re-sized Iditarod_Trail_Seward_500

Extreme racing with dogs – The Iditarod

A different kind of marathon we suggest – this one of some 1,150 miles to be completed in little over two weeks, in the United States’ most north western state, Alaska – yet another example of the extreme and extraordinary things that people will do – why we find ourselves asking. But first a little more about the race.

From Anchorage, in south central Alaska, to Nome on the western Bering Sea coast, each team of 12 to 16 dogs and their ‘musher’ cover over 1,150 miles. It has been called the “Last Great Race on Earth” and it has won worldwide acclaim and interest.

The Iditarod Trail, now a National Historic Trail, had its beginnings as a mail and supply route from the coastal towns of Seward and Knik to the interior mining camps at Flat, Ophir, Ruby and beyond to the west coast communities of Unalakleet, Elim, Golovin, White Mountain and Nome. Mail and supplies went in. Gold came out. All via dog sled. Heroes were made, legends were born.

The 2009 race will start on March 7th in downtown Anchorage and depending on your speed over the course will finish 10 to 17 days later and will conclude with the awards banquet on March 22nd in Nome.

2009 Race Route

Checkpoints

Distance between Checkpoints

Distance from Anchorage

Distance to Nome

Total Distance

1131

Anchorage to Campbell Airstrip

20

20

1131

Campbel Airstrip to Willow

29

49

1082

Willow to Yentna Station

52

115

1016

Yentna Station to Skwentna

34

149

982

Skwentna to Finger Lake

45

194

937

Finger Lake to Rainy Pass

30

224

907

Rainy Pass to Rohn

48

272

859

Rohn to Nikolai

75

347

784

Nikolai to McGrath

54

401

730

McGrath to Takotna

18

419

712

Takotna to Ophir

25

444

687

Ophir to Iditarod

90

534

597

Iditarod to Shageluk

65

599

532

Shageluk to Anvik

25

624

507

Anvik to Grayling

18

642

489

Grayling to Eagle Island

60

702

429

Eagle Island to Kaltag

70

772

359

Kaltag to Unalakleet

90

862

269

Unalakleet to Shaktoolik

40

902

229

Shaktoolik to Koyuk

58

960

171

Koyuk to Elim

48

1008

123

Elim to Golovin

28

1036

95

Golovin to White Mountain

18

1054

77

White Mountain to Safety

55

1109

22

Safety to Nome

22

1131

0

For further information on rules and how you can qualify go to the Itarod home website www.itarod.com
We include for your interest a video from DiscoveryNetworks which gives you a taste of ‘The Greatest Race on Earth’.

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