June 26, 2007


After our annual local race earlier in the month we had been training hard for our next race - the Origin. The rig races consisted of a 7km run on Saturday morning, a 4.5km run Saturday night and another 7km run Sunday morning. Normally when we train the dogs have a couple of days rest in between but because the Origin had three heats within a 24 hour period we had been training Friday, Saturday and Sundays as well as one night during the week.

The morning of Friday 22 June was supposed to be the day we headed off to Naseby for the Origin (Sled Dog Racing). It's winter here and the weather had been terrible. Little old Invercargill (where we live) even had a mini tornado which blew some roofs off houses & knocked a fence down. Reports were that a lot of the roads were closed because of snow & ice so we decided to wait until early Saturday morning to head away. We didn't expect to get there but thought we would give it a go, we'd go as far as the roads allowed us and if we didn't make it we'd find some snow and take the dogs out for a run.

Saturday morning came & there had been several roads closed overnight. We had three options of which roads we would use to get to Naseby. There were two four wheel drive vehicles with a dog trailer on each in convoy (fourteen dogs in total, thirteen Sibes and a black Lab). Friends of ours (Horana Kennels) who live in Roxburgh had left on Friday afternoon and only got as far as Clyde before they were told they couldn't go any further towing their dog trailer. They also could not get back home as the road was closed. We decided going via Roxburgh was not a good idea and that we would head on up State Highway 1 to Mosgiel. We didn't expect to get past Gore but managed to (we later found out the road was closed just after we went through) and eventually got to Balclutha driving at a maximum of 60kmph (about 37mph) all the way. We headed out of the Balclutha township to find the road ahead of us closed. We turned around to find the road behind us closed. There was only one thing to do - off to the local diner for some food and refreshments (doggies got treats in the trailer). We were told that the road to Middlemarch was closed as well as the road to Dunedin, they were our only two routes to get to Naseby. After a short time we heard that the road south was open again so decided we would head back home & find some snow on the way.

We turned off the main road & drove for a few minutes until we found a nice long side road that hadn't been used with lots of snow. We got the dogs, sled & ganglines out & went for a run. I went as cargo on the sled for the first run with a seven dog team and two mushers (thought it might have been quite a fast run and wanted to slow the team down a bit). It was lots of fun and meant I could take my camera and get some 'butt' shots of the dogs running for you all to see:)

There were two other runs, four and three dog teams and plenty of fun was had by all. Some of the dogs had never seen the snow so were very excited and bouncing around in all the new white fluffy stuff.

Hope you enjoy the photos:)

Aleeya (Team Husky - Prince and Summer's Mom)


MaPaw said...

Snow! I am so jealous. I will have to look at these pictures to keep cool until the weather gets cooler here.

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