{Tsuga Siberians}

May 26th, 2007 - “Sue's Can-Am 250”

The night before my first Can-Am 250 on the runners, I had a good night’s sleep which was surprising since I didn’t think I would. I kept the mind set that I was just “handling” which was the game I played to control my nerves. Morning came and after getting dressed and trying to choke down some food we went to the staging area to prepare for the start.

Mike and I started to get our sleds ready for the race. As expected, Mike was efficient and focused; I on the other hand tend to talk a lot when I’m nervous. My Dad and Linda were there to cheer us on and as I packed the sled I happily chatted away. I really appreciated having many great people around.

Since Mike and I were leaving about ½ hour apart I could not see him leave the start line. As he started to put his dogs on the gang line, I dropped my team from the truck. OK, now I started to get really nervous and almost tossed my small breakfast. The plan was to bootie all the dogs the whole race, so with shaking hands I started to get the dogs dressed. Bob O’Hearn was such a great friend and support. He helped me put harnesses on and also helped to control my nerves. Putting booties on the dogs is one chore that I insist on doing myself, so if one comes off I can’t blame someone else… Twelve dogs…48 paws… shaking hands…I’m doing this… I had three dogs ready and working on the fourth when someone came up to me and said “10 minutes… you leave in 10 minutes…” Ahhh!! 8 more dogs to bootie, still need to put the dogs on the gang line, and get to the start line… I’m never going to make it!! Panic sets in…Thank you, thank you, thank you to Bob for having a watch and telling me I still had plenty of time before my actual start time… Just what I needed…


Packing sleds

Don't get in Sue's way (just kidding)

Sue's off!  250 miles to go...

Sue waves to Tammy

Again many thanks to Bob for staying with me and keeping me from going insane before the race, and everyone else who was there to give me support and encouragement. The start was a bit blurry…
OK, time to leave the start line of the 2007 Can-Am 250 and I am running with 12 of my best friends… My team as we left the start line was: Squiggle and Mugs in lead, Lotus and Moon, Trip and Molly, Kobuk and Isis, Reba and Eliza, and in wheel, Ambler and Cassin.

Sue's Team:

Kobuk
(M)
8 yrs old

Mugs
(F)
4 yrs old

Squiggle
(F)
8 yrs old

Molly
(F)
2 yrs old

Lotus
(F)
1 yr old

Moon
(F)
1 yr old

Trip
(F)
1 yr old

Isis
(F)
1 yr old

Eliza
(F)
1 yr old

Reba
(F)
1 yr old

Cassin
(F)
1 yr old

Ambler
(M)
4 yrs old

Three dogs who have experience, one dog who is 2 years old, eight yearlings and eight girls in heat… This should be fun…5…4…3…2…1…Go! And we are off and running down main street…
I have traveled down Main Street just one time before and that was sitting on top of our sled with Mike entered in the race, but this is a whole new experience. This will be my first time running any race at the Can-Am, so why not go big… 250 miles of Maine wilderness… I thought it would be a bigger blur, but I saw many familiar faces such as my Dad and Linda and our host “Mom” Tammy Mitchell. Thanks, guys!

I know that Squiggle is not my fastest leader, but she knows the trail and the routine. This could be Squiggle’s last long race so she deserved the glory of leaving the start line in lead. About 3 miles in I decided to switch Squiggle out and put Trip in lead… Although Trip is young (and in season L) she has led many training runs over the season and I though she could do it and we would go faster… Not the case… Trip was not interested in leading and we ended up in a big tangle when she went to see Ambler, who was in wheel position… I still hadn’t calmed down yet so this did not help… A few faster teams came by as I figured out the mess… OK, Trip, not interested in running lead? What about you, Lotus? Oh yeah, we are off and running again…

I noticed that booties didn’t look too good so I stopped to check. Main Street had shredded most of the booties and I changed the majority of the team. I had a whole change of booties for the team, but decided I better conserve the ones I had. The first 8 miles are on the rail bed and I was about to turn off into the woods when I came along a safety checkpoint… Along the racecourse there are safety checkpoints where volunteers “camp out” and wait for teams to go by. As teams pass they radio in your time and they can also provide help to all mushers if needed… As I pass, the volunteers tell me that I have a message… Oh a message… It came from Mike… “Change your booties” I had done that already, but I had a moment to reflect and know that we were doing this. As Herbie the dentist would say, “Let’s be independent together!!”

