Adventures Along The Iditarod

By: Alexa Courtalis & Kiefer Iacaruso Period: 1 & 5 2/4/16


  • Iditarod trail became a life-saving highway for the children in Nome
  • Transferred medicine to Nome by a string of mushers and their dogs
  • First person to complete race was Dick Wilmarth with a time of 20 days, 49 minutes, and 41 seconds
  • First women to win race was Libby Riddles in 1985 and won 3 more times
  • First international winner was Martin Buser with a time of 8 days, 22 hours, and 2 seconds in 1992 and won 3 more times
  • In the past dogs and their mushers carried mail and supplies
  • Dog sleds helped people get from place to place
  • CAPTION FOR PICTURE: Map of Alaska, and also the trail that the racers follow.

What Makes a Good Sled Dog

  • Lots of speed, endurance, and courage
  • willingness, the heart to complete the race with your best effort, and a desire to get thing done
  • One sign that shows a lead dog its as the dog ages they start to take charge and can enroll commands quickly

About The Race

  • Started in 1973
  • Races take place in freezing weather and snow
  • Held in Anchorage, Alaska
  • Ends in Nome, Alaska
  • 2 parts to the Iditarod
  • First part: Ceremonial race
  • Second part: longer competitive race
  • 1,100 miles long (the race)
  • 10 to 17 days to complete
  • CAPTION FOR PICTURE: The musher and their dogs are running the race with lots of speed, courage, and determination!

Before the Race

  • Trains the dogs by making them run 56km run
  • Good appetite, and good feet (musher & dog)
  • Being able to run far but also going very fast

Musher/ Sled Driver

  • Musher/ sled driver's family often have many dogs
  • Musher/ sled drivers commonly think of their dogs as 3 main things
  • 1. Athletes
  • 2. Family pets
  • 3. Friends


  • Equipment includes: snow parka, snowshoes, an ax, a sleeping bag, food, dog food, and booties for each dog
  • Booties protect the dogs feet from snow and ice injuries
  • Snub line: rope attached to the sled which is used to tie the sled to a tree or other objects
  • Stake: metal or wooden post driven into the ground to which a dog is tied
  • Tug line: line that connects dog's harness to the tow line
  • Mushers eat rice for energy and it is an emergency food that they go to


  • Dog in a basket: tired or injured dog carried in the sled
  • Haw: command for left turn
  • Gee: command for right turn
  • Come gee! Come haw!: commands for a 108 degree turn in either direction
  • Mush! Hike! All right! Let's go!: commands to start the team
  • Trail!: request for right-of-way on the trail
  • Whoa!: command used to halt the team, accompanied by the heavy pressure on the break

Interesting Facts

  • Most famous dog race in the world
  • Sometimes called "The Last Great Race on Earth"
  • Racers compete for $69,000 and a new truck
  • Iditarod is an Indian name meaning "Clear Water"
  • Longest dog sledding race in the world
  • At least 12-16 dogs must start the race
  • March 1 will be the next race
  • Also have a junior Iditarod
  • 5 dogs must finish the race (minimum)
  • Sleds are most likely very light
  • Sleds must be able to carry musher, all equipment, and sick or tired dogs
Big image

In 2005, Thomas Knolmayer starts to run his race.

Works Cited

Crane, Cody. "Cool Runnings." Science World (Vol. 65, No. 10). 23 Feb. 2009: 8+. SIRS Discoverer. Web. 01 Feb. 2016.

"" Dogsled. WordPress & Atahualpa, 2015. Web. 04 Mar. 2015.

Gonzsalez/Clarisel. "Too Little Snow at the Iditarod?." Scholastic News 5/6 (Vol. 76, No. 15). Feb. 4 2008: 6. SIRS Discoverer. Web. 01 Feb. 2016.

"Iditarod Facts and Information for Kids | KidsKonnect." KidsKonnect. N.p., 22 Nov. 2015. Web. 04 Mar. 2015.

"Iditarod." Iditarod -Last Great Race. Iditarod Trail Committee, 2015. Web. 04 Mar. 2015.

Nightingale, Dave. "Iditarod." World Book Student. World Book, 2016. Web. 1 Feb. 2016.

"Race Across Alaska." Weekly Reader-3 (Vol. 74, No. 19). Feb. 25 2005: 2+. SIRS Discoverer. Web. 01 Feb. 2016.

"A Sled Dog Life." Iditarod. Scholastic Inc., 2015. Web. 04 Mar. 2015.