While the winter solstice is often thought of as the first day of winter, in Alaska, this day symbolizes the return of the sun, as the daylight increases following the solstice. While the winter solstice is the shortest day of the year, in fact several days around solstice are effectively the same.length at about 3 hours and 43 minutes in Fairbanks. (http://ak-wx.blogspot.com)
For me, the solstice means that the longer and warmer days of winter are on the way. The best time for running dogs comes in February and March, when the longer days provide enough daylight and give you the energy needed for the most enjoyable dog runs of the year.