Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Challenging Yukon Quest Sled Dog Race Prepares for 35th Annual Event

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Challenging Yukon Quest Sled Dog Race Prepares for 35th Annual Event

Article excerpt

Mushers prepare for gruelling Yukon Quest race

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WHITEHORSE - Twenty-six mushers and their dogs have one more day of rest before the teams hit the trail for the 35th annual Yukon Quest sled dog race, renowned as one of the toughest such events on the planet.

The international event, covering 1,609 kilometres, begins Saturday in Fairbanks, Alaska, with the winner due to cross the finish line in Whitehorse nine or 10 days later.

Despite unseasonably warm weather in some parts of Yukon, race official Natalie Haltrich says conditions in Alaska are excellent.

The mushers, including last year's winner, 26-year-old Alaska resident Matt Hall, must scale three mountain peaks, pass through five check points and cover 241 kilometres before crossing the border into Yukon just west of Dawson City.

In Canada, the racers and their teams of 14 dogs, must go through another four checkpoints and get past the 1,234-metre high King Solomon's Dome peak before reaching the Whitehorse finish line. …

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