I am hesitant to leave the house today….. Jeff is taking his 24 hour break in Takotna and this is the time I can expect a phone call and update on his race and the dogs. It appears as though all’s well on the trail for Jeff and the team: great position and run times. The folks in Takotna will take good care of him., as usual! I counted 22 teams in Takotna this morning with five teams going through. I know they all look forward to getting a steak personally prepared just for them at this homey and accommodating checkpoint. Jeff was thinking about his long-time friends and this welcoming village well before the race even began! A special thanks to them for all that they do for the Iditarod and the teams!
I believe Jeff’s 24-hour break will be about 25 hours and 52 minutes meaning that he will be able to leave at about 12:40 am. You may remember that it is during this long break where the time differential of the race starting positions is equalized. Therefore the only team actually taking a 24 hour break is Judy Currier wearing bid number 72.
Some observations from yesterday’s runs: the run across the Burn was more forgiving than predicted. Jeff stated in the Iditarod Insider video that he had a problem-free run. He didn’t pick up his second sled in McGrath either, indicating no major structural issues with his starting sled. His team was screaming as they went through McGrath. That is a sound that warms a musher’s heart!
I have not heard a trail report for the trail ahead but expect that it should be good going. We were surprised with 8 inches of fresh snow here in Denali yesterday. Fabulous!
I will send along another update after I speak with Jeff today
Meanwhile, Dave DeCaro and our full team of 16, crazy puppies arrive into Nikolai early this morning. Dave is staying right on track for a perfect race!