Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Dallas Wins Again...So Why Am I Not on Team Dallas?

 he's very competitive and athletic and quite possibly could break all sorts of Iditarod records...maybe get his 5 wins by age 30.  he came in this am around 6am followed by his dad Mitch Seavey a few hours later i believe.
 i just can't get excited about either Seavey winning. why is that i asked myself.
 they are too much about the competition i think.  there is a spirit to the iditarod that isn't really a competitive one.  that seems lost on Dallas.  perhaps it's his youth and lack of perspective.  in the early days of the "race" it could take teams weeks and weeks to finish this thing.  campfires were built and teams would hang out and have a beer after a days run.
 there was a social aspect of it that gets lost more and more each year and will be almost totally lost with a winning streak by Dallas.  he just lacks that quirky personality.  he's like a robot taking a team north. he's all about the numbers and the win and not about the ride.
 life is about the ride.  that level of seriousness isn't good for anyone...especially not the Iditarod.  hard to see him even crack a smile.
 these are from the ice sculpture championships which were in Fairbanks the same time as the restart.  have always been wanting to check them out but wasn't too into driving all that way just for these.  this cheetah above was actually replicated on a smaller scale in Anchorage.
 these championships are international. i stopped by on the way to pick my friends up for dinner and then we snuck in after it was have to get in by 10pm, but they let you kick around after. i had my stamp so i was good i guess.  we all went in the exit when the tourists exited.  we just made a quick loop around and my friends went down the ice slide once.
 could i have spent more time there, possibly, but it was a bit chilly.  for sure below zero.
 here is the slide made of least one of them. the place is super kid friendly with loads of smaller slides and mazes and spinning ice games for them.
 Aaron came in 3rd after breaking trail for Dallas after a hard snow. i think Aily pretty much did the same for Jessie Royer who looks like she will finish before her.  breaking trail like that can really wear your team down.  i think actually Aily was a bit annoyed but it is what it is.  perhaps she was just feeling tired and a wee bit frustrated with not getting that #1 spot. i suspect Dallas will be in that position for some time or near to it.
 the trail and the weather can be can a team of dogs.
 i suspect that teams with dogs who have been to Nome before have some memory of it and know where they are and that the run will soon be over and they will be able to rest.  dogs are smart and they remember stuff i never would have expected them to.
 once you hit White Mountain for your 8 hour rest, i  think some dogs know the end is near.  probably gives them some extra energy.
 i am not competitive in general.  i like to get a good hit in when i play a sport of any kind, but actually winning isn't really that important.  more how i play.  i'm more about the fun of the game than the competition of it.
 the sculptures look very different at night all lit up.
 these crazy sun dogs were seen the next morning.  this is taken from a Fred Meyers parking lot . was pretty cool. these others are of the hot springs in Chena.
 it took me 7.5 hours to get up to Fairbanks from Anchorage in bad conditions. its taken me longer in the summer.  for sure i stop more for photo's but i think the biggest factor is road construction.  you never do this run without hitting road construction that slows you down.
 last night was supposed to be another good aurora night. i had assumed i was working t-w-th but when i looked again i was scheduled for w-th-fr this week.  so i headed out there after 10pm or near there. it was a good show.  lots of dog photo's to get to before i show those pictures.  Karen helped me a bit with settings and then i just played and enjoyed the show.
 i didn't stay out as long as they did, they had gotten there before me.  it was a wee bit chillier there than here.  i had wet hair, which was probably not smart.
 i hit the gym before i headed north to Talkeetna.  25 laps and before that i did 25 min on the bike and 10 min of rowing.  on the way out to Talkeetna i stopped for a happy meal...ok, i know, that pretty much defeats the exercise.  my knee is a bit overworked i can feel, but also improved swelling. will head back to bed soon as i got to bed around 5:30 or 6 am after looking at my aurora pics
 at one point the aurora went nuts, colors, sheets.  beautiful.  my pictures couldn't ever capture it all but it was fun watching it all.
 Rio joined for a walk of Rovers Run.  my gps thing said it was nearly 5 had kept talking to me and i couldn't figure out why.  i think it messed it up though, no way that walk is nearly 5 miles.  3.5-4 maybe.
 we walked into the "ice Museum" a bit spendy but is always on the must do once it's checked off.  more of a bar than a museum.  my friends bought the drink i passed.  just took a sip of one of theirs.
 these were at the Creamers Field where i took a short walk before heading back to Anchorage.
 apparently some snow geese are headed north to Alaska and somewhere in the mid west they started to fall from the sky dead.  they suspect some sort of bird virus got them.  it can do that i guess.  there were over 1000 dead birds though. such pretty birds, what a bummer.
 due to the sub zero temps in Fairbanks, i did not walk long.  -25 at Creamers.
 these are at Nenana. these are still the wide angle.  there are still snap shots from the road with the little camera and all of the zoom shots to go through.  we will be seeing dogs for a bit...they are so cute, who could complain?
 old rail cars on the banks of the Nenana River

 remnants of the dogs passing through..the hay.  they rested her before heading on to the next check point at Manly Hot Springs.
 this checkpoint was used that day but by the time i went by there was little left there to show it had been a checkpoint in the big race.  the hay, some heet, the race markers and a few signs.
 the teams came up in town to rest and this is the point they went back down on the river.

 a boat by a house.
 the actuall check point
 ride south, i pulled over a few times
 Jeff King apparently had a strange encounter with an aggressive seal out on the ice.  some wondered if he had hallucinated it, but he insists it was a real thing.  a photographer had had an encounter with a seal out there that same stretch so i tend to believe him.  some don't like his personality, but at least he has personality.
 just some scenes right before getting to Denali National Park.
 back to bed for this tired  aurora chaser, i do have work tonight.
thankful for: A.  a great and amazing aurora show, worth the drive B.  safe travels, always welcome C a day off that wasn't expected.  now back for my 3!

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