Having just received a press release, I thought I’d pass along this information about the upcoming Yukon Quest sled dog races that begin February 14th, 2009 in Whitehorse Yukon, finishing in Fairbanks, Alaska. Each year they alternate the start/finish between these two cities. This grueling race has been run every year since 1984 and follows a course along the Yukon River "the old highway of the north".  Mushers and their dog teams cover a thousand miles of remote backcountry at a time of the year when it’s both very dark and extremely cold. The race takes approximately two weeks to complete and with fewer than half the checkpoints of the Iditarod, mushers are certainly put to the test as not only do they need to be more independent, they also need to carry more weight.  If you’d like to read an article about the Yukon Quest (and the Iditarod), from a past issue of Modern Dog, click here.  If you’d like to visit the Yukon Quest’s website, click here.

(photographs by Ed Vos)