SP Kennel is a premier sled dog racing kennel in Two Rivers, Alaska, dedicated to the individual dog through excellent health, nutrition, training and specialized care.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

YQ: Carmacks Update


It’s always thrilling to see two dog teams come into a checkpoint at the same time. This afternoon we saw Allen and our athletes appear loping along the in-trail followed hot on his heels by Ed Hopkins and his team. Both dog teams looked great and had been leapfrogging each other on the tracker all morning.

You could tell it was cold on the river as all the dogs had frosty beards and steam rising when they stopped. Izzy looked particularly fetching with a white ice-beard.

We employed a great team effort to get the team parked in Carmacks: they need to do a hard 90 degree HAW to get in beside the gymnasium then a U-turn to be facing the correct direction to exit. Thanks to the volunteers who helped our team manoeuvre into place, it looked so effortless.

Allen set to his checkpoint routine, snacking to dogs on their frozen salmon, beef and turkey skins, removing booties and bedding them down in fresh straw. The vet team moved in right away to give
everyone a thorough inspection and speak with Allen about any issues he might be having and to give advice.

The team looked quite content after their snack and straw, with some settling quickly. A few others (I’m looking at you Champ and Rodney) took only just a little bit longer as they had to look around for a while and figure out what was going on. They are all sleeping now dreaming of the trail to come.

Allen is also sleeping, he has had very little rest since Friday night! He’s upstairs in a quiet “musher only” area and will get a wake-up call from the volunteers in enough time to gather his outer layers that are hanging to dry, get outside and give the dog their meal and pack his sled.

We asked him a little about the trail as he ate his chilli (there was a vegetarian option and a meat option, when asked he replied with a rather emphatic “Meat!”). He said the trail was great, they’d been told it was the best ever so it was living up to that. There was a little jumble ice on the river making it a bit bumpy in the last section but it was a fast, good trail. The dogs were doing a great job, especially the youngsters and he is trying to keep them a little slower to ensure they don’t jar or strain anything on the fast trail.

Once the team leaves at 6.27pm (at the earliest) Mark and I will clean up the straw and his campspot then get on the road up to McCabe Creek dog drop. This is the only ‘remote’ dog drop/ hospitality that handlers can go into so we’ll go in and take a look.


Aliy and the Red Team are in Carmacks, as I write this they have just arrived and are having a small meal. They will have a sleep and get another just before they leave. Aliy must do six hours here plus her time differential so she will get a chance to sleep, something that has been scarce since Friday.

She is really pleased with the team and they bounced in looking happy. She has Woody and Chena in lead and said she is moving leaders around to give everyone an opportunity.

Thanks to Carmen, Emily and their volunteer team for the organization and help in Carmacks.


Sorry, can't upload pics right now as the internet is under huge load. Next internet is at Pelly Crossing so I may get a chance to share them with you then.


Charlene&Lisa said...

Thanks for the update! Rest well teams then GO GO GO!!

Heidi Phillips said...

Great update Moira, thank you. Good to know the humans are getting a bit of rest as well as the pups. Two strong teams on the trail, proud of everyone, especially Woody!!! Go get 'me big guy!! Go SPK!!!


Toni Tadolini said...

Thanks for the update!Go SPK!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the update. My refresh gets a break while Allen and Aliy are resting. Go SPK!!!!

Margaret said...


Go Black Team!!!

Go Red Team!!!

Pleasant dreams and a great rest and then back to the trail!!!


Thanks ever so much for this new!!!

Steve Parker said...

Great update, thanks. Great mushing to Allen, Aliy and teams. Good luck and safe trails on the next legs of the journey. Cheering for SPK here from Montana!!

Dawn Engler said...

Wow was I off on my timing! Where's Magellan when we need him? Haha. Well, the teams are doing great no matter how screwed up I am. Rest up!

Nessmuk said...

Nice both Teams are in Carmacks.....wow...hardly any sleep since Friday....that always amazes me! Glad to hear both Teams are looking good and eating well! Champ and Rodney are learning a lot on this trek! Hope everyone enjoys some shut eye....lots of miles yet to go! Go SPK!!

Linda Toth said...

Great update. THANKS

They appear to be going slower out of Carmacks, so more jumble ice, maybe? I know there were some rough spots for the original gold rush rafters from Carmacks on. I am thinking about images of the Yukon from high above where the mushers are at times.

Kathy said...

Great News on everyone! Thanks for the update Moira.
Go Allen & Aliy!!!!

babs said...

thanks for the great update, Moira. I look at it this way: update when you can; pictures when you can. it's all good!

Margaret said...

Red Team dropped a dog out of Carmacks?

Margaret said...

I forgot to mention that SP Kennel is the best in EVERYTHING.

Wishing all 2 and 4 legged team members including handlers every warm thought I can express!!!

Summed up in a big W O O F ! ! ! Woof, woof, woof!!!

Marilyn cozzens said...

Moira, thanks so much for all the updates. Keep mushing along Allen & Aliy.