2020 Musher Profiles
12 Dog Race
St.Croix Falls, WI – ANDERTIER RACING
I have been racing since 1992. My wife and I have 40 Alaskan Huskies in our kennel. We are excited to return to the Mailrun in 2020.
Cook, MN – MEANDER MOUNTAIN HUSKIES
I’ve run sled dogs since 1985. Raced in the Esslingor Classic, Mid MN UP 200. Ran the Beargrease marathon and shorter BG races and also handled for my wife in the marathon in 2003 & 2005. She (Robin) won the 150 mile race in 1999. Quit racing about 10 years ago, but still kept a dog team for recreation, camping & fishing trips. Decided to start racing again. Robin & I are veterinarians and own Vermilion Veterinary Clinic in Cook MN since 1985. Have 2 grown children: Kirk & Ann. 24 dogs in kennel.
Brule, WI – TALIA’S TEAM
I’ve been running dogs since I was 10 months old, but I didn’t start racing ‘til I was 8. My mom is the one who was running dogs before me and I’ve just taken over the sport from her. I live on a farm with 4 horses and 24 sled dogs. I do carriage shows and pleasure shows with the horses in the spring and summer and dog mushing in the fall and winter. I have a little brother, 11, who helps out a lot with the dogs in the winter and also a mom (Janet) and a dad (Tim). I am really excited for this upcoming race season and what it holds.
Monona, IA – GO THE DISTANCE KENNEL
We are a family of 5. Two of my sons raced their first race last winter. They are active in wrestling and other school sports. My wife is a personal trainer and I am a pharmacist. We are also consultants for Zurvita Nutrition Company. This is my 5th year building a dog team. From Monona Iowa.
Hovland, MN – MOETOWN KENNELS
Sherri and I live in Hovland, MN with our 40 dogs, 2 cats, a mouse and a pig. When we’re not taking care of or training our dogs, we enjoy gardening, hiking, mountain biking and sea kayaking. I also work as a rock climbing, canoeing, and sea kayaking guide for Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply in Grand Marais. We want to thank our generous sponsors: NutriSouce Premium Dog Food, Cook County Home Center, and Krill Pet. Also, thank you to all the volunteers that make the Gunflint Mail Run possible!
Skagway, AK – CALLIN’ TRAIL KENNEL
Erin grew up in Northern Minnesota running sled dogs. She and her husband, Ryan, along with their two children, Eve and TJ, and their 40 dogs, make their home in Skagway, Alaska. They spend time in the winter in the Midwest to run dogs.
Skagway, AK – CALLIN’ TRAIL KENNEL
Ryan grew up in Alaska running sled dogs. His family has a rich history in the sport, as his grandfather, Joe Redington Sr., is the founder of the Iditarod. Ryan has run many races all across Alaska and the lower 48 states. He and his family, wife Erin and children Eve and TJ, along with their 40 dogs, make their home in Skagway, Alaska. They spend time in the Midwest in the winter to run dogs.
Grand Marais, MN – MUSH LAKE RACING
I live on the Gunflint Trail and work as the caretaker for Camp Menogyn. I love this race and even had fun when I was lost on Poplar Lake and went the wrong way on the trail in 2018.
Goodland, MN – SCHROEDER MUSHING
Nathan Schroeder was born and raised in Warba, Minnesota. He graduated from Mesabi Range Community and Technical College in 1999 as a maintenance mechanic. He has worked as a millwright in Local 1348 for the last sixteen years or so. Nathan was introduced to mushing at the age of twelve, when he was given a ride at an elementary school behind a team of malamutes. He is a four time champion of the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon and was the 2014 Rookie of the Year in the Iditarod Sled Dog Race. Nathan currently lives in Goodland, MN with his wife Carmen and their 6 children. When he is not racing he enjoys hunting, fishing, four wheeling, and being with his family.
Tofte, MN – STONEY CREEK KENNELS
I have been running dogs for 25+ years. I have 37 dogs in my kennel, which I operate with my husband Bill. My leaders are Clyde, Ginny, Arimis and Skillsaw.
8 Dog Race
Grand Marais, MN – MUSH LAKE RACING
I live with my husband Matt, 2-year-old daughter Sylvia, and 30 dogs off the Gunflint Trail near Grand Marais. I am a nurse at the local hospital. We enjoy racing in our backyard. This will be our tenth year running sled dogs. I’ll definitely never forget the year I was first out of the chute at the Mail Run. My dogs would not go the right way on the lake. After losing the team and involving several other teams and racing personnel in my misfortune, we finally got going in the right direction, by then in last place.
