The Tourism season is coming to an end but it is going out with a bang. We are having full shows and lots of them. This week I did 7 dinner shows, 4 lunch shows and the river boat show twice a day. This makes for some really busy days, but I will say that I am still having fun at every show. Dog training is also going really well. I am still going 2.5 mils 5 days a week. The dogs are all doing really well and getting better as the temperatures are getting cooler and cooler. This morning it was 35 degrees a perfect temp for fall training. Made some huge progress in the dog yard. I had 7 loads of gravel delivered, rented a skid steer and totally overhaul the dog yard. It is amazing. We took out alot of stumps and filled all the holes the yard looking really good and makes feeding and shoveling and generally getting around alot smoother. We are all set for winter in the dog yard. Well not yet, in sept. I am going to have a dog house building party and build 40 new houses, that will be the completion of the dog yard. Until then I am a full time hole filler. I am hoping once the temps drop a little more and we start training farther the desire to dig holes will fade. It is really important to keep them filled until it freezes, so there are not a bunch of holes top fall in once it snows. ok enough about the dog holes. thanks for stopping by, the season is really ramping up to be an exciting one. Hope you'll check back to see how we prepare for both the Yukon Quest and Iditarod. Until next time
The fall training season is in full swing and things are really heating up. Along with running dogs and working at TBK
, all the projects that need to get done before the snow flies are going into action. The list begins with cleaning up the dog yard with new gravel, build 50 new houses, finish my half built wood shed and fill it with firewood, build a new shed, annual maintenance on the rental cabins and the list goes on. My marketing campaign is now underway as well, I am trying to spread the word about Wild and Free mushing, to get as many people interested in what I am trying to accomplish this season and get them fired up like I am. This campaign includes sending out postcards, writing sponsorship letters and thanking current sponsors. This is a huge job but very important to the success of The Wild and Free Team. Overall everything is going very well, I am happiest when I am busy and there is no shortage of projects to keep me busy. Sigrid is back from Norway and staying with me her in Fairbanks its been nice having her back and the help running dogs and doing chores has been great. Last Thursday and Friday Sigrid and I took a quick 1200 mile road trip to Whitehorse to pick up so dogs we bought. The trip went really well it was a great trip no problems and the dogs turned out to be great they have already been on 3 training runs and are adjusting to their new home very well. This weeks dog of the week is The Dude. The dude is a 3.5 year old that has been in both of my Quests and has become one of my main leaders. He was dropped 700 miles into my first Quest with Frostbitten
testicles but showed allot
of potential, last year in my fifth place finish he was a force and was one of the main reasons for our success. He has started this season with that same drive and has matured into a main leader. He is listening to commands holding out the line in lead and really pushing the pace. I can guarantee
he will play a large role in our success this season and a dog I see could go in both the Quest and the Iditarod
. I better get going hope all is well in your neck of the woods, thanks for checking in.
Staying Wild and Free
Well it wont be official for another 2.5 hours but I am the first and only person in line so far to sign up for the 2009 Yukon Quest. I arrived here at the log cabin visitors center in downtown Fairbanks at 5am this morning to make sure that I would be the first musher to sign up. This is the third straight year I have been first, and I plan on keeping this tradition going until I am first on both ends (to sign up and to cross the finish line first). This also makes me officially signed up for both the Quest and the Iditarod. I have one hell of a season ahead and this is just one of the first steps to making it the best season it can be. Better get back to finishing up my entry application. Signing off from downtown Fairbanks, AK
The first ever dog of the week goes to a year and half old dog named Jerry. Her enthusiasm tops all the dogs and her natural ability as a leader has set her apart in the first week of training. She is a black and brown 45 pound female with a very smooth stride and more energy then you could ever imagine. Last april in the arctic Jerry showed lots of potential, and quickly made her way to the leader position for many long runs. Jerry was also one of the dogs I worked with this summer with the mountain bike. On cool nights I would take two dogs out with the bike, one experienced leader and and one young dog, like Jerry. We go out on short two mile runs to get the young dogs familiar with being in lead and also teach them the commands. We use GEE for right and HAW for left. When the dogs are pulling me down the trail on my bike I give them a gee command the experienced leader takes the command and turns right, while the young dog follows and begins to learn the commands. It can take weeks, months or even years to train a good command leader, patience and a really good leader are the key to success. Luckily I have that in Silver, his great response to commands and strength really makes him an excellent leader trainer. Jerry is one of the easier ones to train, she has learned the commands very quickly and has the makings of a great leader. She will definitely be in the hunt for a spot on the Quest team this year. Her mother is Minook (Butcher Blood Lines) and her father is Ling Ling. Ling Ling is one of my original dogs and has been with me and finished both Quests. So with the combination of good blood lines and some solid training Jerry is defiantly a dog I see leading the Wild and Free team into the future. Hope you enjoyed learning more about Jerry, make sure to check back every friday for the Dog of the Week.
Fall training is going great!! The weather, although very wet and miserable for most people has been awesome for the dogs. The cool wet mornings are making it really nice to start training and the dogs are really showing their excitement. I have never scene the dogs as fired up as they have been this fall. I think they are sensing my excitement and really showing that they are ready to give it their all this season. To help all of you fans and supporters of Wild and Free get to know the team better I am going to start picking "A Dog of the Week". Every week I will pick a dog that has preformed exceptionally well and tell you about the dog, its role in the team and why it stood out that week. This will hopefully allow you to get a little more insight into the training and also get to know each dog individually. I am in the process of taking pics and writing a brief bio about each dog to be posted on the site, so stay tuned for that as well. The dog of week will be announced every Friday so check back tomorrow to see who stood out in the first week of training. If anyone has any other ideas on things I can do on the blog to better keep you informed please email me your suggestions
. I want to be able to help all of you, have as much fun following me as I do living the life!! Better get to bed. Thanks for checking in
Here we go!! Aug 1 marked the first day of official training for Wild and Free. I am running three teams of 12 dogs 2.5 miles. The weather has been great for running dogs, Cool and Wet, unfortunately because of the extremely wet season we are having major flood at TBK. The tents that I do my lunch and dinner shows in were 4 feet underwater, and stopped just shy of the Dog barn. Because of the flood we had to move the dogs to higher ground, move the tent shows to a different location and reroute the dog run for the riverboat. Half the driveway (trail) is underwater so instead of doing a circle around the lake with the dogs we run down the dry end of the driveway circle the dogs around and come back the same way. It is great training for the dogs and also gives the passengers of the boat a great view of dogs taking commands. It has been one hell of a week but I think the worst of it is over, the tents are still in about a foot of water but it is receding fast. But the water is very good for training and it has been great to get the dogs out in good cool temps. It is amazing how fired up they are to go, it is a real patience lesson for me because I have to make sure I don't get made at them for being excited. Soon they will realize that it is not the first or the last time they are going out and will calm down while hooking up, but it takes time. The three teams take me about 3 hours total to complete so not to bad, add in shoveling,watering and feeding and it totals about 4 hours of great fun. I am really excited to get started and cant wait to see the dogs preform this season there is a lot of potential out there its up too me to train them to their best ability. I also just signed up for the Equinox marathon which starts on Sept 20, so my training is going to start getting a lot more intense as well. Better run hope all is well in your neck of the woods. Thanks for stopping by, check back regularly I am going to start updating training news on a regular basis!!
Being Wild and Free