Monday, February 29, 2016

Snow from Fairbanks will be in Anchorage on Wednesday

Dallas Seavey's lead dogs at the Ceremonial
Start of Iditarod 43 in Anchorage, Alaska.
In an unexpected twist, Fairbanks is shipping 300+ cubic yards of snow via the Alaska Railroad for the Start of Iditarod 44. This is a first for the race. It's nothing new for them to truck snow in for the race - that has happened every year that the start has been run from Downtown Anchorage. Snow plows take the snow off the roads for drivers and most snow gets taken to "snow dumps" until the first weekend in March when it is collected and then brought to the streets that the teams run on.

But this year with the lack of snow - and the last two weeks seeing season high temperatures - there are no snow dumps to pull from. Fans have been wondering all week how the Iditarod was going to pull off the Ceremonial Start - now we know. In true Alaskan fashion snow is coming via the railway. Still, even with the Wednesday night delivery, changes are likely going to be made to the usually 11 mile Ceremonial Start. No plans have trickled down to volunteers as of yet (as you can imagine I'm very nervous they won't be able to make it out to our section) but 11 miles is a lot of trail to put in. They could do it, but with temps staying well above freezing, it may not keep.

We should know, I would think, by Thursday evening if they plan to shorten the start (though I'm hoping for sooner). If it just stays long enough to be slush for the restart all the way through the city I would think they could keep the full 11 miles. But that is A LOT of snow and A LOT of hauling and A LOT of EXTRA man hours. It may not be easily done, if at all. Time will tell.

Think cold, guys. We need an out of no where cold snap to hit ASAP. Like yesterday.

No comments:

Post a Comment