|Race start, Pic by Jan Denapoli|
The race trail was gorgeous. It started at Chatanika Lodge, north of Two Rivers, on a wide, well groomed trail. I was on the brake pretty hard for the first twenty miles as it wound up (a lot) and down, over Domes and down river valleys between. The views were 360 for much of the route to Two Rivers, really spectacular and I was wishing I had a camera with me.
|Near Cleary Summit, Pic by Jan Denapoli|
The first two runs were nearly perfect. We traversed the hilly trail to Two Rivers in about 4 1/2 hours and then proceeded to the Pleasant Valley store checkpoint over drifted trail, driving solidly by the home trails. The third run was marked by sick dogs; about half the dogs had diarrhea or vomiting, really the first time I'd seen that during a race this year. Fortunately I had metronidazole with me and treated many on the trail but I did drop Bolt and Apollo at Angel Creek due to the diarrea. Our last run seemed slow due to soft trail in many sections and I did worry Heidi might catch us but they must have motored along reasonably at the Weasley Wobble pace, passing by the house for the third time and proceeding nicely to the finish line at the store. I was very happy with all the dogs especially Dusty who finished her first 200 mile race and Wilma who proved to me she's probably not ready for retirement!
My thanks to all the volunteers of Two Rivers who put on a great race and congratulations to all the mushers who participated!