Togo, MN – UNLEASHED SLED DOG ADVENTURES
Janet is a retired postal clerk from Togo, MN. She got her start with Inuits, and after going to mushing boot camp, she started running Alaskan Huskies, many of them from Jamie Nelson’s kennel. Janet’s highlights from last year include running Race To The Sky, 100-mile distance, and handling for Peter McClelland and Shawn McCarty at the Hudson Bay Quest.
Mountain, WI — FLYING K KENNEL
My name is Kelsey Beaber. I am 14 years old. This is my 4th year racing sled dogs. I have competed in the Copperdog, Midnight Run, Apostle Islands, Taquamenon and Beargrease. I enjoy being out with my dogs, especially the way the sun shines off their backs. I enjoy the time I get to spend with my dogs racing.
Mountain, WI — FLYING K KENNEL
My name is Ryan Beaber. I have had sled dogs for many years and decided to start racing 4 years ago with my 3 daughters. I have competed in many races and I enjoy the quality family time we get to share.
Sioux Lookout, ON – GONE TO THE DOGS
I live in Northwestern Ontario. I do property management for a living, which gives me time to train and enjoy my dogs. This is my fifth year doing mid-distance racing.
Porcupine Plain, SK – YESICAN RACING KENNEL
I live with my husband in rural Saskatchewan. Have about 20 race dogs and a large number of retired dogs. We have a commercial beekeeping company. I have been racing approx. 10 years.
Mountain, WI — BRAVERMOUNTAIN MUSHING
BraverMountain Mushing is a team of pups and humans based in Mountain, WI. They spend much of the year traveling with their Alaskan Huskies, often to Canada and Alaska. Blair Braverman and Quince Mountain and all the so-called “Ugly Dogs” — the human boosters who support team efforts — are thrilled to be returning to the Gunflint Mail Run. Trail Center holds a special place in their hearts.
Grand Marais, MN – AMAROK KENNEL
This is Andrea’s 8th season racing, and her 20th year being around sled dogs. Her mom and step-dad, Robin & Greg Beall, started Amarok Kennel over 30 years ago. Andrea and her husband, DJ, are slowly growing their own kennel with the guidance and insight from the experience of Andrea’s parents. Amarok Kennel currently is home to 40 Alaskan huskies. Andrea works full time at the Public Health and Human Services Dept. in Cook County and takes care of their three children, Tanner (17), Taylor (15) and Talon (11). It is surreal at times that she can participate and race dogs too. She says, “We might not have the fastest or most ideal training schedule, but it is still a Dream come true! I am looking forward to another year of running dogs, successfully managing a dog team, and learning as much as I can from them.” Andrea has previously raced in the CopperDog 80, Gunflint Mail Run, Wolftrack Classic 30, JackPine 30, Midnight Run, Beargrease 120, Mid-Minnesota, and the Winter Warrior 25.
Hovland, MN – IRISH CREEK DOGS
I have a small team of 12 happy dogs, 10 of whom are in my racing pool. We live together in an off-grid one room cabin in Hovland, Minnesota, without running water. What we lack for in modern conveniences we make up for with miles and miles of trails and wilderness right outside our yard. I would like to acknowledge my employer and mentor, Dr. Nadder Samari, and his wife Lee Samari, at Cedar Grove Veterinary Clinic, and thank them for all they have taught me about canine health and well-being. And of course my parents, Susan and Richard Gaffney; without their support I would not be where I am today.
Menahga, MN – TRUE NORTH KENNEL
I am 17 years old and I have been mushing for 5 years. I enjoy mid-distance races such as the Race to the Sky and the Beargrease. My sisters and I own True North Kennel in Menahga, MN. I have 14 dogs and I am excited to try out the Gunflint!
Nolalu, ON – PAWS ON PATROL SLED DOG KENNEL
My wife and I have 25 sled dogs. We have 2 children. I am a Conservation Officer with the Canine Unit and also have 2 service dogs. We try to participate in 2-3 races a year and enjoy all of our dogs and the mushing lifestyle.
Minong, WI — Got Dogs Racing Kennel
I have driven truck over the road since I got out of the army in 1987. Last year I made a decision to be home every night, so I began driving milk truck locally. I have been around mushing since 1970 when my parents had Siberians. I wanted to continue in the sport after I began building sleds in 2005. I chose to go with Alaskan Huskies myself, and love being around my dogs more than most people. I have a kennel of 50 dogs that are my family.
