do to win,' said Gatt. 'I know I can win the Iditarod.'Gatt plans to return home today and then prepare his team for the Iditarod start in a few weeks. 'I will see you in Fairbanks for the finish, and maybe even a few checkpoints' he said. He will continue to follow the progress of Jamaican musher, Newton Marshall who is running a team of his dogs. 'He has a great team right now,' said Gatt of Newton. 'I watched them come in and they are all looking energetic and smooth. Of course, they are getting more sleep than any race they've ever been in since Newton is resting more.'The three time Yukon Quest champion has mixed emotions about the scratch. 'It's one of those compromises. I know it is the right thing to do and I am happy with my decision,' Gatt explained, 'but dropping out goes against what I believe. You should finish what you start.'Hans said his announcement was strategically timed after the departure of the frontrunners. 'They do not know I scratched.' he said with a smile. 'They don't need to know.' For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Gatt Scratches from Quest - February 19, 2009; 1400 PST (Dawson City, YT) - Hans Gatt has officially scratched from the 2009 Yukon Quest at 1:41 PM this afternoon. Gatt was scheduled to depart Dawson City at that time, but instead shocked those at the starting gate when he did not restart as expected. Gatt will be giving a statement and be available to media at 3:00 PM at the Visitor Information Centre in Dawson City. Meanwhile, Jon Little, William Kleedehn and Hugh Neff are all back on the trail as they make their way toward their next checkpoint in Eagle, Alaska. Sebastian Schnuelle will depart at 2:29 PM local time. The three front-runners left the campground in Dawson City this morning. Little departed first at 10:51 AM with a team of fresh looking dogs. Kleedehn departed next at 11:06 with 12 dogs. His dogs were upbeat and ready to hit the trail. Neff was next leaving right on time with 10 dogs. Race Marshal Doug Grilliot and Head Veterinarian Kathleen McGill were on hand to watch the leaders depart. "The dogs are looking good, really good," said Dr. McGill. "The teams came into Dawson looking good and they are leaving looking good. Sebastian Schnuelle, and Brent Sass will leave early this afternoon followed by Michelle Phillips at 7:44 tonight and Warren Palfrey and Martin Buser starting at 10:14 PM.

For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

Centennial Team at 2009 Iditarod
As a part of the Iditarod Trail Centennial celebration, Dan Seavey will run his "Centennial Team" at the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Race in Anchorage on March 7. In fact, he will be first out of the starting gate with Centennial signs on his sled and dogs to remind spectators about the Centennial. The Knik museum lent him a historic freight sled for the event.

The Alaska Association for Historic Preservation and the Iditarod Trail Historic Trail Alliance will host an Iditarod Sled Dog Race Kick off Party at Cottage 25 on March 7, during the start of the 2009 Iditarod Sled Dog Race.

The historic Alaska Engineering Commission Cottage is located at 245 West 3rd Ave. near the team staging area. Stop by the cottage throughout the day to warm up, drink hot chocolate and discuss the race. The event is free for members of the organizations and $5 for other who would like to attend.

Visit the web site at

Jumble ice on the Quest back in December

Quest Trail Conditions Dawson to Fairbanks - February 19, 2009; 0130 PST (Dawson City, YT) - Mushers gathered in Dawson City on Wednesday evening to receive an update on the second half of the 2009 Yukon Quest trail from former Quest champion John Schandelmeier and the Canadian Rangers. Mushers and trail breakers alike have praised the conditions on the first half of the trail, saying it has been the best they have seen in years. On the Alaska side of the trail mushers are expecting to experience some severe jumble ice and conditions that may test the teams.Trail breakers are doing their best to ensure the second half will remain as safe and consistent as possible for mushers and dogs. They have ensured a solid base and well-marked trail; however, there are many conditions that cannot be controlled. When the Yukon Quest restarts on Thursday morning, Jon Little will lead the pack out of Dawson City at 10:50 AM (PST). William Kleedehn will follow 16 minutes later at 11:06 AM and Hugh Neff will start at 11:33. These top three teams have a two hour advantage over the fourth musher to leave Dawson City, Hans Gatt, who will restart at 1:41 PM.

