ukon Quest home page and dogsledding website by Yukon Quest musher Gerry Willomitzer

 
Sponsors


Skookum Asphalt Ltd, Whitehorse, Yukon



Whitehorse, Yukon


 


Blackjack of spades.jpg (20913 bytes)

 


Jan 31, 2008 at my place.
 Not photoshoped. 
There is room to go lower...


 

Sponsors

Biography

Newsletter

Dogs for sale

Race History

Race Map

No Tours

Links

Contact Gerry

 

photo: derekcrowe.ca

Meet  long-distance musher Gerry Willomitzer and his racing kennel, located near Whitehorse, Yukon. The kennel has currently 40 adult dogs and a dozen  pups, and can look back at participating in five Yukon Quests and seven Iditarods.
Fewer than 20 dog teams worldwide ever completed the 1000-mile Yukon Quest and the 1100-mile Iditarod back to back. Gerry & the dogs became part of this "club" in 2007.


NEWS:

On sleds!
One of the downsides of living isolated (in terms of the number of other mushers in the area) is that we have to maintain our own trail system. And as much I welcome more snow, it usually means going out, preparing trails with the snow machine (and cutting downed trees, marking sketchy river crossings, finding detours around open water etc). Only after a good night of that can we take the dogs on longer training runs. So me & my handler are out there lots, and since a few days there is enough snow to be on sleds! Just enough. Still scratching dirt on down hills and ice going across the vastness of Lake Laberge, but we are on sleds. 

Welcome back Nuway Crushing!
I'd like to welcome again our long-time sponsor Nuway Crushing, of Whitehorse. They can turn one big rock into many small ones. Don't try to make gravel with your blender, it doesn't work. Nuway Crushing are the specialists for the job! Thank you for your continued support!

The team:
Dogs: Largely the same group as in the last two years, so there is a lot of depth and other than some surprises no surprises. Key leaders are Stallone, Willis, D.O.G (Dee-Oh-Gee), Ginger, Scary, Hippo, Steve and Crusader. And of course Carl, famous only for leaving the checkpoints and blasting down the trail. As a dog that hates crowds of 2 people or more he is usually back in the team when approaching a checkpoint. And still there: Drum, age 9 (large picture below). He still outperforms most of his younger team mates, and at this point I can't see any reason for leaving him home. The other usual suspects include Bronson, Blackdog, Charlie, Ike, Chipper, Twinny, Boxer, Garf,  Hurricane & Highlander. Not in the line-up for "longer stuff" are Danny, Greene, Attla, Thor & Odin, due to their young age. But they look steaming hot in training, watch for them in the races next year.

People: Gus from Norway joined us as a handler about a month ago, and comes with lots of experience and good attitude. Darcy is always holding the fort down and now recreating the dogs in form of little felt figurines (not as messy in the house as the real dogs). Nadja was "hired" into the chef position and is busy preparing food drop meals. It's not easy changing one's chef, because good food (along with  the dogs' performance) sometimes is the only means against the hardships of the trail. But she has all my confidence. Jason is our chief mechanic, and tries to keep every fossil fuel burning piece of equipment running. He knows the dog trucks, snow mobile, quads, skid steers and the lean-beangreen-mean-machine inside, bottom & out. And just like Drum Marcus can't seem to retire and is quizzing about when he can jump in that dog truck again. He always follows along to places like the good ol' KGB road in Knik (with it's many resident coffee drinkers like the Redington family or many other friends from as early as his early handling days in the 80s ) - and places beyond.

Maggie:
On a sad note my trusty but bone-headed 13 year-old leader Maggie passed away suddenly in October. (on the "beer label" below, the dog on the right) While her duties lately were limited to keeping the pups in line and the couch warm she played a key role in the team during my Quest years and during the earlier Iditarods. She finished her last Iditarod in 2010, almost 10 years old, with a blistering run from White Mountain to Nome, missing the fastest time from Safety to Nome by mere minutes. She was also the one turning the team for the Bering Sea instead towards Shaktoolik when I lost them that year (one of her bone-headed moves, not too "trusty " right then). The little things that make a difference, good & bad... She lives on in the many pups she had.

Our racing schedule for 2013-14:
December 27: Top of the World 350 (placed 2nd last year - trying everything to improve!) 
Jan 11: Copper Basin 300 (ditto: placed 2nd last year - trying everything to improve!)
February: Denali Doubles maybe?? or Yukon Quest?? I am still sitting on the fence as usual.
March 1: Iditarod
March: Percy deWolfe 210

 

Percy de Wolfe start 2008 - Drum & Johnny in lead. photo copyright: edvos.com