Togo, MN — SPRING ROCK HUSKIES
I am retired. I’ve been racing over 25 years. My main goal is to always have fun running dogs. I have 15 dogs in my kennel.
Togo MN — KLAVEN’S CRAZY K-9S
It all started with one dog back in 2006 says Dusty when asked about HER introduction to the sport. In 2007 Dusty entered HER first race, the Tahquamenon Country Sled Dog Race, 6 dog class in 2007. Dusty came in 3rd, not bad for a 18 year old’s first race. Today Klaven’s Crazy K-9’s is made up of 26 Alaskan Huskies. Dusty has participated in many of the Minnesota races like the Gunflint Mail Run, Beargrease 120, the Wolftrack Classic. Dusty will be part of the inaugural run of the Lake Minnetonka Sled Dog Derby. Dusty’s would like to thank HER sponsors WanderLust Essentials, Barn Yarn, Barbara Schaefer and her awesome handlers!
Hovland, MN – MOETOWN KENNELS
Steph got her start mushing dogs in Ely with Paul Schurke at Wintergreen back in 1992. For the past 15 years, she has run educational tours and youth programs as the co-founder/director of Positive Energy Outdoors in Duluth with her kennel of 55 Alaskan huskies. Through her work as an outdoor educator, Steph has introduced thousands of children and adults to the incredible sport of dog sledding. She is excited for a new chapter of racing as part of Moetown Kennels. Steph lives in Duluth with her 11 year old son, Ansel. Thank you to Frank and Sherri for the opportunity to run this fantastic race, and to Moetown Kennel’s sponsors: NutriSource Premium Dog Food, Cook County Home Center, and Krill Pet.
Granby, CO – SNOW MOUNTAIN RANCH DOG SLEDDING
I am the Chaplain at Snow Mountain Ranch / YMCA of the Rockies. I also run their dog sled program. I have been mushing dogs for 21 years. I currently have 20 dogs in my kennel. My race team leaders are Zoey, Ruthie, Wyatt, and Indigo. Two years ago my oldest daughter died from cancer. Last year I raced to raise money in order to create an endowment that would send an underprivileged kid to camp every year in perpetuity in my daughter Bethany’s memory and honor. We accomplished our mission and raised enough to send one kid to camp every year. This year again I am raising money in order to send two kids to camp every year. It was her desire to have more time in order to impact more lives. I have made it my mission that her life and story will continue to impact lives long after I am gone.
Canaan, NH – SEAL COVE KENNEL
I live in Canaan, NH with 21 Alaskan huskies and Eurohounds. The dogs and I share our home with my longtime partner Kip. I have been racing sled dogs since 1995. Starting with sprints and moving up to 30s, 100s and then 250s. In the last few years I have been focusing on shorter mid-distance like the Gunflint. I was at this race in 2016 and loved it so I’m back. After a recent interaction with breast cancer, I am again healthy, presently working on a Master’s of Fine Arts in Creative Non-Fiction as well as practicing Shamanism. All in all, I’m glad to be alive and very happy to be back in Northern Minnesota visiting my friend Maria Gaffney and racing in the Gunflint Mail run.
Irma, WI – OTTER RUN KENNEL
This will be my first time on the runners at Gunflint and I’m looking forward to getting to race at one of the most musher and dog friendly events there is! This will be my 19th year of racing, and possibly the best one yet as I get to do it with my favorite dog trainers Chad, T-Boone, and Martha.
Milaca, MN – NORDSTAR RACING
My name is Darcy. I’m a Mom, a wife, a teacher and when time permits a musher. This sickness started when a teacher introduced me to the fact that girls can be mushers too. After that Jake Hway took my husband and I out with a team and bam here I am 8 years later with 19 dogs and my own kennel. I should kick him in the shin for that, but instead I race.
Luther, MI – ISKRISTALL
My interest in sled dogs and racing was sparked in 2000 when I took a month classroom leave to spend learning and assisting at the start and finish of the Iditarod. From there I purchased my first 2 Alaskan huskies to skijor. After handling and working with Becky Himes-Johnson I began racing 6 dog races. That led to qualifying to race the Yukon Quest 300 out of Whitehorse in 2017. Following my retirement from classroom teaching, I enjoy training and competing with young dog teams. When not training sled dogs, I enjoy marathon canoe racing. Thank you to dogbooties.com, all my supportive friends, and thank you to the race volunteers for the opportunity to compete at Gunflint Mail Run this year.