For Yukon Quest official race updates Click here

IFSS World Winter Championships Drug Free - By Sally O’Sullivan Bair - Borlänge, Sweden – IFSS (International Federation of Sleddog Sports) - Vice President Bernard Pépin has announced that all the doping control tests preformed at the recent IFSS World Championships in Daaquam (Quebec) Canada were negative. Testing was done on both canines and humans in compliance with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) guidelines. Read more....

KUAC Yukon Quest Reports: KUAC is on the trail with the Yukon Quest. Listen to their Wednesday February 18 report - Listen

Leonhard Seppala

SEPPALA HERITAGE GRANT - POSTED 02/11/09 - In keeping with the legacy of Leonhard Seppala and the qualities demonstrated by him in his lifetime, the Seppala Heritage Grant has been established to support and promote those persons demonstrating a commitment to work with, train and race sled dogs, and who demonstrate the qualities of generosity of spirit, courage, integrity and love for the dogs, land and people of Alaska. In 2005 the grant was seeded by the Seppala Family with a $10,000 donation and a four-year commitment of $10,000 per year per recipient.

Mitch Seavey, Iditarod Champion and winner of the 2008 All Alaska Sweepstakes, has graciously donated the $10,000 for the 2010 Seppala Heritage Grant. It is the hope of the Seppala Family and the selection committee that other persons or organizations will donate to this charitable grant with money or services, thereby increasing the outreach potential of this grant. Grant funds are administrated by Iditarod National Historic Trail, Inc., a private, nonprofit organization with 501, C-3 federal tax status. Persons eligible for the grant include any youth, junior musher or rookie who aspires to the senior Iditarod race for the first time, and who demonstrates the qualities outlined above. Financial need will also be considered.
Click here for details & Application form

International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog Race Mushes through Jackson

Eight-day event features 20 teams, 12 towns, two states, and over 300 dogs
Jackson, Wyoming—January 30, 2009—Jackson’s Town Square became a race chute for world-class dog sled teams today as 20 teams left the starting line to begin the eight-day 2009 International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog Race (IPSSSDR). Crowds lined the street for a glimpse of the dogs, but for those who couldn’t see the starting line, a giant screen with a live feed provided a bird’s-eye view as Jackson’s Mayor Mark Barron drove the first team from the starting line followed by Pedigree’s dignitary driver, Anne Herrington. Competing teams included three-time IPSSSDR winner Melanie Shirilla from Lincoln, Mont., the first woman to win the IPSSSDR and winner of the 2002, 2006 and 2008 IPSSSDR; the “winningest musher in the world,” Jeff King from Denali Park, Alaska; and the youngest musher to enter the race, 15-year-old Krista Halsnes from Steamboat Springs, Colo.Mushers and dogs raced through town on a three-mile snow-covered track specially created by the Town of Jackson Public Works department for the event and finished at Snow King Resort, where IPSSSDR title sponsor Pedigree hosted a free-to-the-public reception. The event concluded with Jackson Hole’s Winter Carnival celebration complete with torchlight parade, dancing, and fireworks.
For additional information visit

Christine Roalaf heads out on the Don Bowers 300
photo by Donna Quante
Mushers head out on the popular
Don Bowers race!
Eight mushers lined up for the noon 200 mile Don Bowers sled dog race, fourteen mushers on the 300 miler. From the initial dismal prospect the weather has cooperated enough to give the popular Don Bowers race a trail “safe for dogs and safe for humans”. It’s come together in the last few days. Much of the trail is best ever and the short re-route sections are acceptable by Iditarod and Quest standards. There are a couple places mushers need to stay alert and drag a foot…or both feet. Recent light snow has covered the last week’s ice and will be kind to dogs feet. +98% of the trail will have positive holding. There is scant overflow and no open water. 1500 markers for 105 miles will assure a minimum average of 10 per mile. Weather forecast is favorable.

For complete race updates - click here

Photos of the don Bowers - Click Here

The 25th Anniversary of the Tustumena 200 race starts Saturday - January 31, 2009 at 11:00 am the race purse $20,000

Visit the Tustumena official web site

IPSSSDR will hit the trail Jan 30th -
Jackson, Wyoming—January 29, 2009—Twenty teams will leave the starting line in Jackson's historic Town Square at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, January 30 for the start of the 2009 International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog Race (IPSSSDR). This year's roster includes three previous IPSSSDR champions: three-time champion Melanie Shirilla from Lincoln, Mont., won in 2008, 2006 and 2002; Wendy Davis from Lander, Wyo., in 2007; and Jeff King of Denali Park, Alaska, 1999.

