Elim to White Mountain

Weather Forecast:

Updated: 10:20 PM AKDT on March 16, 2010
Clear     16 °F
Windchill:     6 °F
Humidity:     52%
Dew Point:     1 °F
Wind:     7 mph from the North
Wind Gust:     0.0 mph
Pressure:     30.30 in (Rising)
Visibility:     10.0 miles

Elim to Golovin (Not an official checkpoint)

by Donald Bowers, Jr.

Quick Overview

This is one of the more interesting legs on the race, with quite a variety of trail and terrain in a very short distance. Moreover, there is always a possibility of two extremely different routes for the first ten miles. The race follows the main snowmachine “highway” from Elim to Golovin and it is usually well marked and packed.

The trail usually heads back out on the sea ice from Elim and runs a mile or two offshore to a cabin at Walla Walla, on the coast eight miles south of Elim. In some years, when there is open water just off shore, the traill will stay overland on the Old Elim Mail Trail.

At Walla Walla, the trail rurns inland and climbs over the Kwiktalik Mountains with a series of long, moderately hard grades. The final summit is 1,000 feet at Little McKinley, about eight miles past Walla Walla and ten miles from Golovin. This is considered the hardest climb on the last half of the race.

The trail then makes a fast descent to Golovin Bay, running northwest along the bay ice for the last five miles to Golovin.

Golovin to White Mountain

by Donald Bowers, Jr.

Quick Overview

This is normally a yawner (unless the wind is blowing or it’s snowing). The trail follows the main snowmachine route, running straight as an arrow for ten miles across Golovnin Lagoon, then winding gently around (with some gentle ups and downs) to cross the delta of the Fish River. The last few miles are on the river. There is sometimes overflow on the lagoon or river. Plan on two hours for the trip, perhaps three if the wind is blowing.

Elim to Golovin Trail

Lance Mackey Passes Golovin in 2009

White Mountain

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