Iditarod races and festivities

The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race is the last of the great winter races and it's held every March in Anchorage Alaska. Well, at least it gets started there. There are other wonderful festivities that surround this event during Fur Rondy which is one of the largest winter festivals in the world! The whole city puts on their gloves and boots (and other heavy winter gear!) while downtown streets are closed down and race tracks are built for sleds!


City Workers building a safe track for the sled dogs

The city workers actually build up a track of 11 miles through the large city of Anchorage, but the real race restarts the next day in Willow AK. Besides the fact that it's a kind of false start all of the mushers and their teams seem to be reveling in the attention of those that line the streets and watch as they stroll by. It really is quite fascinating! The people cheer as they pass and they wave and sometimes throw their dogs boots that have come off. The smell of animal is in the air and this ritual springs to life and somehow gives hope.

 I've been to several such expositions and it's a whole lot of family fun. I might add, "very cold fun," but that IS the Alaskan way after all. They don't seem to notice much, but my feet start to tingle and then burn from standing in that packed snow and ice after a little while. I'm just not cut out for it being born and bred in the south, I guess! You can read and see my own pics HERE of the last race I watched as the mushers and dogs flew down that very hill pictured above. It's pretty exciting stuff!

This year I was warm and even running around on the first Saturday in March with my convertible top down here in the south, but the Alaskans were enjoying there own mild temperatures (it was above freezing..yay!) My husband faithfully as every year was standing on the sidelines as the festivities in the streets whirled around him. He snapped a few pictures for me so I could pretend I was there! (very sweet, baby!)


Iditarod Dog Sled Races in Anchorage, AK March 2016


 
Onlookers line the streets and wait for the next event in
downtown Anchorage


It's the Annual Reindeer Races!

 

Reindeer are corralled as they wait their turn to race!

 
Crowds walk the historic streets of down town Anchorage




Thanks for joining me as I reminisce of my winters in Alaska! It's really something that you bundle up for, but if you're prepared with the proper gear it is possible to enjoy the freezing cold weather. The beautiful scenery and warm people more than make up for it!! I'll be back in Anchorage before you know it so join me again!




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