“Unless there’s a big earthquake, one of us is going to win,” Mitch Seavey predicted about himself and his son, Dallas, during his layover in White Mountain.
In Unalakleet, mushers were hoping to hop, skip, and leap-frog their teams toward the top ten. “It’s gonna be a crowded party at White Mountain,” Kelly Maixner says. “I’d better go get there.”
Aliy Zirkle does not intend to race for first in Iditarod 2016. She, and Wade Marrs, are striving to hold on to their 4th- and 5th-position standings as they mush towards Nome.
It’s become a close race between Brent Sass and Mitch and Dallas Seavey, as the three jockey for position and scramble through the final checkpoints of Iditarod 44.
A Sunday-night sampler of images from Nulato to Unalakleet to Koyuk along the Iditarod Trail.
Unalakleet was buzzing overnight as Iditarod mushers and their dog teams arrived on the Bering Sea Coast. Their sense of urgency was palpable.
Iditarod’s mid-pack racers are struggling, but for different reasons. For some, the difficulty is the race itself, but for others, it’s the challenges inside the lives they’re away from while out on the trail.
We caught up with Brent Sass at a remote shelter cabin along the trail between Kaltag and Unalakleet as the dogs rested in a midday sun Saturday.
On Saturday, Zirkle did not want to talk about her recent collision with a snowmachine. She says she wants to focus on maintaining a positive attitude for her dogs.
After the shock of the snowmachine collision that injured one of her sled dogs — and killed one of Jeff King’s — Aliy Zirkle, still shaken, was greeted warmly in the Kaltag checkpoint on Saturday.