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A Denali Destination

Where Dogs are King

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Sweepstakes Re-cap…well kinda

Getting ready for the start!

Getting ready for the start!

Whew! Was that just a dream, or did I really just run 408 miles in 61 hours? Good lord, what a rodeo we had in Nome for the All Alaska Sweepstakes. I don’t really know where to begin – or finish…it might be material for another book!

I’m in Denali, but just for the day as I fly back to Nome for the Sweepstakes awards banquet tomorrow. All flights in and out of Nome were cancelled today due to stormy weather, so I’m on the edge of my chair in anticipation of tomorrow’s departure. Donna encouraged me the other day to come spend a couple of days at home and head back for the banquet, and it has been wonderful to be in my own bed.

Jeff & Jason on the trail, pre-race.

Jeff & Jason on the trail, pre-race.

No doubt anyone who’s reading this knows Mitch Seavey passed me in the last miles of this $100,000 winner-take-all event, and as a result it was bittersweet – my team was so awesome! My team IS so awesome! Wish I could take a little fountain of youth juice because I have so many things that I want to do with my dogs in years to come. I feel like we learned so much about them ~ in this race in particular, and I look forward to using what we learned for future generations of dogs and mushers.

Jeff & team heading into the Council checkpoint on race Day 1.

Jeff & team heading into the Council checkpoint on race Day 1.

We had a little champagne toast with family and friends Sunday night. Jason and I gave a blow by blow account – I wish I’d have recorded it because I don’t have the energy to do it again now (there will be a $5 fee for whining!).

Jason & UConn outside the "Mobile Dog Unit"

Jason & UConn outside the “Mobile Dog Unit”

There’s been a lot of interest in dogs for sale – we did spend a little time on it today. Look for it soon – very soon!

I promise I’ll try to share more Sweepstakes stories in the days to come.

jk (alias POTUS)

...and what's inside the "Mobile Dog Unit"?? The team - ready for a snooze.

…and what’s inside the “Mobile Dog Unit”?? The team – ready for a snooze.


  1. Congrats Jeff! Yes, bittersweet ending…I was sooo bummed when I saw the end result times between you and Mitch!
    YES!YES!YES! another book please!!!!!!!!!! I can’t get your first book out of my head. Read it in a week…record breaker for me! EXCELLENT.

  2. Ah,yes, fountain of youth juice. Don’t we all wish that a magic potient was available to help us all stay young to do ALL the things that we love to do forever! Father Time waits for no man (or woman). I think, Jeff, that you hit the nail on the head when you mentioned sharing all that you have learned about mushing with future mushers. When I was about your age, it dawned on me that I was developing something they call wisdom based on experience. Hmmmmmmmm…

    In my minds eye, nothing separated you and Mr. Seavey. You both came in first. He just got paid for it and you gained some wisdom. Uncle Sam will take forty percent of his reward. No one can take yours!

    Looking forward to more insights from the Sweeps especially about Mackey’s encounter with the iron dog. There is no doubt in my mind that you would have had your dog looked at immediately.

  3. Jeff,

    I am dying to hear your story about the sweepstakes. I saw that you rested there so I was sure you were good to go. When I got up to check the computer, I found out Mitch won! I will be checking back for the details. Great job and great job on the Iditarod. I wish one of them would have been a 1st but two seconds isn’t bad!


  4. Jeff,
    Congrats on a great run! It has been exciting following you all of March. What a treat for all of your fans. Man, could it have been any closer? What a race!
    I love the doggie sleepover picture! Looks like a bunch of kids piled on the livingroom floor!
    A big hello to all at Husky Homestead from your friends in Nebraska!
    Take care and have safe travels.
    Judi & Students

  5. I have no idea what to do now that my armchair racing adventures are over until next March! My class was cheering for you last week and two kids chose you for their extra credit musher reports.
    Thanks for getting me obssessed with dog sled racing.


  6. Ditto on getting me hooked on dogsledding! I enjoyed the posting and look forward to more details. What great races you ran the last month! Can’t wait till next year!! And, can’t wait to hear your insights & lessons learned about the dogs. We’ll stay tuned.


  7. Jeff,
    I have a question regarding how you pick out what is good structure/conformation for your sled dogs? I know in your book you talked about having certain aspects to be a good sled dog but nothing was mentioned about what type of structure you might want. My other question is about your ManMat harnesses…I use one on one of my dogs for skijoring and it works really great for her…I noticed you have a newer model this year w/ D rings on the side?

  8. I sure wish there was more coverage on TV on the East Coast with the Iditarod! We don’t get Versus where we are. Glad to have the insider info, though! The sweepstakes was tough as the website was jumpy and the info wasn’t as up to date as the Iditarod info was. I check back at this site every couple of days. I LOVE reading the posts. Jeff, I wrote in an current email to you guys that I had just finished the book and was giving it to my Dad to read (listen). He finished it in less than a week and agreed with me… FANTASTIC. Now Mom has her hands on it. I was very Excited to read your comment about “another book”!!! Yes,Yes,Yes!!! I look forward to reading more on the blog in the upcoming days. Hope you made it back to Nome with no problems or delays, though I am glad you took Donna’s encouragement and visited home for a few days. I can’t imagine all of the logistics of the last month. You all did GREAT!!! Congrat!!! Keep up the great work!!! AND take a breather, too :-)

  9. Can’t say enough about how much your comments are appreciated. You bring the personal side to the races. Don’t give up!!! No whining!!!! Coming in second within minutes in two long races to me is unimaginable.

    I’m going to echo what one of the other bloggers said – the Mackey accident was a tragedy, but there is a reason you have received the Humanitarian Award in the Iditarod – I can’t imagine you mushing with injured dogs 18miles or waiting overnight to get care. Enough said.

    Please don’t forgot us bloggers in the off-season and keep us posted on what I guess is now the beginning of prep for the next season. Keep up the great work. Wisdom will trump youth over time….

    So what does POTUS stand for???

  10. Jeff, You are truly a ‘king’ not just in name only. As a 78 year old lady I followed and logged each day of the Iditarod and the Sweepstakes. Your kindness and concern for your family and your dogs impresses me. Next year the Iditarod win #5 is yours! God bless you, your family and your kennel full of dogs.

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