The Yukon Quest is the world's toughest dog sled race, especially in 2006

·2 min read
The Yukon Quest is the world's toughest dog sled race, especially in 2006
The Yukon Quest is the world's toughest dog sled race, especially in 2006

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The Yukon Quest is a sled dog race that has taken place every February since 1984.

The event is officially known as the Yukon Quest 1,000-mile International Sled Dog Race, as it takes place between Fairbanks, Alaska, and Whitehorse, Yukon.

Yukon quest map
Yukon quest map

Courtesy of Yukon Quest

It's considered to be the most difficult dog race in the world because the conditions are extremely harsh.

Each team consists of a dog leader (called a musher) and 6 to 14 dogs. The teams race across frozen rivers, mountain ranges, and isolated villages. The race takes between 10 to 20 days to complete.

Yukon race
Yukon race

Courtesy of Mia Gordon

During the race, temperatures can drop as low as −51 °C, and wind gusts can reach 80 km/h.

On Feb. 12, 2006, five teams in the race were making their way through the course when a massive storm hit. The storm caused the teams to get stuck on Eagle Summit.

Eagle Summit is 1,105 metres high.

The mushers and teams experienced aggressive winds and freezing temperatures while stranded on the mountain. Race officials tried to send search teams, but the conditions were too poor and that specific rescue mission was called off.

Yukon Race
Yukon Race

Courtesy of Mia Gordon

A few hours later, the race officials asked the American Military to help with recovery. The military sent a Black Hawk helicopter, a Robertson R44 helicopter, and a Cessna 208 airplane.

The military used infrared devices to locate the missing teams. Luckily, all of the mushers and their pups were rescued and no one was injured.

yukon race
yukon race

Courtesy of Mia Gordon

To learn more about the Yukon Quest, listen to today's episode of "This Day In Weather History."

This Day In Weather History is a daily podcast by The Weather Network that features unique and informative stories from host Chris Mei.

Thumbnail courtesy of Wikipedia

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