On the days we don't train dogs, we let a few off at a time to run around while we're cleaning up the dog yard. Besides tearing around the yard and pissing on all the trees, there's a couple of dogs who wrestle and chew on each other as if they were fighting. But it's all in good doggy fun, since it's gone on for many years and there's never been any serious fights during these skirmishes. No dogs were harmed making this video.
After finishing the dozer work for this year's Nome Creek reclamation project (Dozin' off... 8/9/10), I was asked to help out on the road grader. No problem I said, how does it work? After about ten minutes training, Eric turned me loose on the old tailings road, which I preceded to tear up and then fix until I felt comfortable on the machine. Then I started on the roads that really needed to be graded. It was interesting work and it's always enjoyable to learn to run a new piece of heavy metal.
While I was staying out at the field station, I noticed my right hand was getting numb and looked a little odd. After getting back to town, I was examined by several doctors and found out I have cubital tunnel syndrome, an affliction of the nerves in my elbow that caused muscle atrophy in my hand. So they did surgery on the elbow to release the effected nerve and hopefully next summer I'll be out there driving the grader again.
A little late in posting, like always, but wanted to put up a few photos from our last dog trip out to the White Mtns. Andy hadn't gone out on a dog trip for a few years, so it took some convincing, but once she got interested, she got into it and had a great time. It was a bit of a slog with only eight dogs for two teams, but the dogs ran great and Andy and I got a lot of exercise running up the hills. We had near perfect weather there, 10-20 above, and it was almost 50 when we got back to town. It was a fine way to end the mushing season.
Went back to survey the Delta River at Black Rapids with my friend Mike from Glenallen. Hadn't been there for a winter visit in awhile (Flight Time 4/03/09). Unlike the last time, we had great weather and no equipment problems. The only odd thing we found was that the river was almost frozen to the bottom in the middle, while the two sides of the channel had most of the flow. This created high water pressure that forced water up and out of the center holes, forming a pool of water-covered ice in the middle of the channel. It added new meaning to the phrase slipping up on the job.
Haven't posted for awhile, so thought that February 29th might be good day to always post. That way at least every four years I'd get something out. It's been a cold winter so far, January was the coldest in the last 40 years. I think there were only 3 days when the temperature got above zero. It's hard to get decent dog training when it's that cold. February's been a little better so at least I'm getting out on the trails again. Ruty the Maine coon cat solved the cold problem by sleeping in front of the monitor heater. You'd think a big fuzzy guy like him would get hot; maybe he's a southern coon cat.