Hello sports fans! No sport is bigger in Alaska than Dog Mushing. In fact, it’s Alaska’s official state sport. And the Iditarod is the most famous dogsled race in the world. The Iditarod celebrates a historic relay in which 20 mushers and over 100 dogs rushed a much-needed batch of Diphtheria serum to Nome 92 years ago due to an outbreak. Aviation technology was not yet advanced enough, or widely used in Alaska at that time, so sled dogs were the most reliable and fastest delivery method. This year the route is starting in Fairbanks due to poor trail conditions in Rainy Pass. True to its name, it’s impassable on sleds due to lack of snow. According to the official Alaska State Balladeer, Hobo Jim, “It’s going to be an easy year.” He’s right, because starting in Fairbanks skips the most dangerous section of the trail, the Alaska Range. We have plenty of snow in Anchorage though, which will make the ceremonial start much better than the last two years when they dredged up some kind of blackened gray snow that was so dirty it looked like mashed up Oreo cookies.
I painted this husky pup holding the new Husky IPA from Alaskan Brewing Company in honor of this epic race. Hanging out in a snowbank, this dog is keeping his beer cold outside along the trail as his bigger brothers and sisters are hammering the Iditarod trail. Seriously though, beer lovers, keep your dogs away from your tasty adult beverages as you don’t want your dog sneaking your beer at every chance. It’s bad enough keeping a race husky well fed, don’t get them started drinking your craft beer too! Cheers to a safe trip down the old Iditarod trail for all 72 mushers! I hope you all finish and have a Husky IPA when you get to Nome!