After turning into the woods Jaye and I were passing back and forth a few times. I eventually was able to get out in front and stay there. I had trouble throughout the entire race with passing other teams. My team just would not pass as they are trained to do because of all the girls in heat. I thank all the mushers who helped whenever we passed. Every 2-3 hours I stop to snack the team and pass out some love. At my first snack break, I realized that I had calmed down and we were really doing this!!

The day was heating up but, Lotus and Mugs looked so good together; mother-daughter pair. I was so proud… Too early to cry though…And are we going slow? Yeah, the conditions were soft and the temperature too high… But nothing I can do but keep plugging away. As the day got later I was looking forward to running in the dark and in cooler temps. I stop to snack and to put my headlamp on…I figured that I was not even ½ way to the checkpoint and already 6 hours in…Oh my…but keep running…

Is that a team ahead? I’m catching up with this team and the dogs really like the chase. The team ahead keeps stopping, but I don’t know who it is and what the trouble is…Along the race course there are many sections where you can see the trail for miles and miles, up these incredible hills, so the dogs can see the other team and keep chasing. I catch up to the team ahead and they stop so I try to call my team to pass. It’s Kim Darst and also another team that I did not notice. Kim tells me that it is Christine Richardson and she is having trouble with a dog she has in the sled bag. I decided not to pass them at this time since they both have faster teams (…but I did just catch them…) so I drop back into line and follow for a while. Christine had to stop again and I can tell that she is very frustrated and upset, but we are off again…stop…run…stop…Ok, I can’t keep following and stopping, the dogs don’t like this very much, it’s not the way we train or normally run…Stop again…I park my team and go to see if I can help Christine…The dog she had in the bag did not want to be there or stay there…Her sled bag was ripped apart, she was not having fun and could not keep the dog in the bag securely…I suggested a double neckline approach to secure the dog…Two necklines wrapped around the collar and then to opposite sides of the sled…It seems to work and Christine is grateful…And we are off again…Stop…I need to pass and with a little help we get by…I really enjoy running by myself, but like that I have some good friends on the trail.

Now where is that darn checkpoint? It’s about 9pm and I was ‘late’ according to my calculations. We projected that this run could take me 9 ½ hours…which at first seemed to be a conservative plan, but in reality this was going to take a lot longer…

I hope Mike and his team are doing ok…Are they going this slow too? I can only wait to find out some of the answers… Finally I see the checkpoint and I am relieved and excited…It was a strange feeling to be on this side of the race and know that people are at the checkpoint anxiously awaiting my arrival… I have been the handler for our team the last 4 years and know how it feels to wait…and wait…and wait… Now I get to experience this from the driver’s seat… I like being on the runners more than handling, that is for sure, and I realize this right before getting into Portage… I have witnessed many times when a musher arrives at the checkpoint, the smile the musher has on their face when the checkers say, “Welcome to Portage!” And I was no different. I know that I had only just finished the first leg of the race, and had 180 more miles to go, but the greeting into Portage felt like the finish line…

After parking the team, I start my routine…I have this down and go right to work… Booties off, soak food, wrist wraps on, feed the dogs, repack the sled, straw to dogs, rub dogs again…Sleep well, my friends… It was nice to be able to focus on my team and not worry about talking with spectators as I took care of my team…I’m not sure I could have made complete sentences at this point anyway…Mike comes by briefly to welcome me; he understands my focus and says he’ll see me inside. The dogs look good after running for 11 hours… This run was the longest run I have ever taken with the dogs…I plan on leaving in a few hours and hope all the dogs rest well…Now it’s time to take care of myself and to see how Mike is doing. Mike came into the checkpoint about an hour earlier so he was back inside feeding and caring for himself. Bob and Rhonda were also there, even though Rhonda ran in the 60-miler earlier in the day, or was it yesterday? It was so nice to see them and also my Dad and Linda…

After changing into dry clothes and new boots, I ate some food and tried to get an hour of sleep… I couldn’t sleep, but the hour off my feet felt great… I planned on staying 5 hours or so, and an hour before leaving I went out to get the team ready. Rub the dogs, snack, wrist wraps off, booties on, love and encouragement were all part of the plan. I get assistance from the volunteers to leave the staging area, sign out of the checkpoint…

OK, I guess it’s time to get moving… Ready guys? Let’s Go! I ‘m not as nervous as I was at the start, but still feel a bit anxious leaving in the dark. If I knew what I was about to experience I would have been more anxious, but what did I know… Kobuk and Squiggle were my choice for leaders to leave Portage and I love these two so much…I hoped to leave earlier to avoid the warm temperatures later in this run, but the first leg just took so long and the dogs needed the 5 hours of rest.

