2010 TORCH RIVER RUN BLOG
Saturday, March 6, 1:43 pm - The race is over. Tyler Guilleman won the 6-Dog and as you know, Bart DeMarie won the 10-Dog
Saturday, March 6, noon - Finally, I found a place to report from. Well as you read this the 6-dog teams are starting to arrive. Will report more on that later. The 10-dog teams all arrived at the Finish in good shape. It was hot and slow going later in the day yesterday, but all went well.
Friday, March 5, 8:00 pm - The first leg of the 6-dog race is now complete with the first musher arriving at 3 hours and 56 minutes and the final team completing the run in 7 hours and 18 minutes. I was a very warm run for the dogs - but beautiful running down the beautiful Esker Trail. The Whiskey Jacks revelled in picking up the remnants of the discarded dog treat crumbs. Rumour has it that two mushers spent some time in one of the warm up shelters, this sure affected their finish time. Happy Anniversary Danel. Tomorrow we go again. Three of the 10-dog teams have finished by now, with two more still on the trail.
Friday, March 5, 9:40 am-
There were not many people out to see Bart DeMarie cross the finish line
this morning-- how many people would you expect to stand out on a frozen
lake at 5:13 AM even to see a winner? All of the 10 dog teams left Lower
Fishing this morning in the dark, but day light will catch them in the
eskers. Lyle is reported to be resting- probably eating- in check point
# 3, Rumour has it that he will stay for an hour or so. Have to go
as there is to much action starting here with the
Thursday, March 4, 10:45 pm - Well, all the teams are in to Piprell Lake. Bart has left and is expected in River Trail Country Vacations (Checkpoint 3) at about 1:00 am and could be crossing the finish line in Tobin Lake at 5 am. I am going to bed now and will be back on duty early tomorrow morning. Check out the current stats on the Race Results page for possible time for other teams to leave here.
Thursday, March 4, 8:00 pm - Three teams are in at Lower Fishing. The ladies here serve a mean dish of chili and excellent "non fattening" pie!!! Gerry reported that for every down hill there are two up. Everyone is sitting here telling stories and reminiscing about past races. Come out here for the start of the 6-dog race tomorrow at 12:30 pm. It now looks some of the 10-dog teams will be leaving in the morning, so they can enjoy the Eskers in the daylight.
Thursday, March 4, 3:00 pm - Right now the only 2 teams are on the trail, Gerry Walker has left Piprell about half an hour ahead of Lyle Munro, so they are definitely racing each other now. The other 3 mushers are sound asleep, Bart is in Lower Fishing Lake on a mat on the floor, while Marc and Brad are enjoying the hospitality in Rainbow Lodge waiting for cooler weather or maybe spring which ever comes first.
This note would have been on here much earlier, but some people made a wrong turn and tried to drive to Flin Flon.
Thursday, March 4, 9:50 am Rumour has it the Trail Boss and the Race Marshall stopped for a whiskey and almost missed the first dog team crossing Snowfield Road. Gerry and Lyle are bonding on the trail, I wonder when they will start competing. The mushers are telling us there were lots of bare spots on the trail but the trail is hard and fast. It got better the closer they got to Piprell. All the times are on the Result Pages. The last 2 teams are in and all the dogs are looking good. Marc was having a bit of leader trouble. Brad's were tired but this is the longest they ran this winter.
Thursday, March 4, 8:33 am - Lyle Munro arrived in Piprell Lake at 8:16. What a beautiful checkpoint, excellent hospitality and a great breakfast. The first team should arrive at Lower Fishing Lake at about 12:30
Thursday, March 4, 8:03 am - Gerry Walker arrived at Piprell Lake at 7:47 am. Bart DeMarie just left. Teams are looking good.
Thursday, March 4, 4:15 am - The first team is in to Rainbow Lodge, Piprell Lake at 4:01 am,
Wednesday. March 3, 11:35 pm - Teams have crossed the Snowfield Road, all moving fast. Gerry is still in the lead, no changes in positions. Some bare spots on the trail, but it has cooled down tonight, it is -11 degrees C.
