Trent and the team are through Nulato and in to Kaltag.

March 14

Eighty-four more trails miles and an 8 hour rest in the Nulato checkpoint since departing Galena, and the team is off the Yukon River and in the village of Kaltag.   They arrived at Kaltag at 223P AKT this afternoon, arriving with 14 dogs.  The next push is off river and along the portage to Unalakleet and reaching the Bering Sea.  It's a good long 85 mile run that is generally broken in 2, there are several traveler cabins along the way.  

Not sure what Trent's rest and run plans will be in the checkpoint and on the way over.   There is a great pizza place called Peace on Earth right next to the Unalakleet checkpoint that many mushers try to include, and that makes a landing in Unalakleet somewhere between 11A and 9P highly desirable.  

Trent and the team are in and out of Galena

Trent and the team arrived in Galena just after noon and left again just before 730P AKT after a good rest in the warm part of the day.   Trent finally left one of the team behind, to fly back to Anchorage, and departed Galena with 15 dogs on the team.  Trent left Galena in 66th place of 77 teams still in the race.

Galena is 545 miles down the trail.   Next check point at Nulato is another 37 miles, and the last checkpoint on the Yukon at Kaltag is 47 miles past that.  From Kaltag it is a long 85 mile portage off the Yukon to the Bering Sea Coast at Unalakleet.  

The last 10 mushers from Galena to Nulato have been taking 7 hours for that leg, averaging just over 5 mph so it must be windy and slow moving along the Yukon right now.  Expect Trent to pull in to Nulato at 3-4A AKT and stop for a rest.  

Trent and the team are in and out of Ruby

March 13

Trent and the team hit the Yukon River and checked in to Ruby last night at about 815P AKT.  Trent declared his 8 hour mandatory rest on the Yukon and pulled the hook at about 530A AKT this morning.  All 16 dogs are still pulling, one of only 5 teams with all dogs still in the game.  The next town on the Yukon is Galena, 50 miles up river.  He should be there on this run and by mid-day today to rest at Galena in the warmth of the day.  Trent is running 65th out of 77 mushers still in the race.  

Trent and the team are out of Cripple

March 12

Trent and the team checked out of Cripple at 527A AKT after a 8-1/2 hour rest.   That is a good long rest.  It's 70 miles to the Ruby checkpoint and the Yukon River.   All 16 dogs are still on the team bus heading out of Cripple.   Trent is in 68th place of the 80 mushers still running.

Trent and the team are in to Cripple

The team checked in to Cripple at 826P AKT.  It was about a 14 hour run from Ophir covering the 73 miles with a good rest in the warm, middle of the day.   It looked like Trent and Lance Mackey traveled together the first half of the trip until Trent camped and Lance when straight on a long Lance run to to Cripple.

Trent still has some running hours "before 10" and may choose to go a few miles towards Ruby to camp with the team.   The next checkpoint Ruby, is where the Northern Route first hits the Yukon River and marks another big milestone/change in the trail.  

Cripple is really an imaginary place that almost doesn't exist except for the fact that gold mining once took place in the location back in the early part of the 20th century.   The Iditarod volunteers that man Cripple each even year build a nice village that is the halfway point in the race.

Picture of Trent checking in to Cripple in the 2012 race, and the 3 forms of heat and locomotion required for travel in the Alaskan interior.

Trent is in and out of Ohpir.

March 11

Trent left the steak and cherry pie at Takotna at about 800P AKT last night after a nice 2 hour 40 minute stay.   The team then made the 23 mile run to Ophir in 2 hours 40 minutes at an average speed of 8.63 mph.   They arrived at 10:38P and checked out at 438A this morning.  The team left with all 16 dogs.   Trent is back on his "4 to 10" schedule.   I notice on the tracker that Trent is running this leg with Lance Mackey.     I bet they will travel the whole way to Cripple, 73 miles 12-14 hours including rest, together.   Look forward to the story.

Trent checked out of Ophir in 64th place out of 80 mushers still in the race.  There are about 25 mushers between Ophir and Cripple right now.   Cripple is going to be busy as they arrive there this evening.  

Trent must be lounging in Takotna eating steak...

He's been there almost 2 hours now after a 2 hour run!   Can't say I would blame him.   Also a good chance to socialize with mushers on their 24.

I was curious.   Only 10 of the remaining 80 teams still have all 16 dogs running.   All 16 on the team are still heading down the trail with Trent at the moment, getting their Iditarod stripes.   Great job.   

Trent and the team out of McGrath and in to Takotna...

March 10

Trent checked out of McGrath at 1:50P AKT this afternoon after taking his mandatory 24 hour rest.   This is where Trent had planned pre-race to take his 24.   The team just arrived in Takotna at 4:15 AKT with all 16 dogs still working the harnesses.  They covered the 18 miles in 2 hours 25 minutes at an average speed of 7.45 mph.

Takotna has a legendary reputation among mushers for hospitality, and Trent will have been offered a steak when he checked in.   I bet he'll just have them give him a bag lunch and head for the next check point at Ophir immediately given he just finished his 24.  

The team is in 66th out of 80 teams still running, but that is a bit deceiving as Trent took his 24 and about 14 teams ahead of him have not completed their 24 yet.  He'll probably settle back in to 55th or so once everyone has equalized time by taking their 24.   Very promising that the full team is still out there.   23 miles to Ophir then 73 miles to Cripple.  Trent will likely stop and camp somewhere 20-30 miles after Ophir.   I think he'll take a short break on the way and stop close to 10 tonight to get back on his "4 to 10" run schedule.  

Trent and the team are in to McGrath...

Just checked in at 12:47PM AKT.   They left Nikolai at 7:06AM, so the run over took 5 hours 41 minutes which had them travelling at an average speed of 8.54 miles per hour; right in the middle of what teams have been running that in. Trent checks in to McGrath in 53rd place out of 81 teams still in the race.

Let's see if Trent takes his mandatory 24 hour rest there.  That was pre-race plan.  

Trent pulls out of Nikolai...

March 9

Trent pulled out of Nikolai at 706AM AKT this morning.   He checked out with all 16 dogs so the team must be doing well.   Trent left Nikolai in 54th place of the 82 remaining mushers.  

He got it to Nikolai at 1106PM last evening.  That makes his stay exactly 8 hours which makes me wonder if he knew he wanted more than 4-5 hours rest and declared his 8 hour mandatory rest so that he could be more flexible down the trail.   Hope they had a great rest and a couple of good meals.

Next checkpoint is McGrath, race times in to McGrath have been 5-1/2 to 6 hours so expect to see the team pull in to McGrath at 1PM-ish today.   As mentioned, Trent said before the race he intended to 24 in McGrath.   If he does, that would put him back out on the trail at 1PM in the heat of the day.   I'd say it's 50%/50% that he rests in McGrath and heads back out in the colder part of the day to take his 24 down the trail.   We shall see.   

The race at the front is really moving fast, with probably 10 teams including Dallas and Mitch Seavy that are bearing down on the halfway prize at Cripple... they will arrive there later today!