Friday, October 23, 2009


The dog I love to hate and hate to love. This is Haydens dog. She is a border collie x northend Dawson (the father was a loose dog in the North end of dawson City). Hayden got her 2 weeks before I came along and had already named her sarah, so when i came along I just changed the spelling. She is super smart and driven like any other border collie. When I was doing obediance training she was my demo dog. She was so smart she knew at work was work, but when we are at home or any other place other than work, she is NOT my dog. At work she is great, listens and knows all the commands, but even after 9 years together, she prefers to kinda block out my "suggestions". Since she is nine and a half now, she is just starting to slow down. In the past 2 years I have discovered she has an amazing drive and talent to find moose that have been shot. If a moose goes into the bushes we sit and wait for the moose to lay down, keeps from having to pack them out further and keeps the lactic acid from making the meat bitter. The first time we took her out was a cold and dark night. Hayden had shot the moose and we let it lay down, we waited about half an hour. We could hear him in the bush so was not to worried about him getting too far. By the time we went in it was dark enough to take in falshlights. We took her in with us, only because there was a grizzly bear in the area waiting for gut piles from hunters. When we went in we were confused by LOTS of tracks everywhere, and I noticed she started tracking, so i took the leash from Hayden and started working her and incouraging her to "watch em", she led us right up to the moose who was laying down in the trees. What is great is she was never trained to track or find a moose. She found 2 more this year, one for a friend and then out moose this year. Although we knew where our moose was, it was another training session for her as we knew we could find it and there for she would find it with us. She was SO excited she pulled me through the tundra and onto my face (very unhappy at that moment). She does a great job keeping the ravens away from the tent and LOVES the toys and sticks she can find. A popular question is do I get confused by the dog and I havin ghte same name, NO. Everyone seems to have a different tone in their voice, when talking to Cera or Sarah.

I will try and do an intro to each dog here with updated info as training progresses.

caribou hunting

there are 2 hunting trips worth of pictures here. The first trip was in Aug. and the the last on was last saturday. The caribou from the first trip was used at our wedding and then the next trip is for us and to give some meat to friends who are in need of some meat for the winter. I love going up and seeing so many caribou. CAribou are deffently my favorite of the deer family. We were also luck to see and mom wolf and her 2 cute and fluffy pups out looking for a meal.


Here are some pics of our wedding. We were a hour late for our own wedding, It was really cold up there with the wind...brrr.
My maid of honor and I did most of the cooking and prep for the wedding and had to change in the campground cook shack up at tombstone campground, lol. Iwas a great day, the reception was amazing, but unfortunally we have no pics of it.
The picture of the beaded moose is the first time I have ever beaded an animal and certally the first time I have ever sewen any thing of this size. I have done some small flowers but that has been it till now. "Denyak Kezhe" is Haydens indian name "moose hunter".

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

quick update

Well lucky us! We did manage to get some salmon after all. Although we did not get to go out and get it ourselves :( Hayden got a call from DFO and they had a seized net from a fisher that decided not checking nets was ok. So we went down and got the fish out of the net and came home with 186 fish! Great start! Then after my blog was read, another musher emailed me with a cheap source for chicken SWEET! (a BIG THANK YOU > MP!) So that is going to be in the works soon as well, hopefully after a bit more meat we will be ok, for the winter.
We have snow but not enough to run on yet. When we moved out from Faro, we did not have room to bring the training wheels with us, so I am stuck waiting for snow to start training. Its ok though, we have been so busy, with clean up and preping for the house, and hunting. I am more than happy to be spending lots of time in the yard with the dogs, they are sure getting restless and doing alot of howling now! We have been going for some loose walks, but not too many.
Where we bought land, has moose everywhere, and I mean EVERYWHERE! And for the past however many years, they have had the trails to themselves pretty much of the time, so with big angry horney bulls and aggitated cows, walks are kept to a minimum. It is great to see so many moose though! Unfortually they are out in the evenings when the camerea wont work :(
We are still in the wall tent, it is pretty warm though, and I hope we have another 2 weeks of half warm left. It seems like we always have enough snow to run dogs/skidoos at haloween, so hopefully it will stay warm as it should continue to snow. I have no idea about when the house will come, hopefully soon.
We took a drive up the road to try for another caribou or two, to give to family and friends that need meat and to make dry meat with and it was a wonderful day. Only -6 meant it was warm and there was a good number of caribout running around. We saw only about 300 caribou but it was still amazing! We also saw a big black mom wolf and her 2 brown pups, very NICE! I have pictures but for some reason blogger will not let me up load here, I can up load to other sites/programs but not blogger. So I will be going into town where hopefully there is fast and good connections, and try later in the week to get some pics up.
hope every one is having a good fall and heading into winter well!
happy trails!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

No salmon..?

