Adult Books

Non-Fiction

Title

Author (Copyright Date)

Notes

Adventures of the Iditarod Air Force: True Stories About the Pilots Who Fly for Alaska’s Famous Sled Dog Race

Ted Mattson (1997)

Shares stories of the volunteer pilots’ stories about what happens above the trail.

The Cheechako’s Guide to the Art of Dog Mushing Lavon Barve (2000) Barve completed more than 50,000 miles on dog sled, and here provides tips on mushing, training a lead dog, and preparing for the Iditarod and the Yukon Quest.

The Cruelest Miles: The Heroic Story of Dogs and Men in a Race Against an Epidemic

Gay and Laney Salisbury (2003) The story of the diphtheria epidemic of 1925 and the mushers and dogs who risked everything to save the town of Nome.
Dog Driver: A Guide for the Serious Musher Miki and Julie Collins (1991) Twin sisters Miki and Julie are accomplished mushers who provide their expert counsel.
Dogs of the Iditarod  Jeff Schultz (2002) Photos that capture the personality of the Iditarod’s  K9 athletes. 
Father of the Iditarod: The Joe Redington Story

Lew Freedman (1999)

Redington is known as the Father of the Iditarod for his work toward founding the race, reviving dog mushing, and designating the Iditarod route as a National Historic Trail.
The First Great Race: Alaska’s 1973 Iditarod Dan Seavey (2013, 2016)

Seavey tells the story of the first Iditarod as only a trail wise race veteran can! 

This books is available through the Iditarod store.

George Attla: The Legend of the Sled Dog Trail

Lew Freedman (1993)

Athabaskan Native George Attla overcame many personal challenges to become Alaska’s top sprint racer and renowned trainer whose dogs and their descendants are found in kennels across the state.

Iditarod Classics and

More Iditarod Classics

Lew Freedman (1992 & 2004)

These collections of stories and brief biographies of Iditarod mushers give considerable insight into life on the trail during the race.  The illustrations are by Iditarod veteran and Alaskan artist Jon Van Zyle.

Iditarod the First Ten Years 

The Old Iditarod Gang

This book is a celebration of time and place, the first 10 years of the Iditarod.   More than 400 pages of the history of the Iditarod, told by those that were there, who experienced it from the get go and those first 10 years.

This books is available through the Iditarod store.

Iditarod Glory

Photos: Jeff Schultz

Essay: Brian Patrick O’Donoghue (2005)

Collection of photos from the Iditarod official photographer.

Iditarod: The Great Race to Nome

Bill Sherownit (2019)

Photographs Jeff Schultz

Story of the Iditarod told in quick stories and photographs.
Iditarod Silver

Lew Freedman and Jeff Schultz (1997)

The official Iditarod 25th Anniversary commemorative book is written by Freedman and features the photographs by Schultz.
The Joy of Running Sled Dogs: A Step by Step Guide

Noel Flanders (1988)

Considered a good book on the basics for beginners, Flanders tells how to train for and enjoy the sport in summer with cart and winter with sled.
The Klondike Fever: The Life and Death of the Last Gold Rush Pierre Berton (1985) The Klondike Gold Rush, in which sled dogs were crucial, was significant in Alaska’s history. This book is considered the authoritative account.
The Last Great Race: The Iditarod
Tim Jones (1988) Chronicles the 1979 race which Tim Jones followed by prop plane. 
Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way
Mitch Seavey (2009) Iditarod Champion Mitch Seavey shares all aspects of dog mushing in a humorous and truthful, realistic manner.
Leonhard Seppala: The Siberian Sled Dog and the Golden Age of Sleddog Racing 1908-1941 Bob and Pam Thomas (2015) The Nome Kennel Club was established to sponsor races to decide who had the best dogs. This is a well researched, photo filled treasure trove of information about one of the best: Leonhard Seppala.
Lessons My Sled Dog Taught Me: Humor and Heartwarming Tails from Alaska’s Mushers edited by Tricia Brown (1998) Mushers share tales and tidbits about what it’s really like and why they do it.
One Mush: Jamaica’s Dogsled Team John Firth (2010) Newton Marshall’s story of running sled dog races in the cold, snowy north!
One Second to Glory
Lew Freedman (2001) Dave Mackey’s one-second win over Rick Swenson in the 1978 Iditarod is told in interviews.
Racing Toward Recovery: The Extraordinary Story of Iditarod Musher Mike Williams Sr. and His Race for Sobriety in Alaska Mike Williams Sr. and Lew Freedman (2015) Alaska musher and tribal leader, Mike Williams, tells his story.
The Speed Mushing Manual: How To Train Racing Sled Dogs
Jim Welch (1989) Provides information on training and racing sprint sled dogs.
Spirit of the Wind: The Story of George Attla, Alaska’s Legendary Sled Dog Sprint Champ

Lew Freedman (2001)

Freedman’s biography of Attla follows him from his difficult childhood battling tuberculosis, to his record-setting victory in the 1958 Fur Rendezvous World Championship as a rookie musher, to his position as the most successful sprint racer in history.
Trail Breakers: Pioneering Alaska’s Iditarod Volume 1, Blazing the Last Great Gold Rush Trail in North America, 1840 – 1930
Rod Perry (2009) Rod Perry helps set the record straight  with details,  written with first- hand knowledge about the people, places, and events in history.  
Yukon Quest: The 1,000-Mile Sled Dog Race Through the Yukon and Alaska

John Firth (1998) Firth tells the story of one Quest in detail, and then shares stories from all the races, and lists of finishers and results. 

