Running Iditarod requires more than just countless hours training, it takes supplies--lots of them. Mushers ship out between 1,800 to 2,500 lbs of frozen meat, dog food, booties, clothing, and vacuum-sealed human food to the 21 checkpoints in between Willow and Nome on the Northern Route. We are gladly accepting checkpoint sponsors to donate $150 and defray the expenses of shipping and dog food and help Gabe afford to run her very first Iditarod.
Iditarod not only celebrates Alaska's proud dogsledding heritage but also commemorates the 1925 Serum Run. In response to a deadly diphtheria epidemic in Nome, the Alaskan territorial government dispatched a relay team of 20 dog mushers from across the bush to deliver the life-saving anti-toxin from the railway terminus in Nenana 674 miles to Nome. Running through some of the worst weather imaginable--from white-out conditions to wind chills approaching -85˚ F--these mushers and dogs risked their lives to save the town's children, who were particularly vulnerable to the disease. The last team reached Nome just six days after the serum vials left the Nenana rail station, a journey that would ordinarily have taken three weeks.
To pay tribute to the mushers and dogs who saved so many during the Serum Run, Gabe will be carrying commemorative serum vials in her sled over the race course. Checkpoint sponsors will receive one of these vials, mailed straight from Nome on the Bering Sea coast when Gabe finishes Iditarod.