Brent's Blog

Sunday, November 30, 2008


Quick Update

Hello from Eureka. I have to get going it is hard to stop for too long at the beginning of the run. But I wanted to let everybody know I made it back out to Eureka with all my supplies safely. I first want to say thanks to everyone that responded. It always amazes me to see how msny people are checking in, I am sorry it will take me a bite to get back to you individually but Thank You. We have a long way to go but with your support I am sure we will get there. Kyla and I have been going none stop running the dogs and they are doing great!!! I have been able to make my first round of cuts. It has not been easy but I have to start focusing on the strongest dogs that have the best potential of making my quest team. More on that later. I have been pretty sick but have been pushing through and an finally starting to feel better. Thanks in large part to Kyla, she has really stepped up this year and has proven she has what it takes to be a great musher. She went from training pups and learning how to drive a sled last year to going on back to back 40 mile runs through the night (12 hours total) It really helps our training schedule when we can run 22 race dogs at one time. Ok so much for quick!! There's just to much to tell you all about. I'll be back with more soon. Thanks again and keep those, emails, calls and comments coming.

Brent and the Wild and Free Gang

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Reality Check

Hello, Well I made it back to town. I had a great drive back this morning; I left Eureka really early so I didn’t run into anyone on the road for the first 80 miles, which makes for a great trip. Being back in town and back in the rat race really makes me appreciate Eureka even more. I am extremely fortunate to have such a great place to live and train the dogs. I am really excited about my team this year and feel I will be bringing the best 14 dogs anyone has seen from Wild and Free. This years Quest is a big one, with the field growing more and more competitive; it is going to be a great year for the dogs and I to really prove that we can compete with the best mushers in the field. Training is going well and the dogs look stronger then ever, however my optimistic ways have put me in a tight spot. Being back in town brings me back to the realities and the challenges of running a competitive racing kennel. I am an extremely optimistic person, always have been, and always will be, but sometimes this is a fault. I am facing some real challenges putting together enough funds to pull off the season and accomplish everything I want to. I am a vey proud person, and have a really hard time asking for support but times are tight. I worked very hard all year to get myself prepared physically, mentally, and financially for the season, but because of where the economy is many of my sponsors have not been able to contribute as much as planned. On top of that, a few costly equipment repairs to my dog truck, fourwheelers, and other equipment vital to our success has really put me in a challenging situation. Owning and operating this kennel is my life, there is not a day I get out of bed that I am not working towards being the best musher I can be. I cant thank all of you enough for following me along this path that has proven to be very exciting but challenging at the same time. The bottom line is that I need some help to put this all together and bring the strongest dog team I can to the 2009 Quest. Some specific areas I need help in are: Quest food drop costs, gas, travel expenses and getting the team and I to a couple races before the Quest. These races, the Gin Gin 200 and the Copper Basin 300 are very important to help me test dogs and decided which 14 are the best dogs, not only on the training trail but also in race competitions. I truly appreciate all of you for following me along on this journey, whether you have joined in for this season, or have been there since my first race in 2006, I hope the ride has been as exciting for you as it has been for me. Please spread the word about Wild and Free and lets see if we can help send this very determined team on a path of success. Every little bit helps! The more people that get involved the greater the reward. I am already extremely fortunate to have the most supportive sponsors, family and friends in the world, without them none of this would be possible. Thanks so much for taking time out of your busy day to check in. If you have any questions about how you can help please feel free to email me at Or, if you like, donations can be made through my site at: One thing is for sure I will be on the top of Eureka Pass with the temperature at -20, the wind blowing 30 mph, and an eager dog team ahead of me updating you with my iPhone every step of the way!!

Staying Wild and Free


Sunday, November 23, 2008


60 miler

Had an amazing day today went to the village of Rampart on the Mighty Yukon River. Took a break and ate lunch with a local (one of eight) and mushed back. Incredible!!! Same for tomorrow and then it's back to reality for a day. Have to resupply. Update ya then



60 miler

Had an amazing day today went to the village of Rampart on the Mighty Yukon River. Took a break and ate lunch with a local (one of eight) and mushed back. Incredible!!! Same for tomorrow and then it's back to reality for a day. Have to resupply. Update ya then


Saturday, November 22, 2008


wild and free

hello all

Thanks for all of your comments! It is alot of fun to see all of you following our progress. Sorry it's been so long but it has been crazy here the spot that I get reception at has been extremely windy and I have been freezing my fingers trying to do just the minimal amount of email. But today it is nice about -15 and no wind. The training is going great the weather has been great for tough training and dogs are really excelling. I have to give a big thanks to by buddies josh and thom. They came out and helped run dogs and basically been slaving away at the many projects kyla and I have not gotten too. We collected hauled cut and split a cord of wood, which was key since everything from keeping us warm to feeding the dogs a hot meal depends on. Thom totally orginized the kitchen, Kyla and I are still trying to figure out where everything is but it is very orginized. But best of all they ran dogs and cut my training time in half running all 33 race dogs at one time is awesome. We had a great trip out to hutlinana hot springs with four teams, which is one wild ride. The trail us full of steep down hills and switchbacks, a real challenge for an experienced sled driver. Kyla thom and josh proved they had what it took and had perfect runs. A day later we went and visited the only full time residence of Eureka, Ed and Willow and told them we had went out to the hoot and they were very impressed, it was great to gain some respect from some true Alaskan dog mushers. Ed and Willow homesteaded in eureka 30 years ago and trained dogs with susan butcher rich swenson and other legends of the sport. So getting props from them was pretty cool. The dogs are looking really good we are doing double 30's and 40 mile runs now and the first wave of cuts is this weekend. It will be sad to drop some of them out of the training but it is time to focus on the strongest dogs. There are lots of stand outs this year but at this point The Dude is the man. It is awesome to see this 3 year old excel he was part of my first litter and I have put alot of time and effort into him and it is really paid off. Be is a driving force. Once I make the cuts this week I'll give you the line up of dogs still in training. Thanks again for all your comments and keep them coming. Signing off from the top of eureka dome in Eureka Alaska, staying wild and free!!


