This past Saturday in Bayfield, we celebrated the 21st Annual Apostle Islands Dog Race. I look forward to this event as it affords me an opportunity to watch these dogs enjoy what is perhaps their favorite activity. Yes, sled dogs are happiest when they are pulling a sled – at least the ones I saw this past weekend. Their excitement is so great, it overflows out of their slim athletic bodies and it’s exhibited by their “flying” or singing - I would even call it complaining. For these dogs, the starting signal cannot come soon enough. They have no time or patience for fanfare or celebration, or for the necessary waiting time between teams. No, sir, they just want to go, go, go.
As for us humans the weather couldn't have been more perfect or more incredible. A mild 35 degrees in the middle of February was just right to spend a lot of time outdoors, but a bit troubling at the same time. We should not have such warm weather this early in the year, but while the temperature was ideal for us, I believe the dogs would have preferred it to be slightly colder. Warm or Cold, however, they were ready to run. So here are but a few of my favorite pictures which show their mood on that day.
Jumping for joy, for excitement, whatever it is. This darling sure can fly.
Pride, joy. The white dog on the right seems to exhibit all those traits as he and his team prepare for their turn at the starting line.
Determination, excitement, joy, focus - all those traits are exhibited here.
The dogs on the left appear to have confabulated with one another to bring us their synchronized tongues. These photos were taken around the mid-way point, so much of the intense energy built up during the start has already been spent.
21ST. Apostle Islands Sled Dog Race