North Wapiti Iditarod 2000 Journal
December 26, 1999
What a week of ups and downs it has been. First off, my computer completely crashed on
Sunday - luckily I had the laptop that I'm taking up to Alaska, so I was still able to get
my 'fix' of surfing and emails. By Monday night, thanks to my very kind brother in law,
Kelly, I had it back and running (I did lose my email address book and a number of other
things though!). Maybe this time I'll learn to back up my stuff - but I doubt it!
On Monday the computer filled up with messages from friends in Alaska - they had
SNOW!!! Heaps and heaps of snow! I started rushing around like a chicken with it's head
chopped off, making the final plans for our departure on December 26. Then on Wednesday
the computer was again filled up by the same friends, but with bad news - RAIN! Seems that
a 'Pineapple Express' weather front moved into Alaska dumping tons of warm moisture on
them. In the Anchorage, Wasilla, Willow area, it was warm and wet enough that they lost
most of the snow that arrived just days before. On Thursday, after talking to all sorts of
folks in Alaska we made the decision to postpone the trip north for 1 week. It really
isn't all that bad for us. I have some time to deal with more last minute details and we
are still getting some pretty good quad runs in on the dogs.
Speaking of the dogs - I can honestly say that I have never seen them look better. They
are strong, sassy, and happy! Earlier this week I made the final cuts and selected the 20
dogs that are going with us to Alaska. It was hard - especially the last 3 cuts of Sammie,
Visa, and Mork. I'm very lucky to have this kind of depth in our kennel! The list of the
twenty can be found at our new link The Team.
Christmas was basically a 'non-event' around here this year. My Mom and brother, Jim
were up a little over a week ago and we opened presents and had a turkey dinner then.
Christmas Eve found us out on the trails. We are running a lot of roads lately, so we got
to run by lots of house decked out in lights for the holidays. It was kind of like a
slower, less fancy version of the trips driving through town in the family car looking at
lights on Christmas Eve that we did when I was a kid. Some of the neighbors were out and
about on the roads, almost all stopped to roll down their windows and wish us a Merry
Christmas. One of the families all piled into their car when we went by and all came out
to take some pictures and wish us a Merry Christmas! Of course, that big, bright, gorgeous
moon that has been around since December 22 made an appearance too. All and all, a pretty
neat Christmas Eve. Christmas Day was pretty much the same. The dogs got extra big
breakfasts, although I did forget to pass out the pig's ears and salmon chunks that Santa
was so kind to leave them - guess that will have to be done today!
We were very lucky last week to have my brother come back up for 4 days to help out. He
was a lifesaver - running to town for dog food, doing banking, helping out in the yard. I
can sure see how a full time handler would be a pretty cool thing to have! Actually
though, I rather just have a maid and a cook - I enjoy the yard chores - it's all the
other things I don't like! Maybe when we win the lottery :)
I hope that all of you had a Merry Christmas!
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