Gealach Mor Siberians
Working sleddogs - just for the love of it..............
My American trip was cut short, and I do regret having missed the opportunity to have gone to the Beargrease. However, the time spent with Mike and Sue was great and I feel I still managed to pick up some ideas and add to my skills.
Returning early also means I may just manage to get my guys back on the trail for some runs this year and possibly be able to enter a couple of events. High on my agenda is the NSDSC run at Balloch, a fledging organisation trying to put on "distance" races here in the UK. There's a small group of us involved in this but it makes for a good atmosphere and is very relaxed. The desire to run your dogs over distances greater that the usual 4 miles is slowly gaining some momentum.
Making use of our new training camp up in the Highlands, I finally spent some time up there this month. It was obviously meant to be - it snowed !!!!
The race dogs working hard in training, Takeo and Inka are at wheel.
With the weather co-operating, and the dogs running well, amazingly well considering they have not been in harness since the 2nd of December, I'm wishing the NSDSC run was another couple of weeks away - but it's not, it's 17 - 18th of Feb and there's just no way I can get these guys ready in time. Fortunately, being a pretty laid back group, by "volunteering" to man one of the marshal points on the Saturday , I can run a 10 dog team on the 7 mile trail on the Sunday.
Not content with just racing - we decided to make it more of a test for the dogs - and as well as using a 200lb cart instead of the usual 25lb race rigs, I also carried a passenger.
Our race team
Harry and Teague, Nadia and Wink, Milloy and Fina, Trey and Seven, Inka and Takeo
The following weekend was the SHCGB race at Blackcraigs - another race offering slightly further distance than normally available - approx 6 miles for some of the classes. We entered a 6 dog team and were 3rd after the first day, finishing 4th overall in a reasonable combined time of 52 minutes 11 seconds.