Poor trail turns Yukon Quest 300 into a 200-mile sled dog race

The Yukon Quest 300 will be the Yukon Quest 200 this year after organizers eliminated 100 miles from the race because of poor trail conditions in parts of the Yukon Territory.

The race “travels exclusively over sections of race trail most heavily affected by low snow conditions,” officials said Friday in a statement posted on the race website.

As a result, the race will start Feb. 2 in Whitehorse and go to Braeburn and back via Coghlan Lake. Typically, the race goes from Whitehose to Pelly Crossing via Braeburn and Carmacks.

No changes have been made to the 1,000-mile Yukon Quest, which this year goes from Whitehorse to Fairbanks. “Race organizers and officials are actively reviewing trail conditions and will make any changes necessary to ensure the safety of all dogs and mushers who participate,” the statement said.

The 1,000-mile race begins on the morning of Saturday, Feb. 2. The shorter race begins in the afternoon.