John Baker and Martin Buser contemplate the race from Unalakleet Monday.
Maixner is swapping out sleds and getting ready to run with his team. “If there’s a leader, they’re ready to go. They trust in the person leading the pack as well as trusting in me, I guess,” said Maixner.
Thomas Waerner’s team was looking skinny in Unalakleet. He’s been feeding his dogs hearty meals but can’t get their weight up. “Meat and kibble,” the Norwegian musher says, just like he feeds the dogs back home. But it’s not the same meat and kibble in Alaska.
Aaron Burmeister may have been the first musher to the coast, but Dallas Seavey is now in front on the way to Nome.
Tucked within a grove of trees, and nestled between two mountains, Tripod Flats cabin serves as a secluded oasis between Kaltag and Unalakleet along the Iditarod trail.
Aliy Zirkle led Iditarod 2015 out of Koyukuk late Saturday morning, followed into the evening by Aaron Burmeister, Jeff King, Jessie Royer, and Dallas and Mitch Seavey. These frontrunners jockeyed for lead on the 154 mile run to the coast.
Burmeister, first into Unalakleet, is comfortable on the coast. “I felt right at home when the wind started blowing,” said the Nome musher. According to Race Marshall Mark Nordman, mushers should arrive Tuesday.
Stepping into Huslia was like “stepping back in time” for veteran musher Dee Dee Jonrowe.
“I had a big master plan to go almost nonstop,” says Anderson. But his plan—and his sled—had to adapt to meet his team’s needs on this new and unpredictable trail.
The brothers have been traveling as a duo since Tanana, where Lance Mackey’s hands first gave him trouble in the sub-zero temperatures. But Jason Mackey says he isn’t doing his brother any favors — he’s just lucky to be learning from an Iditarod legend.