Forty-nine mushers and hundreds of sled dogs dashed 11 miles through a snowy Anchorage on Saturday for the ceremonial start of the 2022 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.
Alaska Public Media’s Jeff Chen reports:
People lined downtown streets and city trails to give mushers high-fives and take photos. Kids collected candy and dog booties tossed by mushers as they glided by.
It was the first ceremonial start since 2020. Last year’s was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Some fans on Saturday, including Anchorage resident Julie Sweetin, said it felt great to be back to “normal-ish.”
“This is our big crew of friends in Alaska, like we have friends who came up from Homer, from Kenai, from Talkeetna — all over,” she said. “And the last big party we all had, especially in a public place, was Iditarod 2020. Right before the world shut down. So this is full circle for us, definitely.”
Here’s our favorite photos from the day:
Image at top: Musher Yuka Honda’s dogs excitedly wait to run again after recovering from a notoriously tight turn during the 2022 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race ceremonial start. (Jeff Chen/Alaska Public Media)