It started to get hot by 8am and I knew that was going to be trouble…I switched Lotus for Kobuk and then Molly for Squiggle. Two young leaders but no worries…yet! Lotus started to get tired so I made the choice to put Moon up…Moon is one of my favorite little ‘peanuts’ and felt proud to have her lead since I worked hard in training to make her a leader. She is still learning commands, but her drive is incredible…and fast… OK, Molly, what’s up? Tired? Hot? OK, time to stop and snack. All the dogs ate well and when I called them up to go, they did, but reluctantly…HOT…I needed to take my parka off, which concerned me since if I was this hot, how are the dogs doing?

Larry Murphy and I spent a good portion of the first ½ of this leg together. Larry was really great to run with and helpful with passing. We stayed together, passing back and forth and when he crossed an area on the trail that had open holes, which could hurt a dog, he stopped and warned me. I really appreciate that he took the time to care about my team… Thanks, Larry!

Isis started to look strange, was she hurt or just hot? Stop the team…Are you OK, Isis? Let’s take a break…We stop and rest for about ½ hour. I switch up leaders and put Mugs in for Lotus. I usually don’t switch leaders on a run, but I didn’t want to stress the yearlings too much. Whenever I noticed them not having fun I would make a change. This is less than ideal for the momentum, but things were starting to fall apart on me…Oh no, Isis is not running well…OK, I guess she’s done and I put her in the sled bag. Boy is she happy and goes right to sleep… Sorry guys for the extra weight… Mugs is not happy, Reba is trying to jump off the trail, Kobuk and Squiggle are hot, Eliza is looking over her shoulder…Time to take Mugs out of lead and Moon takes her place… Yeah, now I have Moon and Lotus together in lead, but only for a few miles, then Lotus decides she’s had enough of leading…Kobuk, do you want to go? OK! Moon and Kobuk make a great leading pair, but the size difference looks funny. Moon at 32 pounds can almost stand underneath Kobuk at nearly 60 pounds. Oh no! Moon is limping so I put Molly up front. OK guys let’s go…Ahh, OK guys let’s go… MOLLY LET’S GO!! Boy she wasn’t sure if she wanted to, but she did very reluctantly. My team is starting to fall apart and Larry’s team pulls away. I feel that sense of dread that my team is getting tired, hot and losing their spirit…I hope they still trust me… Moon is limping badly so I check on Isis to see if she’s ready to run…”Isis, sweetie, wake up…Do you want to run again?” YES, great… Moon takes her place in the sled bag. She is happy that I listened to her needs, smiles at me, and falls asleep before I pull the snow hook…She stayed in the sled the rest of the leg. The team would have gladly stopped and napped for hours if I let them, but I was anxious to make it to the checkpoint. “Ahh, Cassin what are you doing? Are you trying to sit down?” Oh no! Let’s go. “Reba, please stay on the trail.” “Kobuk, are you too hot?” I put Squiggle in for Kobuk and when I asked them to go, the entire team looked over their shoulders and questioned my sanity. Yeah guys, we ARE going! Please. We are moving very slowly, but moving. How many more miles to that checkpoint?

Finally we get to Rocky Brook and I feel that we are done and will be scratching from the race. Dogs very hot and tired…Moon came into the checkpoint in the sled bag…Thinking of scratching…Very sad moment…
Mike was still at Rocky Brook…I’m surprised… He was supposed to be gone by now…His team is moving slower than planned and he adopted my original race schedule…I needed to come up with a new plan and hopefully that plan included finishing this race…I want to cry and do! Tired, hot, upset and hungry…

Checkpoint routine just like Portage: booties off, soak food, wrist wraps on, feed the dogs, repack the sled, straw to dogs, rub dogs again…Sleep well, my friends…Hey Kobuk, what are you doing to Mugs? Oops, Mugs is in standing heat and I’m not interested in breeding dogs right now, maybe later…Sorry Kobuk, not today…The dogs eat well and fall asleep quickly… Is that right? 40+ degrees and sunny! The dogs enjoy the sun to sleep in, but not to run in…
Mike and I had a moment to talk about me scratching. If that is what needs to be done, I was willing to make that decision even though we worked so hard to get here. If the team did not want to go after resting them, I would scratch… I find my bed and set up what I will need for the next leg from Rocky Brook to Maibec. Eat and eat some more…then sleep… Kim and I share a room and we quickly fall asleep. What? Oh, Mike is here to say goodbye and give me encouragement to continue on if we can, but supportive if we can’t… Kim and I talk briefly about how Mike cares about me and the dogs. I feel happy to have him here in the race with me… More sleep…

