It's one of the best collections of sled dog photos ever, all posted at The Big Picture. Most are from Europe, including the gem below. Look! Bijou is herding!
Meanwhile, the Iditarod is just around the corner. Drug tests this year — for the mushers:
The Iditarod plans to test mushers for drugs and alcohol in March, a change many mushers have no problem with -- but one that three-time champion Lance Mackey scoffs at.As a supporter of California's "legalize it, regulate it and tax it" initiative, I'm rooting for Lance. [Full disclosure: your blogger never smoked, but did inhale. Damn dorm-room hippies.]
"I think it's a little bit ridiculous," Mackey said Wednesday night from his home near Fairbanks after a training run. "It is a dog race, not a human race. It (using a drug) doesn't affect the outcome of the race."
Mackey, a throat cancer survivor who has a medical marijuana card, admits to using marijuana on the trail and thinks his success has made some of his competitors jealous.
"It isn't the reason I've won three years in a row," said Mackey, though he concedes marijuana helps him stay awake and focused during the 1,100-mile race that takes winners nearly 10 days to complete. [ADN]
I'll watch the Iditarod as always, though each year it feels more like a countdown to the inevitable dog deaths. Six dogs died last year. And yes, they "love to run"; but breeding dogs with off-the-charts drive and then pushing them not merely beyond their capacity but to their deaths — holy crap, Iditarod people, this is not what the serum run to Nome was all about. Wake up, smell the medical marijuana, and create an exciting race that doesn't kill dogs every frikkin' year.
Iditarod links, and a moment of silence, dammit