Thursday, January 15, 2009

Gaining Weight in Bethel

Hey Y'all!
So far it's much like our visit to the Yukon Delta last year-wet, wet, wet. Been raining for 2 days now, temps. in the 30's. Hopefully the race will start on time. Planes have been delayed with a few remaining teams that are not here yet. Considering those teams are the 'prime time' mushers that are well known in the video world the folks in charge have to accomodate for them. We always try to come an extra few days early just in case a scenario like this arises. The way the weather has been this year I think next year we'll come at least a week early. Tamra and I flew in on the same plane as Aaron Burmeister and Dee Dee Jonrowe. It was rather startingly meeting her as I was just stepping out of the bathroom in the back of the plane. Dee was just featured on Alaska's newest postage stamp- a pic of her dogteam running thru Rainy Pass.

Unfortunately our trip from Whitehorse was a nightmare. The folks who 'fixed' our truck last week never really solved the problem. An hour out of town we were once again forced to find a tow truck and return back to town. Our friends John and Laura from Icy Waters were true Angels helping to haul the trailer full of pooches. We then had to rent another truck at an astronomical rental fee for a week. As Tamra says, "The real mushers figure out ways to solve problems that seem to always happen- whether it be on the trail or in everyday life." It's been refreshing here in southwestern Alaska to enjoy the warm air though hopefully the temps. drop a bit before race time. We'll know by tomorrow morning whether it's going to start according to scheduele or on saturday. In the meantime we've been enjoying our wonderful hostess's, Pat Barrett, fine southern cuisine. (she's a Carolina gal)

I took Tamra for a drive around the area yesterday. Showed her the road where Martin Buser and myself finished on last year. It wasn't the main trail but Bethel resembles the Minto flats outside of Fairbanks- it's tundra with a maze of trails that are easy to become confused within. While driving around I ran into my friend Mike Williams from Aniak, a local Eskimo village. Had a wonderful chat- Mike will be heading to Washington for the inaugural in a few days. He is one of the head 'chiefs' around these parts. Mike performs the Iditarod banquet's prayers each year. It's been an honor to share trail time with him these past few years- he truly represents the spirit of Alaska. Well, hopefully the Great Almighty will give us a chance to enjoy a brief run soon- I need to lose a few pounds. And the Dawgs? We think their starting to get a bit restless laying around on all of Pat's couches. The picture is priceless, however. You folks down in the Lower 48 stay warm now ya hear? Peace, HHN To follow the race go to:


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