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Baker and Smyth in Kaltag, Nelson in Anvik

audio by Laureli Kinneen; text by David Dodman

We’re back to Iditarod after lots of Nome-Golovin snowmachine action today!

Here’s our latest interviews. First, Robert Nelson, in the Anvik checkpoint, talks to KNOM trail reporter Laureli Kinneen about catching the “mushing bug,” a few problems with his dog team, and his experiences on the trail thus far (including its earlier stretches). Nelson also explained how he made the transformation from businessman to dog musher:

In Kaltag, Laureli talked with current race leader John Baker of Kotzebue, as well as one of Kaltag’s race veterinarians, and caught the sounds of Baker pulling into the Yukon River checkpoint. Baker talked about his race strategy going towards Unalakleet (referred to in this interview by its nickname, “Unk”), how he’s dealt with warm weather and winds on the trail, and his need for rest:

Second behind John Baker pulling into Kaltag was Willow’s Ramey Smyth. With KNOM’s Laureli Kinneen, Smyth talked about building “trust” with his dogs, the prospect of “making history” in Iditarod 2011, and his views on John Baker’s chances for this year’s race (hint: they’re good):

As of 8:30pm Saturday, Robert Nelson is in 23rd position at the Eagle Island checkpoint; he arrived at 1:35pm. At time of writing, Iditarod.com is not indicating how many dogs are in Nelson’s team.

John Baker is in first position; he’s currently the only musher out of Kaltag. With 11 dogs, Baker departed Kaltag at 5:18pm.

Ramey Smyth remains in second position; he’s resting in Kaltag with 14 dogs, having arrived at 3:02pm.

1 Comment

  1. Beverly Hoffman on March 12, 2011 at 9:43 pm

    LOve it all. You all are doing great in the coverage. Quyana from the Kuskokwim