News from Nikolai
I just got off the phone with Karen. She was in Nikolai and in a very good mood, she says that she's having a blast. The trail has been great, the Steps and the Gorge were the best that Karen has ever seen. Snickers and Dasher led to Finger Lake then Karen switched over to JR and Dasher. It appears that Snickers has developed a dislike for Vets. Every time someone other than Karen touches Snickers feet she snaps at them, so Karen put a fluorescent collar on her so she could warn the Vets about the little shark.
Draco will be dropped in Nikolia, he's just not pulling. The Vets can't find anything wrong with him, he's the biggest dog on the team and Karen doesn't want to take the risk of having to bag him. The good news is that everyone else is working so hard that Karen say's that he isn't needed.
Karen will blow through McGrath and take her 24 hour break in Takotna. Her run times between checkpoints have been faster than 2004, she's been taking longer rests at checkpoints and is still pretty much on schedule. We discussed some of the times that were posted on the Iditarod website and it sounds like some of the information has been wrong.
Karen's average speed
through the early checkpoints during the 2004 Iditarod:
Karen said that Jeff Schultz was in Nikolai taking pictures of Dasher and of Karen's new souvenir. After successfully negotiating the Steps and the Gorge, Karen was crossing a frozen swamp when one of her sled runners caught a rut and she flipped her sled. While on her side she managed to slam her face into a tree. The picture of Karen's black-eye should be in tomorrows newspaper.
Shortly after this posting, questions regarding identity of a second dropped dog
were quickly bandied about when the current race update was posted showing Karen
leaving Nikolai with 14 dogs.
|| 24 8
Karen's brother Jim shared with the NorthWapiti Yahoo NewsGroup the identity of
a second dog that was dropped - Surge.
Draco is cared for by a volunteer at the dropped dog lot
Draco rests after being dropped
Draco & Surge
Sunset at the dropped dog lot