When I went to Michigan a few weeks ago, I met a young girl from central Wisconsin who was a member of the Wisconsin Trail Blazers – a sled dog club. Now I’m from Wisconsin, and I have been teaching about the Iditarod for 11 years, but I had no idea there was a club focused on the sport of dogsled racing about an hour away from where I live. Today they sponsored a race in Pearson, Wisconsin called the Dirty Dog Dryland Derby. I was able to go and talk to many athletes from the Midwest who train their dogs by racing them with modified bikes – crazy. Northern Wisconsin delivered a sunny, crisp day for this event. Perfect weather for the dogs in a beautiful setting. For those of you using the Iditarod as a teaching tool, check around for a local club. You never know what you’ll find in your own back yard!
Way north, in Alaska, my friend Angie Taggart continues to train her dogs while waiting for snow. She reports that, “We are working our way up to 20 miles runs. The ground is rough due to a lot of cold weather 4* to 34* so mush more mileage than 15 and my dogs will need to be booted. This coming week we should get some snow!!”
There is no doubt about it, whether on dry land or snow, the dogs love to run!