Meet the 2015 Iditarod Team!

February 27, 2015

I haven’t run the Iditarod since 2012.  I can’t wait to do it again. This will be my 7thyear, I have finished all the previous six. 

This year we partnered with my old friends Ed and Tasha Stielstra, and Nature’s Kennel   from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.   I was a handler for Ed back when I first took up mushing and have run puppy teams for him in several previous races.   Ed is a veteran musher and 7-time finisher of the Iditarod.  

Ed is not running this year.   We brought 15 youngsters and 3 Iditarod veterans from Nature’s Kennel down to Idaho in September.   The last post showed the training cabin and kennel we set up for the campaign.   This post is a quick chance to meet the 2015 Iditarod team.

Pictured in order are Ayun, Belly Button, Blast, Digger & Gordon, Henry, James, Joe Cool, Mukluk, Scott, Thomas, Stu, and Woodstock.

Team members who weren’t on the run the day we took the yearbook pictures are Krister, Linus, Loafer, Pig Pen, and Clog.

The goal with a puppy team is to show them a great time on their first trip down the Iditarod Trail.  We won’t be trying to be first at halfway, or to finish in a particular place this year.   Team size for the Iditarod is 16.  We will have 13 to 14 puppies and 2-3 veterans to make up the race team.  All 18 have trained incredibly well and hard.  They have come a long way since the long drive down from Michigan.   They are all race ready, and it’s going to be hard to leave two of them off the final team.  They will return back home to Ed, Tasha, and Nature’s Kennel after the race.   I am sure many of them will be Iditarod veterans with Ed for years to come.