Running Dogs from the Gunflint Trail

Moderator: satchmoa

Running Dogs from the Gunflint Trail

Postby sirius » Sat Feb 03, 2007 10:11 pm

I ran the dogs at 7 P.M. Tuesday night just South of the vegetable lakes. We did 65 miles with some excitement when a very large moose ran across the trail right over the lead dogs. They were all surprised and nobody got hurt. The dogs kept going just as if it was another red squirrel but it seemed different to me. I was watching the moose head kind of turn and lower as the dogs were just under it's left with the moose broadside to me. It was a nice night with a high full moon. I snubbed the dog sled to a tree, got the booties off, gave them a snack, and started the alcohol cooker. I put dog coats and wrist wraps on all 12 and then pulled the tugs. I put the hot water, after getting out my meal, in with meat in a cooler and ate scrambled eggs and sausage out of a ziplock. At 7:30 A.M. we launched for another 35 mile run. They were pretty slow getting started for this as we did the same runs from the same spot all exactly the same just one week before with a 32 and a 50 mile run in-between. Except this time we came around a corner and surprised two wolves just about 60 feet from us that quickly quietly disappeared. A bit down the trail I glimpsed another wolf disappearing ahead of us along the trail.
Now we will take a few days off and then some short runs until the UP200 Sled Dog Race. Good timing because the high temperature today at 2 P.M. here is minus 19 F. I think it is going to get cold tonight. I
will do all I can and the dogs can but will be happy if they are happy to go
half way in the races or just to participate with all the dogs with me. I learned a lot while enjoying 1500+ miles this season where I live on the edge of the BWCAW. Although I said it a year ago I do believe this will be the last race season participation for some as a bunch of them are nine now and two of them will be twelve in June. Those two are great brothers and the last two puppies I have from those I got from Susan Butcher. I am signed up for the Beargrease Marathon and then it will be March and hopefully April runs into the BWCAW. I have my remote border-crossing permit renewed. I like to run the dogs into Sag to camp on Knife Lake, Gaskin Lake, Seagull to Rog Lake, Clearwater to Pine Lake, and join the snowmobiles into the Fowls for border lakes walleye until April 15th. Those two oldest brothers are still my best lead dogs for that. The are perfect on open untracked lakes. A lot of dogs will do S turns all across an untracked lake. In the warm Spring weather I can steer by command from one open hole to another and do not have to drill myself through two plus feet of ice if I go on a Monday or Tuesday. I drop a snowhook in an ice hole. I usually add a tip-up, with bells on it, to that hole and jig in another in front of the lead dogs.
Neil Rasmussen
sirius
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Feb 03, 2007 6:44 pm
Location: Grand Marais, MN

Invitations sent: 0
Referrals: 0

Running Dogs from the Gunflint Trail

Postby bwca » Sun Feb 04, 2007 1:24 am

That's a great story. Thanks for sharing. Best of luck in the races. When you are out on an overnight Boundary Waters trip, what do you do to keep the dogs warm at night? Or do you not do overnights?
User avatar
bwca
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1554
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 7:00 pm
Location: Twin Cities

Invitations sent: 0
Referrals: 4

Running Dogs in the BWCAW

Postby sirius » Sun Feb 04, 2007 9:16 am

The nice thing about living on the edge of the BWCAW is that I can more easily choose when and where to go. Over the past 25 years I have tended to enter when the weather forecast was not minus 35 F as it is now. By the way here is the best site for that:

http://www.met.utah.edu/cgi-bin/roman/m ... time=LOCAL

This morning the dogs are all in their individual insulated and caulked dog houses curled in half a bale of fluffy straw as it is cold even for a double coated northern Alaskan Husky. They will gladly be out for their frozen poultry fat rolled in crushed kibble followed by hot Eureka Race Mix {emulsified meat and liver} mixed with hot water and Red Paw kibble.

I do a lot of overnights with the dogs in the BWCAW. I do nothing to keep them warm at night. Once I was in across Seagull, Rog, Alpine and the ice was good and nice temperatures. I had been catching trophy Brook Trout on Rog until an otter stuck it's head up my hole in front of my face, looked me in the eye, and right back down. I tried jigging in other holes but there were no more trout to be caught.
I was camping with a tarp and a fire with no tent in the warm weather. It started raining hard that night. I started for home at first light. Before we got back to the Seagull landing the dogsled was making waves of water on top of the ice. The sled dogs don't mind any of this. They always love to go with me anywhere and anytime. But I tend to go when the weather is nice, the ice is nice, the stars will be bright, sun block required. March and April are prime time. I have a tent with a folding woodstove that travels nice in the dogsled but have not used it in a long time. But I always have an ice auger and the makings for fish.
Neil Rasmussen
sirius
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Feb 03, 2007 6:44 pm
Location: Grand Marais, MN

Invitations sent: 0
Referrals: 0


Return to Dog Sledding & Skijoring

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron