First, I'd like to wish you a very happy solstice and delightful holiday season. The majority of belief systems around the world celebrate holidays this time of year, so we all have good reasons to get together and spend quality time with friends of all persuasions.
Locally, the sun will peak over the horizon at 10:56 this morning and will set at 2:39, giving us a length of day of 3 hours, 43 minutes. I plan on spending the bulk of that daylight out on the trail with some dogs. I hope your plans for the day include something you find at least equally enjoyable.
The weather has been quite warm the past few days, even warm enough to be thawy and drippy a couple of days ago. We've gotten a little bit of snow while I was away - not much - but I've received reports that the Swamp Trail I use so frequently is in much better shape than before, so I' hope to incorporate that into some of our training runs. Within a few days I should be able to start running the dogs further and further afield.
Things at work were pretty routine for the most part. Certainly there wasn't anything happened that I can write about in a public forum. The oil is still flowing and everyone is still healthy.
Locally, there have been a couple of events worthy of comment. Rusty Hagan's wife, Gidget, operates Dog Daze Grooming Salon in Fairbanks. According to an article in yesterday's edition of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner the business suffered a fire in the laundry room last Friday morning. My friend Bobbi Snow was the hero of the day, as she safely evacuated all 8 dogs that were in the business at the time, and called the fire department early enough to limit damage to the laundry room, with a bit of smoke damage elsewhere.
Also locally, officials with the Fairbanks North Star Borough Division of Animal Control have proposed a change in the fee structure for adopting dogs and cats. The The change would raise the standard adoption fees for all dogs from $90 to $130 and from $55 to $90 for cats, but that increase would also cover the cost of a spay or neuter — if needed — along with vaccines and a tracking tag. Currently the cost of sterilizing the animal is added to the base fee, which makes for a relatively inconsistent list of charges, and sometimes requires potential adopters to wait several days or longer to actually receive their new pet. The News-Miner article I linked above provides some additional information, and some interesting commentary below the article.
Wanna see something really cute? Check out the "puppy updates" on Linda Newmans "To Points Unknown" blog. Now, look at the pictures of the female called Grand Marais. Grand Marais will be coming to the Stardancer Kennel in late January, with some help from mutual friends. I'll post more details when it seems appropriate to do so. Here's a picture of GM at four weeks of age, from Linda's Blog.
|Grand Marais at 4 weeks of age - 6 lb, 1 oz.|
Meanwhile, if you happen to be in Minnesota and want to check out this crazy game of dog mushing, I highly recommend Points Unknown as a great starting place. They offer a variety of mushing and training adventures, including women's winter adventures that seem to be quite popular.
Speaking of the future, I need to stop thinking about puppies and start thinking about feeding the team their breakfast, feeding the primate who rides the sled, getting a couple of sleds ready for the day and generally doing a bunch of little projects so I can get out on the trail. I've no doubt I'll be posting updates again in the near future.