Wednesday, March 3, 8:40pm - Teams all left the finish line with no tangles or problems. 10 miles down the trail the only changes were that Marc passed Brad. They are running about 10 miles an hour.
Wednesday, March 3, 3:00pm - The Musher Meeting and bib draw are done. Check the Start page to see the start order. Please note there are no #1 and #2 bibs. Will write more later tonight after the start.
Tuesday, March 2, 2010 - ‘Tis the night before race day and all through the yard, not a dog is stirring not even “Mouse”. The exuberant bundles of muscle are all sleeping soundly, they are ready to run.
The mushers are not the same! They have a thousand thoughts racing through their heads as they toss and turn trying to sleep. Some of these thoughts are: do I have enough food, socks, harness, knife, extra gloves, mitts, dog booties, socks (again), cooker, and protection from wolves, buffalo, and other wildlife? It will sure slow me down if I have to stop and butcher a buffalo on the trail. Did I pack extra socks? It goes on like this all night long.
It is like this for every race and when it quits happening, then it is time to quit racing, as that excitement and the mental edge that goes with it is gone.
Sorry the expected 10-dog team is not coming after all. But, we have one more 6-dog team, Jillian Taylor from Alberta.
See you all later, Jim Tomkins
** 6-dog restart is now at 8:30 am at River Trail Country Vacations on March 6th
Recording star Donnie Parenteau will be entertaining in Pat & Aandie’s Tavern at about 1:00pm on Wednesday followed by another renowned fiddler who just came off the road with Neil McCoy. Come and meet them and see the jiggers.
Rumour has it that there will be another 10-dog team at the start line – there is much speculation as to who it will be!
My prediction – As it stands right now, if I were a betting man, I would put my money on either Bart DeMarie or Gerry Walker. They are both extremely good and experienced. Gerry just won the Canadian Challenge and Bart placed well in the Yukon Quest. My guess is that Gerry will run fast and rest more; Bart will travel a little slower but only take the mandatory rest. We all know the story of the tortoise and the hare.
I don’t know the other teams as well, but I expect they will travel a bit slower and battle it out for third place. We will see who will prove me wrong!
I had the pleasure of seeing some of the trail and spent some time at the Rainbow Lodge at Piprell Lake and River Trail Country Vacations Lodge. It made me want to go out and buy another dog team! I will definitely be back to both this summer to enjoy the great fishing at Piprell Lake and quading at River Trail. Marvin at the River Trail shared his recipe for “hot toddies” with me. I share his tastes!
I expect 4 or 5 more teams could still enter the 6 dog event. We will be full and may have to turn someone away, so if you are thinking of entering, DO NOT WAIT.
I HOPE TO SEE YOU ALL AT THE START ON WEDNESDAY EVENING!!! Jim
February 19. 2010 -
Good news!!! Bart has crossed the finish line
in the Yukon Quest, the first team ever from Saskatchewan to do so.
Congratulations Bart and all of your team, both 2 and 4 legged members. A
job well done!!!!
February 14, 2010 - Great news - we just now spoke to a new major cash sponsor, who wants to come on board. Look for detail in the near future when it is finalized.
February 13, 2010 - 2 weeks and 4 days till race time. We have a good assortment of entrants and are looking forward to good weather and a good time. We have competitors of all varieties, from professional to beginners. It should make for a very interesting race. Our checkpoints are ready to go. Plan on coming out to the start in Christopher Lake on Wednesday, March the 3rd at 7:30 pm. We timed the start so that working people have time to get out and enjoy the excitement.
Bart DeMarie is halfway in the Yukon Quest and is still coming on strong. Gerry Walker has just won the Canadian Challenge. Come and meet the mushers and see the championship teams. Cheer them on or go for the new mushers, they all need your support.