OK, time to check on the dogs and see if we can go on… Tails wagging!!! Yeah! We are going to do this and it’s getting dark and colder. Dogs look great and happy. Do they still trust me and know that I am sane? Before leaving I need to finalize my decision if Moon is coming with us. I take her off the gang line and leash walk her to see her move. Nope, she needs to stay. I feel very sad, but know it is the right decision to leave her behind. I need someone to sign her out of the race and as I sign the paperwork I burst into tears. I could not control myself and I cry hard… Moon…my little Moonie Goonie…Boy, I didn’t see that coming… The checkpoint volunteers were great and help me with dropping Moon. I know she is being left in good hands, but I am very sad… I dropped Moon for sore wrists and she quickly recovers in a few days. She was sad to go too…we would meet up again during the race…

I left the checkpoint around 6pm, just as it was getting dark with light snow, but clearing…Squiggle and Kobuk were again in lead out of the checkpoint. There was a sharp right hand turn a few hundred yards from the checkpoint turning off a plowed road…Many mushers were concerned about making this turn, but I felt comfortable that Kobuk and Squiggle would take the turn when asked. No problems with the turn and we are off and running into the night. Wow, just a few hours ago I was seriously considering scratching…Now I feel on top of the world… It was dark and getting colder and the moon rise was quite breathtaking. Full moon rising orange (this one’s for Moonie).

Lev Shvarts left about 10 minutes before me and we quickly caught him. We ran together for a while. My team was not passing well and not keeping ahead well, so I decided to hold my team back and enjoy the run in solitude. Great decision and one of the best runs I had… I also knew that I had a dog team again… Kobuk and Squiggle were moved back into the team and Mugs and Lotus led us the rest of the leg. I like to run at night with my headlamp off, and I almost missed a turn when the trail ran alongside a plowed road. We were on the plowed road and luckily I noticed the markers just in time… If I had missed this turn I would have had a tough time stopping and turning the team around. Mugs and Lotus got a bit confused and did a U-turn…No, guys, we are not going back…

Mike has shared many stories about “Hotel Maibec” and I was really looking forward to seeing it for myself. After parking the team I went right to work… Booties off, soak food, wrist wraps on, feed the dogs, repack the sled, straw to dogs, rub dogs again…Sleep well, my friends…I also needed to change my runner plastic since it was peeling off…
Mike was still at Maibec which was a surprise. His team looked good and they were excited to go. I see that there are fellow experienced mushers having a hard time getting out of Maibec… Their teams just didn’t want to go. Sad to see a good dog team quit on their musher. I hope that doesn’t happen to me.

Mike sees an opportunity to get ahead of a few mushers, so he asks me to get some help so he can checkout of Maibec. Boy, his team looked good, happy and ready to go, but he decides to leave Wilson here due to a sore shoulder. His whole team was on their feet and eager to go. Right before pulling the hook, some yelled ‘LOOSE DOG!’ This is not good… Mike knows that if he pulled out right now there was a chance the loose dog would follow the team, so he waited to pull his snow hook. Hey! Is that Wilson? The dog Mike just dropped? Yup! There’s Wilson running around…Mike easily calls him over and returns him to the volunteers, who are surprised since they never saw Wilson escape…I guess Wilson didn’t want to stay at Hotel Maibec…sorry boy, but you must stay.

With my team sleeping and Mike on his way to Allagash, it’s time to take care of myself… I go inside a bit dazed and a very nice volunteer (Tawnia) takes my parka, bibs, and boots and leaves with them… I didn’t question where they were going or how I would get them back, and at that point I didn’t really care…I need food and maybe some sleep. Before I lie down I make sure that I set a wake-up call for 4am. I prepare my next outfit before falling asleep so when I wake from my nap I don’t have to think…Not sure I could…Jaye and I share a room and I never heard her come in and hope I was quiet enough when I left…At 4am, Tawnia comes to wake me up and asks if I want to sleep another ½ hour? Of course I do, but resist the urge…Time to get up and get dressed…There is my parka, bibs and boots…Warm and dry…

