Posts by Terrie Hanke

Jr. Iditarod – One Champion, All Winners

  The 40th Jr. Iditarod Champion was crowned three minutes past noon on Sunday of the two-day event. Andrew Nolan came onto Willow Lake with a spirited dog team. Nolan and Colby Spears had exchanged leads throughout the trip from Yentna. As he polled with the beat of the dogs, Nolan knew Colby was close …


Jr. Iditarod mushers depart Yentna Station

The Jr. Iditarod start couldn’t have been more beautiful. The clouds were low on Knik Lake as the dog trucks came in to park. The temperatures were mild with no wind. The clouds lifted, Mother Nature’s artistic beauty was revealed in the hoar frost that covered the trees all the way around the lake. Incredible …


Stage is Set for 40th Jr. Iditarod

The stage is set for the 40th Jr. Iditarod. Earlier today mushers brought their dogs in for vet check. This evening they gathered for the bib draw, pizza, cake and race rule information. It will be a baker’s dozen, thirteen mushers will take to the trail on Saturday morning. In an earlier post, six of the …


Jr. Mushers have Vet Check

Jr. Iditarod vet check was the happening at Iditarod Headquarters on Friday morning. The Veterinary team headed by Dr. Phil Meyers was on hand to screen the canine athletes and Race Marshal; Meredith Mapes assisted the vets and mushers with the necessary paperwork. Mushers will gather again later this evening at Iditarod Headquarters for the …


Stan & Sally Smith Honored by Jr. Iditarod

The Jr. Iditarod salutes Stan as Sally Smith as the honorary mushers for the 2017 race. The Smiths will be wearing bib #1 for the start of the 40th Jr. Iditarod. The race will begin on Saturday Feb 25th at 10:00 am within shouting distance of Joe and Vi Redington’s former home place on Knik Lake. …


40th Jr. Iditarod has Three Early Entries

The 40th Jr. Iditarod has its first entrants. The Jr. event began accepting registrations on the same day registration opened for Iditarod. At the end of the day, three junior mushers had indicated their intention to compete in the 150-mile race that begins on February 25, 2017. The first Jr. Musher to turn her registration …


Eye on the Trail: Jr. Iditarod Celebrates

A wise but unknown person once said, “The thrill is not in winning but in the courage to join the race.”  The Jr. Iditarod is the embodiment of that statement.  The banquet is a celebration of success for these young mushers and it gives the community, race advocates, friends, fans and family an opportunity to …


Eye on the Trail: Reflecting on the Jr. Iditarod from Yentna

As of 1:30 this afternoon (Sunday), all Jr. Iditarod teams have crossed the Willow finish line.  In earlier stories, I referred to the mushers in this 39th Jr Iditarod race as the Ten Top Notch Teens.  Having seen them perform over the past two days, I’m going to change that to TEN TOP NOTCH TEENS.  …


Eye on the Trail: Juniors Into Yentna

There was less than two hours separating the first musher and the final musher coming into the half-way checkpoint at Yentna Station Roadhouse.  Defending champion, Kevin Harper led the charge to Yentna arriving at 1641, five minutes ahead of Andrew Nolan.  Rounding out the first trio of incoming mushers was Bailey Schaeffer.  She arrived at …


Eye on the Trail:  Jr. Iditarod Starts from Willow

Clear and cool, no wind, twenty-three degrees – it was absolutely perfect for the start of the Jr. Iditarod.  The race start was moved from the traditional location on Knik Lake out to the Willow Community Center in search of snow.  While not an abundance, it was certainly adequate.  The ten top-notch teen mushers were …