There is a price to pay when you go on a hiking trip and are NOT in tip-top shape. When they announce the hike is to an ice field that requires marching upward 1000 feet per mile for 6 miles---I AM OUT! Oh--I probably could have made it--but it would NOT have been pretty! SO--one other hiker and I opted out and in a spirit of service volunteered to wash clothes at the Laundromat in town.
NOT to be outdone, we stopped on our way into town and tried to arrange an air flight over the same glacier. It turned out it was too windy for small aircraft that day. BUT GOOD NEWS--the helicopters were still flying. In the course of the conversation with the ladies at the desk, we discovered we could not ONLY fly over the glacier, but land on it and then ride a dog sled around on top. SCORE!!
We were on top of Alaska with no effort and enjoying a wonderful mushing experience with dogs being trained for the Iditarod. Two of the dogs in our team ran the "Big Race" last year and the others were being trained. WHAT AN ADVENTURE!
While waiting our turn to MUSH--we cuddled with these beauties!
The two mushers on the glacier entertained us with lots of information about the race, the dogs, training, and what their lives looked like. It was fascinating!
The dogs are trained to voice and whistle commands of their master. The lead dog listens for instructions and follows the master's commands. The leader has complete faith in the commands of the master and works hard to obey in an effort to please his musher.
Here is a fascinating tidbit about the race--the dogs are trained to NOT stop--even when nature calls! SO they let it fly---literally! I began to think, depending upon your placement in the line--you could be in the direct line of fire for a GREAT DEAL OF YUCK! Unless you are in the lead---you WILL be in the line of fire!
A LOT like life---be very careful who you follow! It is easy to get caught in the back draft of stink, if you are following a REAL Stinker! The only answer is to be in the lead---using the navigation signals given as you run the race. Mush hard--follow HIS lead---and run the race well!
My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.