Thursday, April 02, 2009

Taiga Update #1

Hi folks this is Rich reporting on the Taiga 300 and Jillian's progress on the trail. I'm not the seasoned blogger, nor as computer savvy as Jillian is, so just bear with me. 21 teams showed up by Wednesday morning to start the race, Jillian being the 3rd team to leave the starting line. The first teams arrived back here at Wolverine lodge on Lake Louise about five hours and fifty minutes later. Jillian took it easy due to the warmer weather and hot sun, finishing the first 60 miles in seven hours. There was a mandatory 6 hour layover at wolverine before the next 108 miles to the next checkpoint at McClaren Lodge. The first teams left here about 11:30 last night, Jillian left just before 1am and the rest of the teams were out by 2am. Jillian started the race with 12 dogs, but decided to drop Hazel out before leaving Wolverine this morning, because she wasn't having any fun. I will take care of Hazel here at the truck until Jillian returns, hopefully Saturday morning. That is all that I have right now, but I will update as I hear more reports from the trail.

A report from the trail marshal this morning, who is ahead of the teams on the 108 mile trail to the McClaren checkpoint said that a lot of the natural ice bridges on the McClaren River have broken leaving big spots of open water in the race trail. This isn't as big of a problem as it sounds. The river isn't very deep, and the team that Jillian is running is very good in water. This will slow the run times down a little bit. Jillian is planning on taking a rest about half way through the 108, while the teams that are racing hard will run straight through.

News just arrived that Tanya Schletner pulled in the McClaren at 12:04pm this afternoon (108 miles in 12 hours and 33 minutes). and Michelle Phillips showed up just behind her at 12:05pm (108 miles in 12 hours and 27 minutes).

I will write up more reports as I get them!