31 March 2008
27 March 2008
Until the weekend I find myself, surprisingly at a National Geographic event on the environment, selling books. This is a surprising turn of events and I hope to take advantage of it as there are some very respected names here and a few of people I know. Scientists as well as activists, attempting to present the pitfalls of global climate change and potential solutions to insurance agents and business persons, the people who seem to just be catching on that this may be an issue that will directly affect them. Luckily the talks are piped into the book-room and I hope to get the opportunity to circulate during the breaks. I must continually remind myself not to buy any of the delicious books on science & the environment that arrayed in front of me. So tempting!
25 March 2008
21 March 2008
20 March 2008
16 March 2008
Oh, and while I was gone the Iditarod came to an end with Lance Mackey winning. It was a great race in that you never knew until the very end who was going to win.
01 March 2008
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.
In 1925, part of the Iditarod Trail became a life saving highway for epidemic-stricken Nome. Diphtheria threatened and serum had to be brought in; again by intrepid dog mushers and their faithful hard-driving dogs. The Iditarod is a commemoration of those yesterdays, a not-so-distant past that Alaskans honor and are proud of.
This race is a bit different then then the Yukon Quest in that there are more checkpoints and it goes through more communities, i.e. mushers don't have to rely so much on wilderness camping. This year there is a record 96 teams in the race. For both the Yukon Quest & the Iditarod mushers must first qualify for the race through other shorter races. One year there was no snow in Anchorage so they had to hold the start in Fairbanks - two dear friends of mine (who took the pictures on this page) from Europe were particularly fascinated by the range of clothing you could see even at 40 below zero; everything from shorts & t-shirt, complete homemade fur get-ups (including a skunk hat!), carhardts and bunny boots, and military fatigues for the folks from the base.