Cim Smyth and his team reach Kaltag after 150 miles on the frozen Yukon River, mushing into winds of up to 40 mph. Wind chills during the Iditarod this year have reached -45 degrees F. "Brutal winds have slowed the 37th Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race to a crawl." ADN photos and race coverage here.
Three dogs dead, so far. Two from Lou Packer's team died during an awful night on the trail. Packer described the situation for a reporter, and I listened to the audio ["Lou Packer discusses the life-threatening weather"] and thought, two good dogs died on account of this chucklehead?! Packer zipped himself into his sled bag and apparently left the dogs outside in the blizzard to fend for themselves. From the ADN:
Iditarod officials confirmed the dog deaths and said necropsies were planned to determine how the animals died. Thin-coated huskies have been an issue of concern among Iditarod veterinarians in recent years. Concerns have been growing that such dogs might fall victim to exposure.Gosh darn it [slaps forehead] — now you tell us!
Dunno if the Iditarod is still the race I hate to love. The race I hate to hate, maybe. No belt buckle is worth a dead dog.
Iditarod links, and a moment of silence, dammit