Last week, we headed out to the White Mountains for a camping trip. Due to the low snow levels, we still can’t run larger teams with a sled; however, we can comfortably run 8-9 dogs per team. Kalyn and I recruited Cartel’s sponsor, Tracy, to come join us on our camp out. Tracy and her husband Bryan have a small kennel comprised of a few Ryno Kennel retirees- Brant, Chagga, and Teflon. And luckily for us, Tracy loves Type II fun, so she was a great addition to the training series.
While the two-year-olds ran the Two Rivers 100 last year, our camp out was only their second run/rest series. The experienced adults know the drill and immediately lay down once the straw hits the snow. They eat their meals and seem to intuitively know our training plan, meaning they’re not stressed by camping multiple times. For the youngsters, it’s a new experience. Most of the time in training, we go for a run and then they sleep at home in their own beds after a big meal. On a race schedule, they need to learn to sleep in new places, eat at all hours, and trust in the pattern of run/rest/run. Needless to say, the two-year-olds rocked it. Elmer and Cooke led the entire camping trip (except when we had a short stretch of going off the trail, and putting in a turnaround- that was reserved for Gee/Haw leader extraordinaire, Lefty). Wingman and Boone led for Kalyn, and Cartel and Katy led for Tracie. Everyone ate well, had a fantastic attitude, and worked hard. I wish I had more photos and videos from the trip, but it was pretty much dark the entire time!
And not only did the dogs eat well, but we did too! Saeward put together a delicious to-go box of human treats. As many of my friends and family know, I’m pretty terrible about packing food for myself. In fact, on my first Yukon Quest, I was about to leave the truck at the starting line when my mom asked if I’d packed any food for the first 100 miles to the checkpoint of Braeburn. Oops… Luckily, she was able to scrape together some granola bars and snacks for my first leg. While my own food should be more of a priority, it just never is. Kalyn has a similar mentality, so knowing that we’d be eating gas station food during our camp out, Saeward graciously made us a tasty to-go box! I haven’t introduced her yet on the blog, but we have another Ryno Team Member living at the kennel. Saeward, Kalyn’s partner, isn’t officially handling (she works from home as a writer), but when she has a free moment, she volunteers her time to help out. From walking puppies to helping with chores to running a team to helping to rehab athletes, Saeward has been a huge help! Thank you Saeward!
As the winter solstice approaches, the sun hasn’t been rising too far about the horizon. This photo was from yesterday at 2:15 PM.
On the home front, we’ve been chipping away at building projects. Our cabinets are scheduled to arrive on December 31st. We recently picked up a propane fridge, propane oven, and couches! Only trouble is that one of the couches is an electric recliner. I guess we’ll have to fire up the generator to recline the couch! Ha! Ok, we won’t do that. Eventually we plan to have a battery bank and solar/generator power, so I guess we’ll wait to recline the couch until that system is set up.