Author: Terrie Hanke (624 posts)


Eye on the Jr: Ten Teens Take the Trail

It was a busy morning on Knik Lake!  Parents and ten teens, each with ten dogs arrived well before the 10:00 am start time of Jr. Iditarod XLIV.  The dog trucks and trailers parked in a semi-circle around the start banner.  The dogs were brought out for water and a pre-race meal then the mushers …

Eye on the Jr: Gary and Carolee Johannes Honored

The Jr. Iditarod Board of Directors has named Gary and Carolee Johannes as the Honorary Musher for the 44th running of the race.  The Jr. Iditarod mushers will sign bib #1 and present it to Gary and Carolee in recognition of their service over the past thirteen years. Trail boss Richard Plack says, “Both Gary …

Eye on the Jr: Rookies with Family ties to Jr. Iditarod and Iditarod

Two rookie mushers competing in the 2021 Jr. Iditarod have family ties going back, way back, in both the Jr. Iditarod and the Iditarod.  It’s extremely exciting to see this younger generation of mushers take to the trail in Jr. Iditarod.  These two young women carry on the sled dog legacy of families that were …

Eye on the Jr:  Meet 5 Rookies in the Class of 2021

Kids come to mushing through many different circumstances.  Sometimes, it’s purely coincidental and other times it’s a family affair.  Some get into the sport after being introduced by neighbors or friends while others follow older brothers and sisters down the trail.  Whatever brought them to dogs, these are dedicated young mushers who have worked hard …

Eye on the Jr: Meet the 2021 Jr. Iditarod Veterans

While so many things have changed over the past year, there are a few that thankfully keep us anchored in time.  The 44th Jr. Iditarod is set to begin as always on the last Saturday of February. That’s the traditional day for the Jr. Iditarod, a week ahead of the Iditarod.  The start time of …

Eye on the JR: History of the Jr. Iditarod

This February will mark the 44th running of the Jr. Iditarod.  The Junior, just like the Iditarod, began as a dream.  It was Joe Redington who dreamed of a long distance race across Alaska to commemorate the place of the sled dog in the history of Alaska and bring recognition to the Historic Iditarod Trail.  …

Eye on the Trail – Iditarod Mushers Run Mid-Distance Races

Mushers have just completed food drops in both Fairbanks and Anchorage.  Earlier in February straw was bagged and placed on pallets to be ready for shipping, likewise with HEET and lath.  Preparations for Iditarod XLIX are moving along.  As race fans, how are you preparing for the race? Since the first of the year there …

Eye on the Trail:  Straw, HEET and Lath Ready to Ship

Straw, HEET and trail markers for Iditarod 2021 Gold Trail Loop are ready to ship out to checkpoints.  Volunteers bagged the straw, organized cases of HEET and thousands of lath trail markers, placed them on pallets then shrink wrapped the goods making it ready for shipping.  What goes on behind the scenes to make this …

Eye on the Trail: Iditarod and Flat @ Mile 432

Have you ever wondered where the word or name Iditarod came from?  I’ve heard 3 explanations.  First, Iditarod was a word used by Athabascans that meant FAR DISTANT PLACE.  Second, Iditarod was a word from another indigenous language that meant CLEAR WATER. Finally, a ROD is a measure of distance and so one miner might …

Eye on the Trail: Remembering Yentna Station’s Dan Gabryszak

Master of the Yentna Station Roadhouse, Dan Gabryszak, succumbed to cancer on January 12, 2021 just eight days after being diagnosed.  Dan and his wife Jean have called the lodge on the big bend of the Yentna River home for forty years.  Early on, the Jr. Iditarod asked the Gabryszaks to host a checkpoint and …