Thursday, November 13, 2008


Mountain Top Update

Hello all I am writing this with 12 crazy dogs eager to go, on the top of a mountain outside of Eureka. I get reception with my Iphone in this one spot but the wind is blowing 30 MPH and my fingers are going to freeze soon so I'll be brief. Training is going great we are running 30 mile runs on trails full of snow . There are a few areas where the wind has blowen the trail a little thin but nothing serious. The dogs and I are enjoying the nice smooth trail. Life in the bush is paradise for me and the dogs. All I have to think about is running dogs, collecting firewood and hauling water!!! Survival in other words!!! No stresses of town life. I gotta go the dogs just pulled the hook. I'll update more on the 16 when I have to make a town run.


Friday, November 7, 2008




 Thanks for checking in.   Things have been really busy around here trying to get everything packed up to head to Eureka on Sunday.  The trails here in fairbanks have not improved much, we did get a little snow a few days ago but it was not enough to cover up all the hazards.  It will be so nice to get out to Eureka and really let the dogs run.  The rough trails make it really hard for the dogs to get into a rhythm, I constantly have to be on and off the break to make sure we don't get going to fast, and this is getting harder and harder to do everyday.  The dogs are looking strong and need to start going faster and farther and with over 2 feet of snow on the trial out in Eureka we will be able to do that soon.   This fall has been pretty crazy from withdrawing from the Iditarod to the extremely rough trials , it has not been easy,  but through it all the dogs have really shined.  The rough trails have been a good lesson for them and I have been able to really work on commands like easy, relax and whoa.  Because of the rough trail they almost had to listen to these commands, which a usually extremely tough to teach to a dog who's main purpose is to go forward as fast as possible.  I need to keep using these commands so that they will be useful to me throughout the season.  I have also been able to work with allot of new leaders.  With great leaders like Silver, Ling Ling and Madonna, I have been able to train allot of young dogs.  I worked with dogs like The Dude, Walter, Maude who were part of my quest team last year and have proven they have what it takes to be a great leader, and just need some work with commands.   To dogs dogs like Muskrat, Skunk and Ben who are fresh on the scene and showing great potential as future leaders.  So even though it has been a crazy start to the season I am looking forward to continuing my training and very excited about the team of dogs I am going to bring to the start of the Quest this year.  I am still working with the webmaster on getting dogs pics and Bios up, so stay tuned for that so you can put a face to all of these crazy dogs.  Thanks again for checking in and keep those comments coming it motivates me to keep the blog updated!!

Brent and the Wild and Free Hounds

Monday, November 3, 2008


Tough Decisions

Well the last week has been extremely busy and full of big decisions.  Starting with the Iditarod.  I am not very excited to inform all of you, but after taking a good look at the season ahead and what I was going to be capable of affording, the Iditarod was going to be a stretch.  After many sleepless nights I had to make the decision to withdrawal from the 2009 Iditatrod.  Times are tight and I was not able to make/raise enough money to be able to do both the Quest and the Iditarod.  The last day to withdrawal and get some of my entry fee back was the first of Nov.  So I had to make the decision before then.  I am still trying to get over the decision to withdrawal, but I am confident that I have made the right decision.  My main focus in my career at this point is the Yukon Quest and I need to make sure that I can put 100 percent into the preparation and running of that race, and this decision is the only way that is possible.  So there ya have it, times are a changing here at Wild and Free.  On top of that we have not gotten any new snow here in Fairbanks and it is becoming a problem.  I am running 3 teams 20 miles a day right now on a trail that is totally out of control.  The lack of snow is really making for a very unsafe trail for the dogs, myself and the equipment.  Holloween night I went out and ended up breaking both runners on my sled, 10 miles from home.  This made for a pretty crazy trip home with ten powerful dogs.  So because of this I am in the process of making the move back to Eureka.  I was out there yesterday to pick up a snowmachine and there is over 2 feet of snow, and the trails are perfect.  For those of you who don't know.  Eureka is the homestead of legendary musher Susan Butcher and her husband Dave Monson (who I work for in the summer).  Last season we were out there all season training dogs and had an amazing time.  I was planning on staying in town this season to  make the logistics easier, but with this snow issue there is only one place to be.  On a good note Kyla came last night so things are about to start running allot smoother and more efficient.  So the plan is to spend the next week here in town preparing to head out to Eureka. Ill keep ya posted as plans develop.  Thanks for checking in.



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