Update from Ophir Checkpoint
Wednesday afternoon flew on a commercial flight to McGrath (one of the hubs on the trail) after being given 10minutes warning. Arrived 17:30. Flew out an hour later – at sunset – on a small Cessna to Ophir – the checkpoint just under halfway on the trail.
Scenic place in the forest – huge difference from Finger Lake. The leaders had already passed through. Went to bed for almost four hours as my shift started at midnight. I was on with Norbert and Allen (a veteran – also from Australia).
Had a cooked breakfast at 10am followed by about two hours sleep. Worked through until 1am. Great with all the dogs and mushers – this check point is a lot less frenetic. Joined the “40 below club” – at minus 40degrees the Celcius and Fahrenheit temperature reading line up on the thermometer. It is warmer now (Friday evening) only minus 25 which feels a lot warmer than minus 40! Was walking around this afternoon with a fleece and two thermal layers on outside…
Have stack of photos of the snow, the mushers and the dogs (with the obligatory creative ones). Will post them when I have access to a good connection. Ath the moment have managed to squeeze in an email off the Comms laptop and satellite phone…
Plan is to fly out tomorrow morning – don’t know next checkpoint.