Winning Strategies for Long Distance Mushers

Joe Runyan (1997) Veteran musher, Joe Runyan, gives advice for succeeding in sled dog races.

 

Memoir

Title

Author (Copyright Date)

Notes

Back of the Pack: An Iditarod Rookie Musher’s Alaska Pilgrimage to Nome Don Bowers (1998) Bowers served as a volunteer for the Iditarod, caught the mushing bug, and here records his personal adventure from raw rookie to finally completing the Iditarod with his own team in 1996.
Beyond Ophir: Confessions of an Iditarod Musher, An Alaskan Odyssey Jim Lanier (2013) Jim Lanier first ran Iditarod in 1979, and his life has never been the same. Here is his story.

Chasing Dogs: My Adventures as the Official Photographer  Alaska’s Iditarod   

Jeff Schultz (2014) Beautiful photographs documenting Schultz’s years as the race photographer accompanied by the stories of his adventures and how he got the shots. 
Cold Hands, Warm Heart
Jeff King (2008) Iditarod Champion Jeff King tells his personal story of being born in California, moving to Alaska, and becoming an Iditarod Champion.  Also sold as audio book, read by Jeff King.

Cold Nights, Fast Trails: Reflections of a Modern Dog Musher

by Dave Olesen (1989) Seven-time Iditarod contestant Dave Olesen reflects on his experience running The World’s Last Great Race.

Dog Man: Chronicles of an Iditarod Champion

Martin Buser (2015) Four-time champion, Martin Buser tells his journey from a childhood overseas to becoming a proud US Citizen and Iditarod champ.

Fast into the Night 

Debbie Clarke Moderow (2016) A memoir of Debbie’s 2003 and 2005 Iditarod races, her dogs, and their journey.
Honest Dogs: A Story of Triumph and Regret from the World’s Toughest Sled Dog Race
Brian Patrick O’Donoghue (1999) At 43, O’Donoghue sees his youth slipping away and, yearning for one more challenge, registers for the 1998 Yukon Quest Sled Dog Race.  The musher’s strategies, hopes, dreams, and disappointments; the antics of the canine athletes, the drama of the race; and the unworldly wilderness venue add texture to this story of a personal journey by a young man who “gets away from it all” in an astonishing way.
Iditarod Dreams: A Year in the Life of Alaskan Sled Dog Racer DeeDee Jonrowe

Lew Freedman with

DeeDee Jonrowe (1995)

Kennel owner and dog racer DeeDee Jonrowe, who began mushing in 1979 and has completed many Iditarod races, reviews a typical year in the life of a top musher.
The Lance Mackey Story

Lance Mackey (2010)

Four-time Iditarod champion Lance Mackey tells the story of his incredible mushing career
Life with Forty Dogs: Misadventures with Runts, Rejects, and Rescues

Joseph Robertia (2017)

A collection of stories from a life filled with forty sled dogs.
My Lead Dog Was a Lesbian: Mushing Across Alaska in the Iditarod – the World’s Most Grueling Race

Brian Patrick O’Donoghue (1996)

O’Donoghue presents a down-to-earth look at his 1991 rookie run in the Iditarod, where he earned the Red Lantern for finishing dead last.
No End In Sight

Rachael Scdoris (2007)

The inspirational story of a legally blind musher who competed in the 2005 Iditarod.
Race Across Alaska: First Woman to Win the Iditarod Tells Her Story

Libby Riddles and Tim Jones (1988)

Riddles made history in 1985, becoming the first woman to win the Iditarod and consequently being named the Women’s Sports Foundation Professional Sportswoman of the Year.  Besides a personal account, this book provides detailed background information about all that goes into training for and running the Iditarod.
Running North: A Yukon Adventure Ann Mariah Cook (1998) This memoir chronicles Cook, her husband, three-year-old daughter, and 32 Siberian Huskies through the trials and rewards of pursuing their dream to compete in the Yukon Quest Sled Dog Race.

Running with Champions: A Midlife Journey on the Iditarod Trail

Lisa Frederic (2006)

Frederic chronicles her progression from Iditarod tourist, to volunteer, to musher.

Shadows on the Koyukuk: An Alaskan Native’s Life

Sidney Huntington (1993)

In his autobiography, elder Sidney Huntington recounts his adventures, including his time spent delivering mail by dog team.

Ten Thousand Miles with a Dog Sled: A Narrative of Winter Travel in Interior Alaska and

A Winter Circuit of Our Arctic Coast: A Narrative of a Journey with Dog Sleds

Hudson Stuck (1914, 1988, 2015)

Hudson Stuck was a British native who became an Episcopal priest. This book recounts his circuit from Canada to Nome.

This Much Country

Kristin Knight Pace (2020)

After a heartbreaking divorce, Pace moves to a cabin outside of Denali and becomes one of the few women to complete both the Iditarod and the Yukon Quest.

Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube: Chasing Fear and Finding Home in the Great White North

Blair Braverman (2017)

Blair tells her story of leaving home and moving to Norway to learn to drive sled dogs.

Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod

Gary Paulsen (1994)

Perhaps best known as an author of young adult books, Paulsen tells of the intensity, frustrations, humor and ultimate satisfaction of preparing for and running the Iditarod in 1983.  

 

Fiction

Title: Author (Copyright Date): Notes:
Ballad of the Northland
Jason Barron (2010)
The story of a young boy growing up in South Central Alaska where his adoptive family lives a hand to mouth existence, until one day he learns about the great race from Anchorage to Nome and his life changes.
Murder on the Iditarod Trail Sue Henry (1991) A mystery set during the Iditarod sled dog race, as trooper Alex Jenson has a homicide investigation on his hands during the big race.