Well it looks like there are no salmon to feed the dogs this winter. It is a record low for the salmon and they put a limit on how many are allowed to be caught.
This is a REALLY hard blow to us. Being that we have to build a place and everything else that is happening, I was really counting on the salmon. We even went and bought a boat to do salmon with...a boat that is no good this year, and would have caried us through the winter for dog food, if we didnt buy it.
We were going to share a fishwheel with another musher, but he vaery rudly informed us that we are not welcomed to use it now, since he has to catch as many as he can. . I will be calling around Whitehorse for the best deals on ANY kind of meats and fat. If any one has some good suggestions please let me know.
This is devestating, I almost feel like I might have to sell off some dogs and in my mind I cant, I have a great group of young dogs, and some older breeding dogs but thats it, no extras really, especially when thinking about having enough in 4 years to run the Yukon Quest.
So right now I have a head full of crap that is bouncing off the sides but not really prosessing very much. Not sure what is going to happen to the race plans. I know we will be in the Percy Dewolfe race , but other than that not sure what we will do.

Friday, September 18, 2009

whats all new

Well I cant load pictures where we are due to too slow of internet, and I dont have internet at home.
So just an update.
we got salmon,caribou and moose in the winter food storage. We are still cutting the moose up.
We got married, very beautiful day, up at tombstone mountains. Pretty fall colors and it was a bit chilly, brrrrr... but it went really well and was a great day.
We are cleaning up the property and cleaning up where we are going to be building a home. We are getting things on the go starting on Sunday for the winter home.
We are also starting salmon fishing for the dogs starting Monday, so we are building smoke sheds for the meat and we will hang the salmon to cure for the dogs. We figure we will need about 600 hundred or more of dog salmon for the winter.
Then fire wood has to be gotten...
We will be very busy here for the next while getting every thing done. When I can get some slow time I will track down fast internet and get lots of pictures up and a few good stories too.
Hope every one is having a good fall season, hope those who are out braving the cold, fill their freezers, and yards full of meat and fire wood. All the mushers out there some wishing you some great runs!
happy trails :)

Friday, August 14, 2009

salmon fishing

some pics of salmon fishing. We went for salmon so we could have salmon for the wedding!

new dog yard

We got onto our acerage, 9 years it took us! no house, so we are living in a wall tent for now, and have been using the wood stove since we moved in due to frost, hard frosts too....brrrrr. I LOVE IT

pictures of the new dog yard. We had to bang out a bunch of dog houses in a really short time. Being summer we went with slabs (not cheap here... OUCH) and we spaced the boards, in hopes of a breeze getting through, since it has been a warm summer, they are sitting on the ground and the dogs have dug out in them a bit for cooler ground. These are just summer/ fall houses. More work will be done soon to them. They acomadate 2 dogs each, and all the dogs are able to socialize with 2 dogs one in/on the house and the other at the next year. We needed fast tie outs and used, used brake drums which is working great, they are heavy enough the dogs dont move then , but we can if we need to.
I love this set up so far. the males and females are spaced far enough to not breed. The dogs all love this set up to it seems, they love playing and running all around.
It is a temp. yard, maybe for the winter, and next year we will put in a nice dog yard in a different area, once we get it cleaned up.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

