Expeditions

 

Annual Arctic Expedition

Expeditions are a large part of my training as the more time I spend with the dogs out in the elements and remote locations, the better we are as a team on the race trail. In the beginning, I spent every April living and mushing out of a camp in the Arctic of Alaska, at the base of the Brooks Range. It was the most amazing thing I had ever done. Spending every day and every minute with the dogs for weeks on end, was the best training for both the dogs and myself. Many days were spent just cruising the treeless landscape that rolls on for miles and miles. Breaking trail is something that my dogs just do, always have, always will and the Arctic is a great training ground for this. The accommodations were pretty amazing, considering we were 350 miles north of Fairbanks by road and 13 miles off the road by trail. In 2006 we had three tents with wood stoves, two large Solariums (three sided snow structures that capture the sun and its warmth), thirty-four sled dogs, one pet dog, four loose pups, three permanent camp residents, over twenty visiting guests and our token Cat, Kenevel. In 2007, we added to the comfort with a new 12x20 living tent, two more sleeping tents, and twenty more dogs. Our camp is on a low ridge above a lake which we drilled a hole in for water (the most pure water a person can ask for). We ate like kings and queens. My camp manager and great friend Thom Walker prepared meals to die for and we snacked on his baked goods all month long. Throughout the month the dogs and I did many runs to the road picking up visiting friends and carrying heavy loads of supplies, we also did long fast runs chasing caribou across the frozen tundra. It is the best of both worlds for a dog musher and his dogs.

Spending this kind of time with the dogs is something that cannot be done in town. For this reason, I have spent every spring exploring the Arctic and other areas of the north with my dogs. With the experience that we gained in the early years, we are now guiding dog mushing expeditions in March and April every year. With help from my good buddies and guides Josh Horst and Thom Walker, we have turned what we love to do into a job that we love. Our biggest client is a Norwegian dog mushing school who brings 15-18 students every March for a 10-day, 200-mile, expedition to Iniakuk WIlderness lodge in the heart of the Brooks Range!! This trip involves over eighty dogs, fourteen sleds and some of the most amazing country Alaska has to offer. The first trip was successful even though we encountered lots of obstacles, but we proved we had what it took to pull off an expedition of this kind. The second year we refined our systems, simplified things and worked together with the school to make the perfect trip! Bottom line, we have fun guiding these trips and hope to continue working with the the Norwegians and add a few more trips a year with other schools or guests. All of our trips are custom, so tell us what you want to do and we will design a trip of a lifetime!

For more information, please contact me directly and I look forward to hearing from you!

 

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Wild and Free Mushing | Box 62 | Manley Hot Springs, AK 99756

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