North Wapiti Siberian
Iditarod 2008 - Tales from the Trail
March 1, 2008
Spider Is Back In!
Those of you watching the Ceremonial Start might
have noticed that little Spidey Pants (as she is affectionately
called) was running lead with superstar Dasher this morning.
Now, some of you may be saying how nice that is that Spidey was
able to participate in some way in the Race - however, no dog
that has not cleared the pre race screening tests is allowed to
participate in the Race in any way. So what gives, you ask???
WELL - I got a phone call from a rather stressed Dr. Baetsle at
the Big Lake Clinic yesterday after the Open House. As
impossible as this all seems - there is NOTHING wrong with
Spider!!!! Never was!!! It seems that there was a glitch in
their blood machine that caused Spider's results to appear
abnormal. Thankfully, the Clinic had also forwarded some of
Spidey's blood to an outside lab and when the tests didn't agree
with the in house works, investigations began. It's a long
story, but Dr. Baetsle felt completely confident approving
Spider to run Iditarod after all the new information was
gathered. He phoned Dr. Stu Nelson, head vet for Iditarod and
explained the whole situation to him. Stu felt an exception was
mandated in this situation (all dogs need to be 'declared' as
part of the team the Wednesday before the race) and this morning
gave Spider approval to race. I did the 'happy dance' the whole
way back to the dog truck!!
Of course, X is bummed, but he is a young boy and there will be
many races for him down the road. He also did a great job on the
Ceremonial run today, which he thought was a blast. He was
making the most bizarre noises as the team was lead up into the
chute today!! He was very excited by the crowds and excitement.
We had a blast today. Lots of friends and family were around to
help out. Jamie West road my second sled for me. The dogs roared
out of the chute. Unfortunately, we did run over a race
volunteer 3 blocks into the run, but what was she thinking run
out in front of charging dog team? I honestly didn't think she
was really going to run across in front of me, so I didn't get
on my brake till the last second. Spider and Dasher each went a
different direction around her, knocking her off her feet. I
stopped to find out if she was okay and all reports were she
was! Thank goodness.
The rest of the run was pretty uneventful, just fun. We stopped
lots and visited, let the dogs roll in the snow a number of
times and I smiled for all 11 miles. We never saw another team,
as we caught no one and no one caught us.
There was one moment early in the day that brought tears to my
eyes. As we were still on 4th Avenue I went to offer my leaders
a word of encouragement as we approached one of the road
crossings. But what slipped out of my mouth was 'On By Snicks'.
I don't think I've made that slip once since I lost her. Seems
very appropriate that today was the day.
Too soon the run was over. The dogs were loaded into the truck
and now it is time to get ready for the real deal. Tomorrow the
real fun begins!
Karen's Diary - Iditarod 2008 Edition
Click on the paws above to follow the team back to our main page...