I just got back from Alaska and the Iditerod Dog Sled Race. When I was Heli-skiing with Sean Tucker the week before he got a call from a corporate friend that had some last minute cancellations and got us an invite! We were wined and dined with great food and great friends and had a great time!
The first day we got to see the start of the race in downtown Anchorage and I bumped in to Gov. Sarah Palin! When she was campaigning in Florida she made a campaign stop at Fantasy of Flight compliments of the Republican Party. I happened to autograph a Gee Bee Book for her son Trig and gave it to one of her helpers to pass on. After she officially started the Iditerod Race by cutting the ribbon she happened to walk towards me holding a baby. I asked if it was Trig and she thanked me for the book and introduced me to her husband, who likes to fly.
Later our group got out to a giant glacier by helicopter. It’s ice flow ended at a frozen lake at about 700 feet above sea level and continued up to about 6000 feet! On the flight out, Sean and I couldn’t help but notice all the great Heli-ski opportunities! We landed on the lake at the end of the glacier and got to explore some ice caves. It was the first time I had ever been to Alaska and it was certainly the first time I ever had champagne on ice!
The next day we jumped into some airplanes on skis and flew out to a great lodge located at the third checkpoint on the 1150 mile race. The next morning the first racers began to come through to stop to feed their dogs, have them checked, rest up, and head out. By the end of the day all of the 60+ racers and come and gone and during the day I got a chance to do some snowmobiling as well as trying my hand at being a Musher with a team of eight dogs! It was great fun but I learned not to try it after the dogs had eaten!