Time to check dogs and get back on the trail…Mike suggested that I shorten my break at Maibec to avoid the heat of the day, but I knew the dogs needed all the rest I could give them. I want to finish this race… Mike had also prepared me for what I could expect on each leg of the race. I knew that from Maibec to Allagash was going to be hard…Many rolling hills then about 20 miles into Allagash there were some serious hills…It’s a bit frightening to look for miles and miles and see hill after hill after hill knowing that we are going up each and everyone of them in the heat of the day. I hope the dogs trust me…

At 5am we leave Maibec with trusted Squiggle and Kobuk in lead. The team leaves a bit slow but they want to go! This leg did give me a bit of trouble and took about 9 ½ hours to complete. I enjoyed being able to run this leg with just me and the dogs…This race is between me, the dogs, the race course, and maybe the clock a bit—not any other team…I’m not racing…I want to finish with a happy and healthy dog team…

Hey, what’s that? Dog team, coming AT us…oh, sad feeling when I see a musher going back to the checkpoint… Ward Wallin had decided to go back and scratch at Maibec…We exchange a few words and he helps me get past him. I got concerned at this point that my team would try to follow his back to the checkpoint. The team thought about it for a split second but I helped to change their minds… Thank goodness!
I stop frequently to rest in shady spots and to give snacks. It’s hot and the dogs are not happy with the heat. Running during the heat of the day may not be good right now! I change leaders frequently and hope the team doesn’t quit on me. Let’s take another break, guys…Mike told me the second ½ was harder than the first ½ …Oh, boy! The first part was hard…What is harder going to look like?

The dogs start to pick up speed and I realize that we are approaching a safety checkpoint…”No…NO…NO… this is not a real checkpoint guys and we are NOT stopping!!” Yeah, right! They question my sanity and try to stop… “OK GUYS… LET’S GO!” But they really don’t want to, and try to turn back into the safety checkpoint. I’m off my sled quickly and let them know that we are going up that long hill that we can all see for miles and miles, up and up and up…Mugs and Lotus see a side trail that loops back to the safety checkpoint and before I know it ½ the team is down this very soft and deep trail…Off the sled again…As I step off the side of the trail to move the team back to where I want them…I sink up to my waist in snow… Boy am I tired, can I just stay here? NO!! The dogs would really like to stop and take a nap, but that’s not my plan, so let’s go… Well it took about 30 minutes and about 10 trips up the team to finally get them moving. Now they really think I’m crazy and you know, I’m thinking the same thing. And we still haven’t gotten to the ‘big hills.’

I stop to snack the dogs and they are all eating well and when it’s time to go, they slowly get up and start running. I am still confident that they can do this and show them much love at the breaks. Eliza is starting to limp and I think she probably got hurt when the team took the side trail. I hope she’s going to be ok… Eliza is favoring her one side and starting to look over her shoulder…Time to put her in the bag… This should slow us down some…or maybe a lot…The rest of the team is not happy with the extra weight and proceed to walk up all the hills…Not only are they walking up all the hills, so am I!

HILLS…HILLS…and more HILLS… Steep ones, long ones, endless ones…
I walked up every single hill for the last 10 miles…Ahhh…Mike warned me about an evil hill about 1 mile out of Allagash checkpoint and I’m not looking forward to this particular hill. Up, up and up we go…Where is that 1 Mile marker? Is there really a bigger hill than this one? Oh boy, there’s the 1 Mile to go marker… And we are going DOWN a hill…I guess the marker was after the BIG hill and not before…I’m glad…ok ecstatic… Welcome to Allagash! After parking, I’m right into the checkpoint routine… Booties off, soak food, wrist wraps on, feed the dogs, repack the sled, straw to dogs, rub dogs again…Sleep well, my friends… Over the years of handling for Mike I have developed many friends who work the checkpoints…There were many familiar faces to welcome me and the team…and Dad!

I wanted to give him the biggest hug, but he stopped me…He was violently ill and didn’t want me to get whatever he had…What dedication to be so sick and still stand out in the cold in the middle of the night waiting for your daughter…Thanks, Dad and Linda, it really means a lot to me…Love ya… I really wanted that hug, so Linda supplied me with a good one…

Rhonda was there as well and she was wonderful…When I questioned what I should do and when I should leave, she listened but didn’t try to sway my decision in any way. She also had Moonie and Wilson in her dog truck and I nearly cried when I went to visit…Moonie… Willie… OK…I’m a sap and I love my dogs dearly…And I’m really tired…
I decided that I was not going to sleep at Allagash since I only expected to stay the 5 hour mandatory rest. I ate some food, drank a bunch of fluids and then went to change into dry clothes and new boots…Ouch…These boots hurt…a lot…My feet must have been swollen from wearing my soft mukluks and the change to stiff boots hurt. I’m glad I put them on early so my feet could get used to them…