Two Teams Withdraw from IPSSSDR Due to Injuries - Jackson, Wyoming - January 28, 2009 - Two teams have withdrawn from the 2009 International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog Race (IPSSSDR) because of injuries received in recent races, announced Race Director Frank Teasley. Jamie Nelson from Togo, Minn., withdrew with a shoulder injury, and Emil Inauen of Switzerland sustained an injury racing in France's Grand Odyssee. Alaska’s champion musher Jeff King will enter two teams in the race to replace Nelson and Inauen. “It’s very unfortunate that Jamie and Emil won’t be racing with us this year,” said Teasley. “However, the addition of Jeff King will certainly bring additional excitement to the race.” King’s victories include not only the 1,049-mile Iditarod Sled Dog Race in 1993, 1996, 1998, and 2006, but also more than two dozen first place finishes in races all across Alaska. During the past 20 years, the champion musher has logged more than 100,000 miles on a dog sled. The International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog Race begins in Jackson, Wyo., on Friday, January 30, 2009, and continues through 10 Wyoming communities before finishing in Park City, Utah, on February 7. For additional information visit

8 Withdraw, 32 are in the running!
January 26, 2009 (Whitehorse, YT & Fairbanks, AK) - Each year in the weeks leading up to the Yukon Quest, the field of competitors changes as some mushers are forced to withdraw for various reasons including personal injury, conflict with work commitments, financial and training challenges. The following is a list of mushers who have withdrawn from the race since January 1st;
Jesse Beebe, Simon McLoughlin, Sonny Lindner, Simi Morrison, Scott Smith, Peter Bartlett, Lance Mackey and Mike King. The current numbers of entrants planned to be at the 2009 start line on February 14th in Whitehorse, Yukon following these withdrawals is 32. Visit the Yukon Quest Offical web site - Click Here

Yes, the T-200 is still on Jan 31st!
After consulting with several local mushers and our Cracker Jack trail team the Tustumena 200 board has decided to move forward with all 3 of our races. We have a few changes to the trail, first the start and finish will now be in Clam Gulch. The start will be at the Clam Shell Lodge (Sterling Highway mile 118) with the finish just north on the east side of the Sterling Highway.
The 200 milers will run out to Caribou Lake and back, have an 8 hour layover at the Clam Shell and run the course again. The 100 milers will run out to Caribou Lake with a 4 hour layover and back to the finish, the Jr’s will run out to the Cabin Hoppers Pad with a 3 hour layover and return to the finish. Read more ..

37 mushers set to run the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon January 25th, 2009 - Duluth, Minnesota
The John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon commemorates the life of John Beargrease, the son of a Chippewa chief who delivered mail by dog sled along Lake Superior’s rugged North Shore in the late 19th century. John Beargrease’s weekly deliveries along the North Shore played a pivotal role providing a lifeline for communities and commerce. On January 27, the world will be watching as the Beargrease continues the tradition of honoring John Beargrease’s character and commitment—and to celebrate life along the North Shore. Launched in 1981, the Beargrease is the premier sled dog race of the Upper Midwest, drawing world-class sled dog teams from across the nation and around the globe. The race kicks off in Duluth, Minnesota. The Beargrease is the longest and most challenging of sled dog events in the lower 48 states.The Beargrease is widely respected as the sled dog race to prepare national and international sled dog teams – and is a qualifying race for Alaska’s long distance Iditarod.
Race Updates - click here

Don't miss the 2009 IPSSSDR!
January 30th - February 7th, 20092009 International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog Race Hosts Teams from Switzerland, Canada, Scotland and the U.S—click here for roster

Klondike 300 ON HOLD!-
Do the dance!!!!!
The temperatures have dropped to a comfortable 16 degress at Big Lake, zero at Yentna Station and -7 at Deshka Landing. Reports that Angel Haven is still a bit slushy but starting to refreeze.

It looks like all of you that did the "cold dance", it's working, now lets throw in a "snow dance" and we'll have it made.

The Klondike 300 will NOT go on saturday January 24th. A later date will be decided.

