January was cold and dry, and while February started off cold, it has gotten a lot warmer lately. The dog runs are getting longer, since I'm supposed to go out to the White Mtns the first week of March, so need to get them in better shape. My friend Bill came over last weekend and we ran two teams out into the valley behind our place. He took this photo of me on the trail, with a cell phone I think, and I look mostly bemused. Don't often run with another team so I guess I was suitably confused.
The following Monday, the warming trend turned into a chinook and the temperatures got up to near forty the next few days. The snow pack got real soft by the end of the week and the inevitable horde of snow machines and 4-wheelers tore up the trails pretty good over the weekend. It's finally starting to cool off and snow a little bit now, but the outlook for serious dog training remains marginal, at best. I think anyone who doesn't believe in climate change should try running dogs in Alaska.
Update on Sunday, Feb 28: After a fair bit of snow towards the end of the week, the temperature dropped to -20°F on Saturday and was only a little warmer today. The forecast is for a lot warmer by midweek, so the temperature roller coaster continues. I leave for the White Mtns tomorrow. Can only hope that the weather is decent for running dogs, but it'll probably be interesting no matter what.