My race was between me, my dogs, the race course, and the clock a bit…No other team on the course…If I took the 5 hour mandatory break and no longer, I was scheduled to leave Allagash 10 minutes before Lev. He wanted to race to the finish…I didn’t, but almost got caught up in the moment…The dogs could have done it, but this was not what I wanted to do…I wasn’t here to race…Rhonda was great at listening and supporting my decision. I was quite worked up…Ahhh… I decided that I would stay a few hours longer and take any racing out of the picture. I feel great…I’m so glad I made that decision and Rhonda notices my feelings…OK let’s have some fun, because we are going to finish this race…I can’t believe it…

I need to drop Eliza out of the race. Her shoulder was sore and her race ended 45 miles short of the finish. She would be riding back to Fort Kent with Rhonda…I cried again…
With only 10 dogs running I also needed to shorten my gang line. Now how do I make that work? Kobuk can’t be next to any girl in season, and I don’t want to disrupt sleeping dogs…Huh? No real options on moving dogs…So I unclipped the front four dogs from the line and removed a section of the gang line. They were sleeping so I figured they weren’t leaving without me…I temporally reconnected the section with necklines and would remove it right before leaving the checkpoint.

The dogs are up on their feet, tails wagging and happy…I’m feeling pretty good myself…OK…Packed, booties on, signing out and heading for home with Kobuk and Squiggle leading…
Moon, is that you? I can hear her in Rhonda’s truck…She’s howling away…She wants to say goodbye and good luck to her teammates…Right before pulling my snow hook my entire team responded with a group howl…It was so beautiful and moving…
We left at 11pm into the dark, cold and windy night…Just me and 10 of my best friends…Moon and Eliza were missed…

In this race you can never feel that you’re done until you see the finish line. I feel great leaving Allagash for home, but know that the last 45 miles are not going to be easy. I have heard about the long hills, some extremely steep but short hills and deep snow drifts in the potato fields. But it is finally cold and windy…The dogs love the cold and I don’t mind it either. No major problems on the run over to Fort Kent. When we hit the potato fields there was no trail and very deep drifts…Molly and Lotus hit the first snow drift and stopped…It’s OK, let’s go…Nope… I brought Squiggle on this trip for her experience and knowledge of this race course. She has been one of Mike’s main leaders the last 4 years in this race and now was the time I really needed her. She knew where she was and what needed to be done. As I put her up in lead with Molly I whispered in her ear that we were going HOME (home is a special word and is used only at the end of the race). I shed a tear when Squig smiled and did this little 4-legged dance with excitement! Oh my! We are going to do this...! I love you, Squiggle.


Sue into Allagash

Don't get in Sue's way (just kidding)

At the finish line!

The fields were harder than I expected and the temperature and wind were fierce. One field after another… Is there no end? I would like to get back into the woods…I cross a few roads and volunteers are there waiting for us and cheering us on… It’s starting to hit me…WE DID IT…I start to cry and then cry harder…I’m so proud…I’m so tired…I’m so cold…It’s too cold to cry…The tears are freezing to my face…
Get a hold of yourself, Rookie…
What? What is that? A wall? Nearly vertical but short…This leads to the ski slope and then the finish line…This hill is crazy, but it’s not going to stop us now!
There it is! The finish line…And there’s Mike!

WE DID IT!! Tsuga Siberians’ youngest team…Finisher of the 2007 Can-Am 250!!

Mike had me off my feet in his arms. If you were there, you would have cried too… I have never worked so hard at anything in my life and feel incredible…I love and thank my dogs…

This would not have been possible without Mike’s perpetual hard work and dedication. There were many weeks throughout the winter that he spent up at camp training not only his team, but mine too…It wasn’t always easy, but not all goals are…

Thank you, Mike… I love you!

A very special thanks to Squiggle, Kobuk, Lotus, Mugs, Molly, Trip, Reba, Cassin, Ambler, Eliza and Moon. You are the best… Completing this race would not have been possible without Squiggle, Kobuk and Mug’s experience… Lotus receives the best yearling award and she also led the most miles during the race…Tightest tug award goes to Ambler!

My race is done but the feelings will last forever…My dogs love me…My husband loves me…And I loved this experience…Dog mushing is great!!!

Thanks to all the people who believe in Team Tsuga.
 



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