Kusko Wraps up!
All mushers are in. Congratulations to all the mushers. Ron Underwood came in just after midnight Wednesday morning. His finish time is correct but the Tuluksak and Qwethluk times will be corrected as we gather the information.
For the final race results Click here

Larger Venue Means Greater Access to the 2009 Iditarod Mushers Banquet

For the first time in Iditarod History, the Iditarod Trail Committee will host its annual Wells Fargo Mushers’ Drawing Banquet in a venue that seats up to 2200 people; the new Dena’ina Civic and Convention Center in downtown Anchorage. It all happens on March 5th 2009. The Wells Fargo Mushers’ Drawing Banquet has great significance in meaning, as all mushers must be present to “draw” their race position prior to the race start on Saturday, March 7, 2009. The banquet has evolved over the years and the demand for tickets to this spectacular event has meant that many race fans could not attend because tickets usually sold out well in advance. Read more.....

The 26th Yukon Quest Start & Draw Banquet will be held February 12th, 2009 in Whitehorse, Yukon. The event is one of the highlights of the Yukon Quest and it sells out quickly. Media wishing to attend should purchase their tickets for the event as soon as possible to ensure availability. Tickets cost $75 and are available on a first come, first serve basis. For more information, please contact Wendy Morrison at the Whitehorse office, 867-668-4711.

Interview with Braxton Peterson CB300

7th Place finish

2009 © Photo coutersty of La Grande Odyssee'
La Grande Odyssee
Stage 7 1st part:
Date : January 17th 2009
Val Cenis – Base Polaire (40 km) Saturday at 4:45pm, the 7th stage of La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc left the center of Val Cenis Lanslebourg. The Haute Maurienne Vanoise Trophy teams opened the trails. The main street of Val Cenis Lanslebourg, 400m long, received plenty of snow for the competition and was surrounded by thousands of enthusiastic people who especially came for this unique winter sport event. Petter Karlsson of Sweden, boasted of his confidence for the rest of the competition. Emile Inauen, the current leader of the race, will do everything to secure his advantage on the 3 Norwegian teams who should feel even more comfortable in this second part of La Grande Odyssee Savoie Mont Blanc, much less “alpine” than the first one.

Click here for daily race results

IFSS Races Take Off in Daaquam, Quebec

Although trail conditions are not ideal, reported as hard, fast and crusted over, race day went on as scheduled. Janvier Beaudon placed first in the 54 Km mid distance race and Hege Ingebrigtsen placed first in the 16 km 8 dog sprint races

More than 400 teams and 2500 dogs coming from 5 continents are attending the 9 days of compétitions. A total of 18 events in the sprint, mid-distance nordic pulka and skijöring categories that will be presented.
For complete race daily results of the IFSS events
: Click Here

Tustumena Postponed until January 31
Due to poor trail conditions the Tustumena 200 Board of Directors has decided to postpone the 2009 races for one week. The race will now start January 31 with vet checks and mushers meeting to be held January 30th at the Soldotna Sports Center.

Musher Entries will be extended. With the postponement the T-200 the Board of Directors will also extend the entry deadline one week. All entries must be received or postmarked by midnight January 23, 2009. The online registration will stay open thru January 23rd. Mushers may also receive there entry fee back if they decide to withdraw.

Daaquam, Quebec is hosting the 2009 International Federation of Sleddog Sports (IFSS) winter World Championships in sprint, mid-distance, nordic skijöring and pulka categories. January 16th to January 25th for the first time in history of winter sleddog sports in the province of Quebec, Canada.

Taking place on the actual site of the business enterprise Villégiature et Pourvoirie Daaquam along the Daaquam river located in the village St-Just-de-Bretenières, in the touristic region of Chaudière-Appalaches. Trails used for the competitions cover the territories of two different counties, which are the county of Montmagny and the Etchemins, passing through the Appalachian Regional Park. Imagine a pure and enchant landscape, with large spaces of peat land (traditional North American tundra relief), iced lakes and rivers and snowy trees in the Boreal forest.

More than 400 teams and 2500 dogs coming from 5 continents are expected during 9 days of compétitions.
It is a total of 18 events in the sprint, mid-distance nordic pulka and skijöring categories that will be presented.

Purse is set at 55 000 $ (40 000$ in purse for the winners and 15 000$ as a support for foreign participants). Medals, produced by hand by a local artist, will be distributed to the winners. Click Here for race information

Update: Kuskokwim 300 Still On Hold! - REPORTED 1/16/09
Race start postponed again due to weather delays. There will be no dog races saturday. K300 and Bogus Race Musher Meeting 10:00 am saturday at the Headquarters - Long House. Lunch will be provided for the Mushers at the meeting. Akiak Dash at this time is also postponed - possibly Sunday or Monday. Keep checking the website for the latest updates.

