Sunday, February 17, 2008

Three Links and One Quick Book Review

arctic MOUNTAINBIKING goddess You must see it to believe it...I know, not dog powered, but pretty damn thrilling none the less. This girl and her pimped out ride are tough!YukonQuest which is considered the 1000 mile warm-up to the Iditerod, is underway now (started Feb 9) and is proving to be a fascinating race. Lance Mackey who won both the Yukon Quest AND the Iditarod last year, is currently in the lead. His story is very inspiring. Both his brothers have raced and won the Iditerod (victory for both on their 6th race). Last year Lance, after surviving cancer, won the Yukon Quest and with just a one week rest, took virtually the same team out, and ran and won the Iditarod. (his 6th run...cosmic)

The Iditarod starts March 1st. Be sure and browse their site. It features inspiring video clips, great educator links, and of course, amazing Alaska scenery. Photos above are from (deleted - to view visit:) the websites featured.

And now,
a Quick BOOK Review:
Ski Spot Run: This is an well put together book on skijoring specifically and other dog powered sports generally.

For those of you who have never heard of skijoring, take note:
(ski·jor·ing n. [modif. of Norw skikjøring, fr. ski + kjøring driving]: a winter sport in which a person wearing skis is drawn over snow by one or more dogs)

This book was written by Matt Haakenstad and John Thompson w/illustrations by Jack Lunde. It is an entertaining book with comical sections describing certain events on the trail, written from the point of view of the humans, and then the pups! Very insightful, and
humorous! Here is a link to an essay by a young lad that also appears in the book, it is titled My First Skijoring Experience. In it, he captures the passion that rises in one that feels the call of nature, and the pull of canine power. One amusing question the authors pose to the reader early on, is "Was Murphy's law originally written with skijoring in mind?" They then illustrate their conviction that indeed it was, by coining various new Murphy's Laws, such as " The probability of falling or crashing, as well as the apparent severity (e.g.,spectator WOW factor) of stated fall or crash, is a function of the number of persons in the immediate vicinity. " The same zany logic is applied to many other areas of skijoring, and aspects of it, like improperly positioned harnesses for instance. The degree of screw-up, is of course, directly related to the dogs wriggling and fussing while you try to remedy it! This book is full of good information, plenty of great pictures and skillful illustrations, with clear descriptions of all the basic gear, commands and important safety tips. There is a thorough description of bikjoring with tips and photos as well. They cover scootering and skating behind your pooch too. I highly recommend this book to those interested in learning more about this fascinating world of dog powered sports. SkiSpotRun is available here ..Of course now I want my own skijor belt and a pair of x-country skis... for the 3 times a year it snows at my place...
Beautiful pups...i love the two shots below they look like my doggies! All pictures are from SKIJORNOW!
From world Championships
Birgitte Naess, Norway

Photo by Jack Kuntz

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