Sheep Mountain 150 (Andy)We arrived already at friday at the Sheep Mountain Lodge packed our racing sled and toke a warm douche (even Sebastian).
At samedy the race startet at 12:00 und so Sebastian could go on the trail with number 2 at 12:02, I with no. at 12:10 and Maren with the 91 at 12:20.
The start at Sheep Mountain Lodge was without any problems, even with die really icy parking.
We followed the old highway, where the first mushers passed me, and then the trail toke us in the mountains. The uphills was followed be smaller downhills and than we passed the tree line and had a super view on surrounding mountains. By a small, narrow trail pe came to the deepest point at 800 m of this etappe. Then the trail wins slowly height along the Alfred Creek, be a lots of up and downs, to reach the Belanger Pass at 1500 m. From there a long downhill brings us down to 1000 m where we do the last 8 kilometers to the Eureka Lodge.
After a little more than 5:30 hours I came in the checkpoint - Sebastian was already there on the 2 place, Maren was 5 minutes faster than I.
After a rest of 5 hours, plus the difference of the starttime, a got again on the trail at 23:50 for the nearly 80 kilometer loop. As we had a clear full moon night and the trail goes from one hill to the other I could see a lot of headlights travalling. After an hour on the trail I passed Maren but I had a hard time to get some distance between us. Then the weather changed and we go fog and snow and I had really to be concentrated to see all the trailmarkers, even the trail was perfectly marked. After about 5:30 hours I was back in the checkpoint - Maren arrived nearly two hours later, she did some extra loops in the fog.
With feeding the dogs, waiting for Maren, looking at Sebastians preparations for his last etappe and a big breakfast in the lodge my 5 hours rest passed very fast and at about 10:30 I got out for the last stretch. It was the same trail than after the start only in the opposite direction. The first steep downhill wasn't so bad than I thought - it seems that on climbing up the hills they seems steeper than on the downhill.
As I passed the mine at the Alfred Creek Mr Bones looked out of the windows. After I came out of the Creek I got problems with Uno and wanted to take him in the sledbag, but unfortunately without succes - if the sled moved only a little bit Uno tried everything to get out of the bag. After half an hour with arranging content in the sled an several trys to get Uno in I gave up - I couldn't find any blessures at him I massaged him with massageoil and toke him out of the lead back in the team. I seems that he just didn't want to stay in lead because after that he hadn't any problems.
So I tried to catch up to the other teams and could really got two and crossed after about 6:45 hours the finish line in 25th position - and so I also was fast enough to reach the mushers banquet.
The organisation of the race was perfect but with all this hills it wasn't the easiest one and my feet could tell you something about the miles a musher has to run (of course non comparaison to the dogs).