Welcome to the blog of a teen and her life with 9 dogs!
These ramblings are best read with a hot cuppa' coffee in your hand and warm slippers on your feet.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Clear Lake Race Video

Here is a video that a spectator took of the 5-dog class at the race last weekend! You'll find us at 14 minutes and 46 seconds and I had bib numbers 5 and 22. Enjoy!

This video was made by GonetotheSnowDogs. Click here to find out more about them.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Clear Lake Sled Dog Race

The results are in!

The Small 'N' Mighty Racing Team placed 4th in the Clear Lake Sled Dog Race!

The dogs after we got off the trail on Saturday.

I ran 4 dogs in the 5-dog class and we were the 22nd team to go out in a class of 26.

To put it plainly, the scenery was gorgeous! The trail was softer than I like it but considering the winter we've been having so far it was in good shape. The trail groomers did a great job!

We got to pass a few teams which my dogs did excellent with! I'm always a little nervous about passing in the first race of the season as we don't get the chance to practice passing very often during training. I'm always unsure of how my dogs will react but they did a superb job!

We finished the 5 mile trail on Saturday in 5th place with a time of 26 minutes (can't remember how many seconds).

On Sunday we were the 5th team to hit the trail and and we finished in 4th place with a time of 24 minutes.

I'm extremely proud of my dogs and how well they did! They never cease to amaze me.
Jacob, my 10 year old leader, seems to sense that this is his last year racing so he is giving it all he's got!

Over all we had a great time this weekend. It was our first M.U.S.H. (Mid Union Sled Haulers) race so there were lots of new people to meet. We usually run with GLSDA (Great Lakes Sled Dog Association) but since the first 2 GLSDA races were cancelled, we decided to try a M.U.S.H. race. We're glad we did! All of the people were so friendly and relaxed--you could tell that fun was the priority for the weekend...not winning, which made for a friendly and fun filled atmosphere.

Well, after a few days rest and a run or two this week, we'll be ready for next weekend! Look out Indian River, here we come!

Side note...
As a part of Rory, the new dogs', training I brought her along with us for the weekend so she could witness all of the action. That way when she is ready to race next year, she will know what a race site looks and sounds like.
After I got done racing today I put a harness on Rory and clipped a leash to the end of it and walked her down a small trail leading away from the race site. She listened to my 'Hike!' command and lead me down the trail. I'm pretty confident that she is going to make a good leader!

A reporter for 9&10 News came out to the race site and shot some video of the races. Click here to watch...

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Welcome Rory!

Today marks the arrival of a new addition to the kennel.

Rory is a 1 1/2 year old female Alaskan husky from excellent bloodlines (Butcher, Gilbertson, Ellis, Streeper).

Jacob, one of my main leaders is 10 years old which makes this racing season his last. So, Rory is his replacement; she has quite the harness to fill.

I think she can do it though. Rory is full of life and seems to be a very confident "go get 'em" type of dog--both desirable qualities in a leader.

Oh, and did I mention that she likes to jump?

Rory has already acquired the nickname of "Rory The Flying Dog"

Her young age means I've got my work cut out for me for the rest of the year. Although she may be an adult physically, she is just a puppy in the sled dog world. She does have some experience in harness but I am going to start from the ground up with her training to be sure I don't leave anything out.

Both the dogs and I are excited about Rory's arrival. We look forward to the coming days, weeks, months and hope that Rory can become a permanent addition to the Small 'N' Mighty Racing Team.

So without further ado, we say welcome, Rory. Welcome to our home.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Winter Has Arrived

On Thursday night, winter decided to make an appearance.

Six fluffy inches fell leaving the trails with enough snow to run a sled on.

So that's what we did.

Cougar, howling in anticipation.

My good friend and photographer, Dawn, came along to photograph the dogs for me since It's kind of hard for me to do it myself while I'm running the dogs. haha

She also got to take a team for a spin.

Hook up came with lots of excitement.

And lots of noise.

Jacob, lining out like the pro he is.

Char, doing her bunny hop. Salsa evidently smelled something in the snow that needed further investigation..

The dogs (and myself) were extremely excited to finally be running on snow.
After all, that's what they were born to do.

Heading out on a 5 mile training run.

As you can see, Jazz was quite surprised to find my friend on the trail.

When we got back it was time for a drink.

And apparently a look at ones reflection.
Jacob, admiring himself in the reflection of his water.

On Monday we'll be back out to do it again. Then we'll only run once or twice more next week as we have a race planned for this coming weekend.

Finally the snow has returned, hopefully to stay.
We readily welcome you, winter. Stay as long as you like.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Another one bites the dust...

Our racing schedule just keeps getting shorter and shorter. Another race has been cancelled today with no reschedule date.

Only 5 races are left and who knows what's in store. The clouds may let loose with everything they've been holding out on us or we may have no racing season at all.
Who knows.
In the meantime I have been taking advantage of the warm weather (45 degrees F in January?! Wait, is it April? I can't remember...) and getting a head start on spring cleaning the kennel. There's not much more to do for a musher when there is no snow in January (April?)!

On the sunny side of things, a surprise is brewing for the Small 'N' Mighty racing dogs.
Stay tuned to find out what it is!

Peace, Love, Sled Dogs

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

An Update of Sorts...

Today we went on our first sled run of the season!
There still isn't enough snow where we live to run, however, so we loaded up the dogs and traveled North to a friend's kennel to train. The run was flawless and really fast! The dogs are definitely ready for this racing season (provided we get some snow!).

Speaking of racing, the Lake Louise race in Boyne, the one we were supposed to run this coming weekend, has be cancelled until next year. :( There just isn't enough snow to get a good trail packed in and it hasn't been cold enough to freeze the lake which is part of the trail.

Along with that the Kalkaska Winterfest as been rescheduled to March 3rd and 4th (just the sled dog race, not the winterfest itself as far as I know).
It's not a great start to the racing season but hopefully the rest of the races will be run!

Now for some more enjoyable news...haha
We now have a new sled thanks to a couple of sponsors and some elbow grease over the summer. It's a Risdon Protracker, gently used and in great shape. We got to race with it last winter and I decided it needed to come home with us so I saved up for it over the summer and with a little help from a couple of sponsors, I bought it and brought it home yesterday.
Since this sled is more flexible and easier to steer than my old sled, I shouldn't have as many crashes. We'll see though... ;)

Well get out there and do your snow dance everyone! We sure do need the snow!

Peace, Love, Sled Dogs