all work and no play

Well no pics right now. I will try to add some later, just a quick note to fill in on some of the time here. Our landloard had the phones diconected, so not net at home any more.
We went salmon fishing and have 7 salmon for the wedding (sweet!) It was my first time out salmon fishing and we used nets. Really fun and learned alot. Hayden and his cousin did most of it as I was only able to get out on one run with them.
Work is awesome. I love counting salmon. We have a sonar in the water and we review all the file s and count the salmon as the go up or down stream. We are averaging over 300 a day in the klondike river for the past week almost. Very good! Where we are set up we have an amazing view. Clear shallow water to watch fish go by, eagles and gulls all over and we have a very handsome loon who fishes the grayling there, we watch him for hours swimming and diving. The water is so clear we watch him chase the fish under water, very neat. He has even had the nerves to chase some salmon.
We are up and down and all around with getting our acerage. We have been waiting more than 4 months to get papers signed and have to wait till Monday, hopefully everything can be done, and finnished soon. It is 3 acers and all open. Has dog trails right off the property and is prety private. We got a good deal, since there is a big mess to clean, but we have started and are doing good. Because of being so far behind and now knowing when thisgs would work out, we will be living in a wall tent for a little while.
Picked up the marriage license today. One month to go.....
All the dogs are VERY happy to have the salmon back in the dishes everyday. Right now its the ymmy heads and guts for them, next month it will be the whole salmons for them. Spit was tangling her chain and no matter what I did we she was always tangeling up , so I moved her with Aho, and went to get a different chain to put Aho somewhere eles and he decided it was his time to be a dad and caught Qween. Not happy it happened but so far Aho has been the best male out of the litter, so I am excited to see what we get. I did not plan to breed Qween again till next spring, but....dogs will be dogs, and I will have to take a full time job to support my sweet dogs and pups. I am undecided as to what we will do and how many we will keep. probly all of them, will stay with us. She is due this month so will update when they come along.
I am very excited to be planning the new yard, and house! the house should be next year, small cabin this year. New dog yard and houses. I cant wait. I have been waiting 9 years for our acerage!
Well gotta run we are off to do more work. Hope everyones summer is going good, we have had a few frosts all really :)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I scored a really cool job. I get to count salmon going up the Klondike river for the next 3-4 weeks. I am working 12 hours days , 7 days a week for the next 3-4 weeks. Between dogs work and home I will probly not be doing much if any posting.
We have been running dogs on the bikes working on one on one time and leader training. Really starting to see some potential in Aurora :)
Well had a long day and many more to come.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

summer ...;(

Well nothing has been happening here too much. It has been stupid stink hot. Forest fires all around, some days its filled with smoke in the air. Water bomber planes in and out.
It has been way to hot for me. I am the kind of person who can NOT tolerate the heat, I dont much like a full hot summer sun, and the dogs have not blowen their coats yet, so a lazy summer crew we are. Since I am not a summer person and I fade out pretty fast in the heat, the most I have been doing is letting them run loose and splash in the creek, however they are more content to find a shadey spot and lay in it, so a non eventfull past few weeks here.
We have been out grayling fishing, and what fun that is, I SO love to fish, and the evenings by the river in the shade I can handle.
We FINALLY got our BIKES! SWEET! and it was cool enough to go for a ride last night, with some dogs. I choked on a HUGE bug, it flew right in as I was taking a big breath, and I choked and gagged for the rest of the ride home....I am so GLAD we have less than a month before we get shorter days again :D
I never talk about getting married, to be honest I am not very excited. I never planned on getting married and it was never a little girl fantasy for me. It took me 9 years to finally come around to being "ok" with the idea of getting hitched, but I must say I love planning the thing. We are hoping to do as much as we can on our own, since there is no one to make a cake, (I want a REAL wedding cake, not a out of the box cake ), so I dont bake and now and going to order up a wack of baking stuff and will be baking cakes for any ones bday this summer. NO one is around for flowers, I am not big on flowers so like heck I will pay someone to to put them together and drive them from Whitehorse. Whitehorse trips are for DOG FOOD, not flowers! SO I am growing all mine, I dont need alot, but have them all potted now, I might add more as I go, but am done with those for now. The dress is a BIG deal, I hate dresses! I wanted a winter wedding so I could get a fancy parka made, but winter travel is a concern for fam and friends :( ( I think if they are really willing to be there then travel in the cold...but I will let Hayden have this one) So my dress that I setteled on, was a web site order, and now the site is gone..yah FUDGE! Do you know how hard a dress hater has to look for a dress? My mother in law has offered to sew a deer skin dress with beadwork, which is super sweet and WOW, but I am not sold on the idea......
The roses are out and full bloom now, I have looked into freezing them and apperently you can freeze them fresh and they will hold, so I will give this a go, either way I will have rose petals at the wedding or compost for the garden, either way its a win win. Although I am not fancy or girly, I figure if I am going to allow myself to be taken off the "market" and do this wedding thing, I may as well have as nice of one as I possibly can. Check back as the summer goes on, and I will add my ideas and *freeish* tricks that I try here.
For food, we are thinking of a big BBQ. moose,caribou, salmon and other fish. We have a place that sells fresh produce out of their garden and will be using alot of what they have for the salads and other dishes.
Hope some one out there is injoying the hot weather, on the bright side of fires come morel musherooms, mmmmmmm. Yummy. I just used up the last of my orange top shrooms the other day and need a new stock of shrooms.
If you have any suggestions ot advise please fell free to share!

