Dispatches from the Trail: Shaktoolik-to-Koyuk trail beats up veteran mushers, shifts trail

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KOYUK, Alaska (KTUU) - We're at a critical part in the race right now where things are starting to shake out. Mitch just left a couple of minutes ago. He's visibly shaken. He's been beat up by the wind. His dogs look better than he does. His intention is no longer to chase the pack, but to survive, himself personally, the run.

DeeDee Jonrowe talks about trail conditions from Shaktoolik to Koyuk. (KTUU)

Everybody took a little bit of a mental washing machine out there. Also, I've noticed that Travis Beals came straight from Unalakleet to here, took an hour-and-a half break in Shaktoolik and got water in them, and you could see that in the speed of his team as he was moving with Matt Hall out on the ice last night.

Read all of KTUU's Dispatches from the Trail with DeeDee Jonrowe here

The ice was really jumbled. It's not a permanent trail, it just keeps moving around. The stakes, If you look and see where people are going in circles, they might literally be going in circles trying to stay with the staked trail and as the ice moves, that staked trail kindof goes back and forth. We found it hard on snowmachines last night.

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