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Yukon Quest management not yet worried over poor trail conditions

Alaska Dispatch
Helen Hegener/Northern Light Media photo

A meeting was held Monday to discuss trail conditions on the Alaska side of the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race. Volunteers who monitor sections of the trail between the Interior city of Fairbanks and the Alaska-Canada border report much of the route to be choppy and covered with sparse snow, according to the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.

However, organizers say it's too soon to panic. Alaska's winter weather can be unpredictable, and organizers believe a lot can happen before the race gets under way in early February.

Marti Steury, Alaska executive director for the Quest, told the News-Miner, "It’s pointless to do something with it right now ... It could change a half-dozen times before we’re done."

Much of the trail's current base layer appears to be adequate for mushing, volunteers report. But others, such as Two Rivers Dog Mushers Association, believe sections of the Quest trail are currently "not usable."

The Yukon Quest is set to begin on Feb. 2. The race runs 1,000 miles between Whitehorse, Canada and Fairbanks, Alaska.

Read more and see a collection of images from 2012's "World's Toughest Sled Dog Race."