Friday, May 22, 2009

first close bear of the year

HOW exciting, I was on my way up the dome road (driving) and saw a good size black bear, He (I am sure) was by someones little cabin as we drove by, so I backed up and shut the truck off. He came closer and closer and then he swatted the ground a few times and huffed at me! I have seen ALOT of bears and been real close to alot, but have never had one chalenge my presence. SO EXCITING!!! I love this kinda of stuff.
He wondered into the yard of the cabin dwellers and I thought I should tell the Mr. Fish cop about him (hiking trails right there and kids all around) so I went up the hill and turned around and he is now standing on the guys porch sniffing the BBQ. So I stopped for a few more minutes and he stood up on some junk in the guys yard and shook his big head, and there was slobber everywhere! (wonder what was cooking in the BBQ so far?).
He then wondered off into the direction of he popular hiking trails and I to the fish cop office. Got my fishing license! Had put off the fishing due to high water, went to the bluffs and the water is up alot and dirty again so have to wait a little while still I guess :(
I figure I need to find my self a pair of James Bond(ish) glasses, a set with a built in camerea, as it was sitting at home again grrr!
Cant wait for more encounters! So neat to see them close up!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Black hills and back

We drove out to Black hills yesturday. My first time out there. I love to travel and see our country that is around us, and to see the history an wildlife.
We saw 3 bears,2 moose, 3 porcupines, 1 black wolf, cranes, geese, ducks, muskrats, beavers and many smaller birds.
We left home at about 5:20 pm and got out there at 8:30ish. We had to go out, because my father inlaws truck blew the transmition, this year he is hoping to make a go at gold mining. We didnt get home until about 2 in the morning, really slow drive out.
We saw alot of the old buildings, many are still along the sides of hills,creeks and the road. From the times of the gold rush in the Klondike here. I love seeing these old buildings and imagining what it was like to have walked or went in by dog sled into these parts, to leave everything you ever had behind in hopes of finding gold, only to end up for many hoping to find warmth and food, to get through to the next day, with nothing but gold holding you there.The building are old and weathered, most fallen or getting ready to fall. I love to think who was here...? What were the names of these people, how did they do, did they fair well?get rich? or die trying? Some day I will go in for pictures of these old homes and shelters, mine shafts and the memory of lost dreams...lost lives...and the gold that held them here. As I read more about the gold rush, it was harsh and not many made it out rich, if they made it out at all. I was not able to stop of pictures since we were late leaving to go in and the guys would not have been in a mood for me tromping around for pictures.
It is amazing, the roads which are made by modern day gold seekers and finders go ontop of the mountains and into the lowest creeks, it is beautiful , on top you can see for miles, in every direction, and in the valleys there is wildlife of all kinds everywhere.
And straw, I was wondering why straw was in spots along the road, and it is because the Yukon Quest runs along the roads as well, COOL!
I am not a fan of mining, I have heard alot of bad stories about mines and have seen some myself, of them ruining the land and dumping toxins in the earth. Not good. When I came up here and saw the gold miners, they are different (from what I have seen so far). The love where they are, they do their best to keep things right & clean. However, last year we went on a moose hunt and we went into a valley where the ground was upside down for miles, and miles and clear accross the valley, I thought to myself WOW an entire vally ruined for the greed of gold. As we went on it seemed to be a great valley for moose, and grayling (a northern fish). I was amazed at the amount of beavers and grayling. There were hawks, cranes,geese, and amazing amount of wildlife, and moose. I thought geesh what a waste of a perfect willife area, turned upside down, too bad.....
Then yesturday I was listing to my father in law ( who is a native of the area and has a amazing knowledge of the bush,wildlife and the area). As he talked he pointed out some really interesting stuff. The creeks, before the miners truned them up and the ground around, it was pristine, spruce (swampy sprunce) forest. No fish, not many if any beavers and not much for moose to wonder in and eat. Now the creeks are gravel, which allow for fish to spawn in , the turned earth grows willows, which feed the beavers, moose and muskrats. Grasses grow, the water birds come in and there are ponds everywhere. Although because the ground has been turned and there is verly little dirt on top, it does take a good while for regrowth in these areas. In the mean time it gives the bird a place to stop and relax on their migrations north and south. In the years to come there will be growth and many new wetlands (which is being diminished very fast). There are new ponds for beavers and moose, the open areas allow moose to be safe and spot preditors. The willows feed the rabbits, and when they are all doing well with lots of feed and water, the preditors do well. It all makes sense I guess as long as you can see past all the gravel and turned earth. The mining opens and recreates an entire new eco system, one that in turns feed the locals with fresh moose every year, puts fur on the markets which help some trappers out, creats new places for the fish to spawn, and keeps us going, Dawson is a town that is built and lives through gold and tourism.