The Dogs



Poor dog. Sadie came to us from the Mat-Su Area Animal Shelter, a victim of puppy abuse. When we first met, her ribs stuck out through her fur and if I left her alone for even a few minutes, she would let out a whine that could bring tears to a mountain lion.

In truth, I didn’t really want the responsibility of having a dog. I had been in a different relationship then, and the young woman I was with rescued Sadie before she learned that dogs weren’t allowed in her apartment. When we parted ways, the dog stayed with me. It didn’t take long for her to win me over, and later, when she lived with Mollie in Homer, she officially became part of the crew.

She was a sprint dog once, but I guess that didn’t work out. The moment she sees a harness, her tail goes between her legs and she masters the art of looking like a hard worker without actually doing any work. She’s a lot like me actually.
Sadie whines less now, and the mascara she wears around her blue eyes has made her a lot of friends. These days she mostly chases squirrels, plays in the mud, and takes naps. It’ll be interesting to see how she fares on the long trail ahead.


Magnolia (Maggie)

Supposedly Maggie is descended from some of the top racing bloodlines in Alaska, and though she was separated at birth, she has never forgotten it. Her princess attitude rarely breaks, and when it does she’s usually holding your hand and burping into your face.

She is, we must admit, a phenomenal athlete; however, she can’t keep up with caribou, and she’s kind of afraid of water. (Sorry, girl.) She came into my life from a kennel rescue in Talkeetna, Alaska, and the first time she met John, she hiked her leg and peed on his bed. Since then, having realized that John has perhaps more energy than she does, she has really bonded with him. 

Among the illustrious career descriptions on Maggie’s resume you might find that she’s competed in skijor races, raked in tips at the hotdog stand in Talkeetna, herded moose, almost caught a caribou, climbed rock cliffs along the Chena river, paddled the Chatanika, and filled in as a sled dog here and there. A 2,000 mile hike? ‘Show me the trail,’ she says.



This is a very special girl. She came from the Fairbanks/North Star Animal Shelter in 2010. I had just broken up with a guy and thought it might be better to have a dog that snores and sleeps on the couch all day. Though we tried some skijoring and winter trips at first, Lindsey is an older dog who suffers from arthritis and, let’s be honest, she just missed the couch too much. For this reason, among others, Lindsey Lu will be staying home for this trip. We are very grateful to my parents for agreeing to hang out with Lindsey in Savannah for the duration of the hike. The rest of the crew will miss her, but know she’ll be better off staying put. This is what Lindsey says about the whole deal:



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