  • Kuskokwim 300 Start - postponed
  • Bogus 150 Start - postponed
  • Akiak Dash Start - postponed

Update: Klondike 300 On Hold till Monday!- REPORTED by TDaily 1/15/09 23:30
Mushers and race officials met late thursday to discuss the race conditions due to heavy rain and extreme warm temperatures. The decision was to start Monday at 10 am. Race volunteers are planning on running the rivers to get a hands on trail report.
We'll keep you posted!

Update: Klondike 300
- REPORTED by TDaily 1/15/09
We just received word from the Klondike 300 is still on for Saturday January 17th..Race official, Ben Kleinenberg, President of the Big Lake Aurora Lions Club, (Race sponsors & organizers of the Klondike 300) said "it will be warm and wet. It's not raining at Yentna station but pouring rain at angel haven lodge". Not the ideal conditions, but still doable with a good amount of snow still holding.

The Klondike has 14 teams signed up so far:
Cim Smyth Big Lake, Alaska ( defending champion x 3 ), Abby West, Two Rivers, Alaska, Becca Moore Willow, Alaska, Steve Geiger Montana Creek, Alaska, Jessie Royer, Fairbanks, Alaska, Jessica Hendricks Two Rivers, Alaska. Matt Hayshida, Willow, Aaska. Dan Kaduce, Fairbanks, Alaska.Louis Bisssonnette, Two Rivers, Alaska, Carmen Perzechino, Sterling, Alaska, Wade Marrs, Wasilla, Alaska, Ryan Redington, Wasilla, Alaska, Jen Seavey, Sterling, Alaska, and Ray Jr. Redington, Wasilla, Alaska. We will keep you posted.

Follow the Klondike 300 race - Click Here

Races face warm weather this weekend across Alaska -
REPORTED by TDaily 1/15/09
What a difference a day makes. Weather conditions have dramatically changed in Alaska. From 50 below to 40 above across most of the state. Standing water ontop of glare ice, winds reaching 110 miles per hour. This is causing some question on trail conditions and making race officials nervous. The Kuskokwim 300 is no exception.
The musher’s meeting has been postponed until friday. Currently, all Kusko races are still scheduled to start on time. The board will meet again Thursday night to decide whether to postpone the races. We will keep you posted.

Watch Mushers Finish the Copper Basin 300

Photo Courtesy of LaGrande Odyssee © 2009
Over the River & Through the Alps - Grand Odyssee Into Stage 4 Sigrid Ekran leds in Overall results.
1st day of Stage 4 : les Gets/Praz de Lys Sommand/Morzine/Champery 136 km (Domaine des Portes du Soleil) Start : 9:30am Read More...

Race Results click here

Since the first event in January 2005, La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc (LGO) has been the most difficult international sled-dog race in the world due to the type of mountains it runs through.
Each year it brings together 25 of the best mushers in the world: Along with their Alaskan and Siberian huskies, they cover more than 800 km of Savoie and Haute Savoie and climb more than 25,000 m through the massifs of the Franco-Swiss region of Portes du Soleil and along the valley of Haute Maurienne Vanoise via Megève and Notre Dame de Bellecombe.With the legendary Iditarod and Yukon Quest, La Grande Odyssée Savoie-Mont-Blanc has established itself as the only major sled-dog race to be both a long distance race and a stage race. This "Great White" adventure also includes a host of programs, parties, festivals and conferences which set the pace for life in 27 Franco-Swiss ski resorts every year in January.

