Thursday, February 7, 2019

Yukon Quest - Day 4

Coming off their 36 hour layover in Dawson City, the frontrunners in the Yukon Quest are wasting little time in route to the Canada- Alaska border. At 5:00 AM AST Brent Sass is less than a mile from Clinton Creek, where the trail leaves the Yukon River and tracks up the Fortymile. Hans Gatt and Michelle Phillips, traveling close together, are only 5 miles behind the leader and in fourth place, Allen Moore is about 5 miles back from them.  Paige Drobny, Denis Tremblay and Matt Hall have all left Dawson City for their run to Alaska and Ryne Olson will be free to leave in less than half an hour.

Two mushers, Lisbet Norris and Jimmy Lebling seem to be struggling, still about 50 miles from the famous gold-rush town and moving at only 4 miles per hour. I would not be surprised if they were to either scratch or be withdrawn from the race when they eventually do make it to Dawson City. It's pretty apparent their teams are unable to maintain a racing pace.

Chase Tingle had an interesting wildlife encounter and a new story to add to his collection while en route to Dawson City. Apparently his team attracted the attention of a lonely gray wolf who more or less casually chased them down the trail for several miles. The story is well told in a Fairbanks New-Miner article. Reading it in Chase's own words is well worth clicking on the link.

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