It’s 6.15pm AK time.
RED TEAM UPDATE
Aliy and the Red Team are running towards Ruby right now having ‘blown through’ Cripple at 3.45pm this afternoon. The Insider posted a video of the team as they went through and she is currently running with Mismo and Dutch in lead, Scout and Izzy in swing, Willie and Scruggs, Waylon and Chipper, Kodiak and Chemo, Schmoe on his own, Sandy and Commando then Clyde and Felix in wheel.
The video showed the vets taking a look a the team and Aliy signing off the vet book (part of the mandatory gear mushers must have on them at all times), and showed some nice close-ups of Kodiak, Sandy and Commando. The dogs look really good and seemed more than happy to continue on to their next stop.
Aliy herself also looks great! Well rested, fit and healthy!
As they leave you can see that Aliy has half a bale of straw strapped to the sled. That indicates strongly that they will camp out on the way to Ruby.
Aliy and Allen both set a ‘plan A’ (and B and C…) for their race and at this point it seems they are both keeping to schedule. They like to keep a regular run/rest rhythm for their dogs and because they both enjoy camping, and are extremely capable and experienced, they are able to break their runs up to suit the dogs rather than to stop in checkpoints for the mushers’ comfort. They are well prepared to take what they need to stop on the trail, and as I have mentioned before, often times the dogs get a better rest when they are away from other dog teams and people.
They are currently sitting second according to the GPS tracker but there are a bunch of mushers still seeing out their mandatory 24 hour layover so it is too soon to arrive at any conclusions about that yet. Once everyone is off their 24 hour break we will get a better idea of where they all sit.
BLACK TEAM UPDATE
Allen and the Black Team have stopped to camp at mile 400 – exactly the same spot as the Red Team did earlier in the day. At the moment they are using the same run schedule as the Red Team (but their rest break may be a little longer) so expect them to go through Cripple during the night.
The Trail Notes say of this section: It’s a safe bet you won’t have the faintest idea where you are for much this leg. Even if you sneak a GPS along with you it won’t help much because every hill and creek seems the same as the one before and the one ahead. There are a few recognizable river and creek crossings, but precious few hills and prominent landmarks. At night you will be collapsed into your own little world and the trail will seem to go forever. At least much of it is along an old cart trail, so there’s not much chance to get lost.
Chica is staying the night Linda’s before heading out to Margie’s kennel in Knik. Having had a couple of days rest out on the trail she is in good shape but just seems a little bummed about not being in the race anymore. Linda brought her inside while she had some work to do and she seemed very happy with that situation!