“Mush! Hike! All Right! Let’s Go!” are sled dog commands to start the team. We’re proud to sponsor Duluth Women model and dog sled racer Amanda Vogel, of Snomad Racing, to compete at the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon. The annual race, a qualifier for the Iditarod Sled Dog Race, starts in Duluth, MN and runs along Lake Superior’s North Shore Trail to the Canadian border.

“Fun run = 13 dogs, 30 miles, 2 hours, with 200 lbs. in the sled basket. (Plus one wipe out…) I think it’s safe to say the trails are hard and fast… WeEeEeHaAaaaaa!” – Amanda on training

Prepping for such an event is not for the faint of heart. Miles of training trails to clear and pack. Logger trucks to dodge. Hormone-fueled dog pack shenanigans to diffuse while Amanda asserts her alpha status. Thousands of pounds of beaver to grind – to supplement the various dog food required for changing training, racing, and weather conditions. Meticulous attention paid to protecting human and canine athletes from the harsh elements (and wildlife such as moose, big cats and wolves). Nevermind the mental and physical endurance Amanda must fine-tune to successfully navigate 14 dogs on the windy, hilly 4-day course.

Follow along the Beargrease Trail with Duluth Trading Company on Facebook and Twitter for live updates during the race!

Gichigami Express Sled Dog Race 2014 Photo Credit: Nace Hagemann

Wishing Amanda and her team all the best at Beargrease! Image: Gichigami Express Sled Dog Race 2014 Photo Credit: Nace Hagemann