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Beargrease Will Go On; Less Snow Means Minor Changes

Posted at: 03/05/2013 4:05 PM
Updated at: 03/05/2013 10:17 PM
By: Laurie Stribling
lstribling@wdio.com

After being canceled last year and postponed this year, organizers said Tuesday the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon will go on.

Pat Olson heads up the event, and she said trails are safe and ready for mushers.

"They're not perfect," Olson said. "They aren't anywhere near perfect, but there is snow on them and that's what we're looking for."

She said low snow totals will change a few things this year. Olson said pit stops will most likely be in different places and routes will change a little.

She also said mushers may opt to race during the night instead of the day to avoid warm weather. Mushers are just excited the race will go on after cancelling this year.

"It was heartbreaking," Kris Ausland said. "Really, truly heartbreaking for a lot of people that we had to cancel."

Ausland has been running musher Billie Diver's dogs while she attends college in North Dakota. She said the dogs are ready to show off.

The event being postponed did change a few other things. Olson said there are fewer mushers and volunteers signed up.

She said they need 800 volunteers total to pull off the event. As of Tuesday, they had about 300 signed up. If you want to help out with the race, click here.

The race starts Sunday and wraps up Wednesday.