Klondike 300
The Klondike 300 starts Saturday January 17th, 1 pm (AST) at the Tug Bar, Knik, Alaska (end of Knik-Goose Bay Road) The weather forecast is for mostly cloudy with a chance of snow. Lows 5 to 15. Highs 15 to 25. Lets hope the rain coming down in Anchorage this week does not extend to the Knik/Big Lake area. Mushers signed up to date are: Cim Smyth Big Lake, Alaska ( defending champion x 3 ), Abby West, Two Rivers, Alaska, Becca Moore Willow, Alaska, Steve Geiger Montana Creek, Alaska, Jessie Royer, Fairbanks, Alaska, and Jessica Hendricks Two Rivers, Alaska. Follow the race - Click Here

Kusko 300 Starts Jan 16th

Eighteen mushers have signed up for the 2009 Kuskokwim 300. Race officials report that the Kuskowkim 300 trail has lots of snow and is in good condition in most areas. There has been some drifting, and racers can expect some softer snow in the Aniak area. There are numerous moose, especially in the area between Bogus Creek and Kalskag. In those areas, the moose have decided to stick close to the trail and are sometimes reluctant to get off the trail when approached.

The musher line up is as follows
: Ron Underwood, Mike Williams Jr., DeeDee Jonrowe, Jeff King, Mitch Seavey, Dave DeCaro, Hugh Neff,Sebastian Schnuelle, Martin Buser,Richie Diehl, Dallas Seavey, Quinn Iten, Ed Iten, Aaron Burmeister, Pete Kaiser, Jackie Larson, John Baker and Ken Anderson.
Follow the race Click here

Seeley Lake 300 Canceled - Lincoln, MT
Seeley Lake 300 race officials reported to us that the race has been canceled due to heavy rain and warm weather.

Beads of Courage
The Kuskokwim 300 Race Committee and Northland Services are encouraging 2009 mushers to participate in the Beads of Courage Program by carrying beads with them on the 2009 K300 race and by signing note cards for children coping with serious illness. To learn more about this program visit their web site at

photo courtesy of la Grande Oydessee'
20 mushers, 300 DOGS, LINE-UP

Nearly twenty dog-teams will be setting off on the 11th January for a race worthy of one of Kerouac’s or Jack London’s adventures. Mushers from a all kinds of horizons will be taking part in this race that has now been granted official approval by becoming a ‘qualifier’ for the two most famous mushing races in the world, the West Yukon and the Iditarod. 20 mushers, all with eclectic personalities and impressive track-records. Some like Daniel Rao, or the French Daniel Juillaguet, juggling their love for ‘mushing’ with their respective careers: the Italian is a business man, and the Frenchman (from the Jura) a physiotherapist.
Read more.....

IPSSSDR Field Filled
Sled dog teams from Switzerland, Canada and the U.S. sign up for 2009 raceJackson, Wyoming – November 17, 2008 – The roster for the 2009 International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog race is officially filled announced Race Director Frank Teasley. Some 20 teams from the U.S., Canada and Switzerland have signed up, and Teasley has begun a waiting list of additional potential entrants. The 2009 race is slated for January 30 through February 7, and will begin in Jackson, Wyo., and continue through 10 Wyoming towns before ending in Park City, Utah."After 14 years, the IPSSSDR has become the race in the mushing world," said Teasley. "The enthusiasm mushers have shown for our race is a testament to the outstanding support the race receives from town sponsors, host families, the race staff, and our title sponsor, Pedigree Food for Dogs."The 2009 race took economic measures to ensure mushers would sign up during the height of the recent spike in gasoline prices by offering a $500 gas voucher to all teams who leave the starting line in Jackson. Other changes to the 2009 IPSSSDR include over $80,000 in additional cash prizes for mushers registered in the PEDIGREE Musher Support program for a total of potential cash earnings from the race of over $160,000. The International Pedigree Stage Stop Sled Dog Race was founded in 1996 by Frank Teasley to make sled dog racing more accessible to the public. For more information, visit the race website at

Mushers signed up: 1. Stacey Teasley Wyoming 2.Terry Adkins, Montana 3. Lloyd Gilbertson, Michigan 4. Mary Gilbertson, Michigan 5. Ted Schanen, Michigan 6. Grant Beck, Yellowknife NWT 7. Emil Inauen, Switzerland 8. Bruce Magnusson, Michigan 9. Melanie Shirilla, Montana 10. Doug Swingley, Montana 11. Sam Perrino, Yellowknife NWT 12. Dennis Laboda, Minnesota 13. Jerry Bath, Wyoming 14. Sandy Burke, British Columbia 15. Sean Hard, Montana 16. Dennis Tremblay, Quebec 17. Jarle Halsnes, Colorado 18. Jason Smith, Ontario 19. John Barron, Montana 20. Jamie Nelson, Minnesota

