2010 Seeley Lake Sled Dog Race#1

Good morning everyone! I’m working on a series of stories concerning my three ‘big’ dog races from last year–the Seeley 200, the Beargrease & the Iditarod up in AK–The first of three races in my 2010 season began with the Seeley Lake 200. The race started on January 15th, at 3:00 in the afternoon out of downtown Lincoln, Montana.

Jason Barron leaving the White Tail Ranch--image courtesy of H. Barron


It was about 50 degrees farenheit that afternoon, and I remember walking around in my Cabela’s survival suit (more appropriate for 50 below!), looking at all of the teams in the staging area, sweat running down my face and wondering how the heck the dogs were going to fare in this heat wave.

There were close to thirty teams in the race, some from as far away as Minnesota. Now, I’ve never held myself out as a 200 mile class driver, but I do like to think of myself as being competent at the very least, and I felt really good about the team going into the event. For the most part, I was bringing my ‘A-team’, and I was planning on giving it the best shot that I could…there was a fantastic purse on this years race ($3,500.00 on first place, which is pretty ‘chunky’ for this mileage), and I wanted it to go in my bank account. With that said, I also knew that there were some teams coming that have done much better overall then myself in this class, so there was going to be a fierce contest played out over the next day and a half.

Here is a look at the top teams in the starting roster (in my opinion).

John Barron

Rick Larson

Ryan Anderson

Warren Palfrey

Tom Thurston

There were of course many more drivers signed up, all of them competent, but these were the ones who I thought could all potentially win a race of this type. And the guy at the top of my list was Ryan, though I felt like Dad could be a really big problem, too.

So, it was very warm, and the start was right in the middle of the hottest part of the afternoon, and setting personalities/competition aside, my first priority was simply to get the race underway without overheating my team, and think about opening up the throttle a bit when or if it cooled down later that night.

I’ll be back tomorrow with a look at the first night of the race as we all made our way through the mountains to the White Tail Ranch, and beyond to the halfway point at Seely Lake.

Thanks for tuning in–more to follow….


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