Loaded and ready!
At Uncle Bob's in Chicago..
Hello all, from Two Rivers, Alaska. We finally pulled
in here Halloween afternoon after our 4689 mile journey
from home. October 14th, the day we left New Hampshire,
seems like a long time ago. The trip went pretty well
and it was a bit easier this time, as we’ve learned a
few things about how best to get across the continent
with a fully loaded dog truck. This was the third time
in a year and a half that I’ve driven from NH to the far
northwest of North America. Thanks to all the family and
friends that put us up along the way, we arrived here
having only spent three nights in motels over the course
of nearly three weeks of travel. We need to thank my
Mom, my Uncle Doug and his family, and Sue’s Uncle Bob
and his family for hospitality early in the trip.
Farther along in Alberta, Mark and Karen Ramstead put us
up for two nights and let us borrow an atv for some
training on their excellent trail system. When we got to
Moe’s house, where we spent last winter on Annie Lake
Road in the Yukon, we stayed a whole week and trained
every day. Thanks to that stint, we arrived here in AK
with a team in much better shape than we left NH with!
Now, with snow on the ground and temperatures cold
enough (-20 this morning), the team is so ready to go,
we’ll have to be careful to not go too wild here in the
next couple weeks…
Northern Rockies Lodge in B.C.
Crossing the Canadian Rockies.
Highlights of the trip definitely included the family
stops early in the trip. The Cabela’s store outside of
Minneapolis was a fun diversion from the Friday evening
traffic jam, although we didn’t spend a dime there. The
border crossing in to Canada was not so much fun as our
number was up and they spent two hours emptying our
truck and having their dog sniff through everything that
had been so carefully packed. Then I spent five minutes
cramming it all back in to the truck and we were on our
way again. The Ramstead’s home, an hour north of
Edmonton, was like an oasis for us with good food and
conversation and the ability to run the dogs. Up on the
Alaska Highway, we had another great stay at beautiful
Northern Rockies Lodge at Muncho Lake, BC. Thanks Uncle
Bob and Aunt Pam!! The next day we got to Annie Lake
Road (aka – mushers’ paradise) and spent 7 days running
the trails we spent all winter training on last year at
Moe’s, and the dogs knew exactly where they were. We
also found out why Moe couldn’t commit to handling with
Sue for the whole Quest, she is going to run the Quest
300 with her own team! You go girl! From there, we made
our way up the most remote sections of the Alaska
Highway to Tok, where we stayed a night, before
finishing the last 200 miles of the trip to Fairbanks
and out to Two Rivers and the home of Bill and Sandy
McKee, where we will spend the winter. They have a
separate cabin that has running water, electricity, and
a propane Monitor heater, not to mention internet
access. Our digs are quite different than last year.
It’s also quite a bit more social around here and in the
first few days we’ve been here, we’ve already had more
visitors than all of last winter. What we’ve given up in
solitude, we’ve gained in amenities. We look forward to
the variety and change.
In Alberta, Canada.
Although we’ve only been here three days, we’ve
already built new dog houses, repaired a few extras that
McKee’s had, moved in to our temporary “home”, and gone
for that first big grocery shop to fill the kitchen.
Today we’ll finally move the dogs out of the truck and
into their new home in a shared dog yard with Bill and
Sandy’s team. We’ll also go out for our first training
run here and start to learn a whole new trail system.
There is enough snow to slide a sled here right now and
we could control a small team most places, but we’ll use
an atv for now so we can run bigger teams with more
control. We can’t wait to get out and get some longer
runs on our very rowdy dogs. After spending nearly three
weeks in and out of the dogtruck, they are ready to
explode out on to the trails.
Sue training at Moe Better Kennels..
Under Needle Mtn in the Yukon.
So, we’ve got to get to it! Thanks so much to all of
you who have helped us get here with donations and/or
just good wishes. We really appreciate the help.
Thanks again and take care – Mike, Sue and TeamTsuga.