Junior Cantwell Classic Draws 6 Mushers
The Junior Cantwell Classic is set for January 9th to 11th. Junior musher race 8 dogs, 60 miles, from Cantwell to Brushkana and back running mostly along the Denali Highway. Mushers signed up for the 2009 Junior Cantwell Classic are Merideth Mapes, Kristen Crain, Anitra Winkler, Abby Brooks, Skipper Stitt, and Skeeter Stitt. Click here for details

Calling all Junior Mushers to the Junior Quest
The Junior Quest in Fairbanks, Alaska is Feb 7-8th, 2009. Right now there's only 2 junior mushers signed up. The race officials need at least 5 junior mushers to hold the race.To sign up or find out more information go to their web site:

The Junior Yukon Quest is held in early February for youth ages 14-17. The trail takes the drivers and their dog teams down the Yukon Quest trail to Twin Bears for a mandatory 8 hour rest and then returns along the same trail to North Pole. Here the drivers have a mandatory 4 hour rest which requires the drivers to practice and display their camping skills for the race judges. After this 4 hour rest the teams proceed to the finish line in Fairbanks.

The Junior Yukon Quest is intended to mimic a mid distance race in the span of 135 miles, giving the junior mushers experience in as many of the elements of a longer race as possible. Towards this end the junior mushers are required to carry much of the same mandatory equipment as mushers in the Yukon Quest and the YQ300, they will have a food drop at Twin Bears and the second mandatory layover is intended to force the drivers to set up camp in the middle of the run. Instead of a simple out and back trail, this adds one more element requiring the mushers to calculate the food and supplies required to set up camp along the trail, interrupt the rhythm of the team, get them fed and bedded down for a bit of rest and then rally the team once again for the final run into the finish line.

For more information:

2009 Knik 200 Start
by Donna Quante

Update: Anderson Takes the Knik!!!! Reported by Helen Hegener/Northern Light Media
Ken Anderson moves to the front of the pack winiing the 2009 Knik 200 with an official time of 11:00. Ten minutes later Ray Redington rolled in taking second place looking over his shoulder. Santos 3rd, Barnett 4th. Mitch Seavey 5th. Thirteen mushers have finshed the Knik 200 as of 2 pm today. For complete race updates click here

For more information about the Knik 200 check out Helen's Knik 200 Blog

Update: Barnett & Anderson Lead The Knik 200 -
8:30 1/04/09 Mushers huddle together along the trail as they push to finish this bitter cold race. Teams started arriving into Skwentna last night around 7 pm. Mike Barnett was the first to arrive in Skwentna at 19:00:22 with 14 dogs, followed by Ken Anderson with a time of 19:31:05 with 12 dogs. After they complete their 6 hour layover in Skwentna their times will be adjusted to even out the time differentail from the start line. For complete updates click here

Knik 200 Photos by Mary Dillingham - Click Here

photo by Mary Dillingham
Knik 200 gets underway this weekend
Extreme weather will be a factor in the Knik 200 this year. Mushers must take extra precautions to prevent frostbite on their dogs and themselves as temperatures plunge to minus 20 with a north wind of 10-15 mph predicted on the mostly flat river run sled dog race. This is a good test for mushers who have signed up for this race as a qualifer for bigger, longer races like the Yukon Quest and the Iditarod. Mushers signed up: Angie Taggart, Kathleen Fredrick, Robert Sexton, Tom Schonberger, Paul Gebhardt, Kristy Berington, Scott Janssen, Karin Hendrickson, Sarah Spinola, Gerry Willomitzer, Kyla Johnson, Matt Hayashida, Joe Pawelek, Anna Berrington, Mike Barnett, Mitch Seavy, Jake, Lysyshn, Ray Redington, Jr., Ryan Redington, Wade Marrs , Jessie Royer, Robert Bundtzen, Jake Berkowitz, Emil Churchin, Mark Sleightholme, Carmin Perzechino, Bruce Linton, Mike Santos, Scott Smith, Dallas Seavy, Russ Bybee, Therese Bartlett, Cynthia Barrand, Michael Suprenant, Allen Peck, Ken Anderson, Mushers withdrawn - Paul Charron, Cym Smyth - Leo ____- Lou Packer, Sebastian Schnulle, Jesse Bebee, for more information about the Knik 200 - click here

Knik 200 Photos by Mary Dillingham - Click Here

More 2008 news? Read more.....


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