Pete and the Team arrived into Shaktoolik early this morning at 4:31 and have been resting since. Weather in Shaktoolik is pretty much as it always is– Windy! Ice fog is also a factor and visibility will be poor.
Teams will rest up for the 50 mile journey to Koyuk into the wind. Apparently the trail is following the coast rather than going straight across the bay as is usually the case. A warm winter has more than likely moved the trail which will make it a bit longer as well.
Teams are coming into Shaktoolik at this hour with Travis Beals, Wade Marrs, and Richie Diehl all in to the checkpoint.
This race isn’t over at all as there are a couple of hundred miles of hard trail and about 35-40 hours left on the race clock.
At the front Mitch Seavey is watching Joar Ulsom battle Nic Petit for the top position, yet Mitch has a bunch of tricks up his sleeve that could put him forward easily. Joar pulled in front of Nic over the ice, so we will see how it goes as rest becomes a factor.
Ray and Pete have at least 9 teams vying for the top 5, and many more are headed for Shaktoolik.
It is going to be very exciting to be sure.
One thing that I found so notable was the energy of Pete and the Team into Unalakleet last night. It looked like they were at the START of a race, not 800 miles into it. It was such a beautiful sight to see.
Mushing weather for today is going to be wind from the North gusting to 25 with periods of freezing fog and possible snow showers. It’s going to be a cold one as traveling in ice fog always seems to make it FEEL colder. Hopefully the trail is well marked for those periods of ice fog.
Go Team Kaiser!