Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Christmas and Puppy Update
Its been a bit difficult to be away from family over the holidays, however phone calls to those living far away have kept us close. When growing up, my immediate family always lived a great distance from the other relatives and traveling over the holidays became the tradition. With family in Ohio and Pennsylvania we always had at least a 12 hour drive from wherever we were living at the time. A US Forest Service family moves a lot and we found ourselves traveling to visit family from places that included Michigan, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia. My parents now live in Arkansas where my dad recently retired from the US Forest Service. My brother, his wife and my nephew also live there. My parents and nephew will make the traditional pilgrimage to Ohio and Pennsylvania tomorrow and here's wishing them safe travels.
Helen, one of my musher team members at Gunflint Lodge this winter, and I treated ourselves to a wonderful Christmas dinner at the lodge last evening. What a treat. This morning dog chores were done, as usual then I took this day off to do a clean up around the dog yard before I ran the dogs. Straw in most houses was wet and needed to be changed and hauled into the woods. While doing this, the dogs got to be in the fenced play area in groups so they could reconnect with each other. Living on chains this winter, they haven't had many opportunities to play together and its so important that they have this time to do so.
Conditions still aren't the best for hauling clients on the main trail but we did receive a bit of new snow over night. Temps were close to 30 degrees F today, making trail conditions a bit sticky. The famous Highland Dog Sled Trail Hill (more like a chute) was not as fast as it has been due to the sticky conditions and with the new snow, the rocks down this chute were as predominant. Let's all hope for snow!
The puppies are growing like weeds and seem so big and bulky compared to little tiny Tuloon who is finally beginning to get her winter coat back after losing it after the pups were born.
The puppies' guard hairs are beginning to grow and undercoat has gotten even more dense and grown longer. They are just beautiful (if I do say so myself) and their personalities are blossoming. They are solid pups. Its hard to believe that these 13 week old babies will be 6 months old my the time we head back from our winter Gunflint Lodge adventure.