Today (well, yesterday now) was all about waiting for the first mushers to cross the finish line,
and this was the scene just as the sun came up in the morning.
I was pretty happy to find front street empty for this shot around 9:30 a.m.!
Then, after a late breakfast,
it was out on the snow machine to explore the terrain surrounding Nome.
My younger brother and I, we definitely got the bundled up thing down!
First, out to the airport to welcome in my older brother and his younger son...
(no comments on the head gear please)
... before heading out onto the frozen Bering Sea for more exploring and sightseeing.
Then inland to check out an old gold dredge, catching a departing plane in one of the shots.
I can't even begin to tell you how much fun this day was,
it was simply amazing to be out taking it all in!
In the above photo Nome lies just at the dip in the horizon.
After a dinner break at the house with a large group, we checked in on the mushers and saw Mitch Seavey was about two hours from the finish line. So we headed out again, as the sun began to set around 8 p.m., to find a secluded spot to see the winner approach town.
About 10 miles out of Nome we found a spot that seemed as good as any, and began our wait. About this time I began to doubt my sanity, as the temperatures began to dip. How long do we have to wait?!?
But a half hour later I spied a small dot on the horizon. "If that's not a bear, we are in luck and we have a winner!"
Yes! This was worth the wait...
As soon as Mitch passed, waving at our well wishes, we hopped back on the snow mobile.
Dashing back into town we arrived at the finish line in time to cheer him in.
Congratulations to the Seavey family, who are friends from time spent in Seward, Alaska. As a side note, one summer while working at the fisheries I stayed out at Mitch's parents property, up a winding road lined with 40 plus huskies. I have often wondered if Dan and Shirley regretted that offer of housing: I would get off work at 2 a.m. each morning after a 16 hour day and wouldn't you know it, every single one of those dogs would start barking as my car drove up towards the house each night of the summer.
Soon Travis will be coming in and we'll all be standing under the finish line for that moment!