From Gerry and the team along the trail:
Today was a day off from racing — kind of. While the teams were not on the trails, we were still busy with the dogs. It’s great to have an entire day to thoroughly inspect each dog and work on every little issue there may be, like stiff muscles, foot problems, etc. In continuous races like the Quest or Iditarod, the mushers handle all these chores while resting in the checkpoints or camped out along the trail, but in stage racing these chores are done by musher and handler with the convenience of truck and trailer loaded with supplies. So the race also happens away from the actual trail, almost around the clock (mushers can get eight hours of sleep here if desired, unlike at Quest or Iditarod).
The “day off” also gave us opportunity to go swimming in the hotel pool, eat Thai food and mingle with the local folks in Lander for a meet & greet, for which Main Street was shut down so that the public could visit with the teams.
We had a fine time at the public event in Lander — thanks to those who came out to say hello to the team.
Some scenes from on the trail and off — folks in Wyoming really know how to build ranch gates!
Wet roads make for interesting hubcap designs on our truck:
On the way to Lander, we dropped some dogs against a backdrop provided by Grand Teton:
It is snowing heavily, and while we are ready to travel to South Pass for the next stage at 6 a.m., we are also ready for a change of plan in case the road up the pass gets shut down.
You never know what tomorrow will bring, especially not in a dog race.