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Gatt, back in the Iditarod, surveys a “pretty strange race”

Hans Gatt with Laureli in Takotna

Hans Gatt, walking two of his sled dogs, chats with Laureli in Takotna.

If Hans Gatt had known how bad the early sections of this year’s Iditarod trail would be, he perhaps wouldn’t have returned to the race.

Being back on the sled for an Iditarod is a “dream” for him, but – as he told Laureli in Takotna on Wednesday – perhaps the more accurate word for the race, through the first few days of mushing, would be “nightmare.”

Gatt’s dogs, however, are doing well, and slight injuries to his face sustained earlier in the race have largely been healed, thanks to some time for rest and recuperation in Takotna.

The Iditarod is a “pretty strange race” in 2014, but at the Takotna checkpoint Wednesday afternoon, the musher was smiling brightly. Hear Hans Gatt in Takotna:

 

Currently on his 24-hour layover, Hans Gatt will be the third musher eligible to depart the Takotna checkpoint; with his starting differential factored in, his layover will conclude at 12:32am early Thursday morning.