Monday, 22 December 2008

Cold Enough For Ya?

Aussie handler Chris is quickly finding out that here in Canada, at least in the winter, the standard "Hello. How are you?" greetings don't apply. The standard Canadian greeting for this time of year is "Cold enough for you?".
The answer for the last week here, for ALL of us - me included - is YES!!!!!!!!

For about the last 10 days the thermometer has not ventured above -20 (-4F), mostly hanging out in the -30 (-22F) range. Yesterday, my digital thermometer that goes 'off scale' at -30 never registered a temperature and this morning it is hovering around a balmy -40 (-40F) according to the big outdoor thermometer.
We are pretty skilled at getting by in these conditions, but it certainly requires diligence and caution. Traveling anywhere has to be planned well in advance, as vehicles need to be plugged in, warmed up and still used with a plan of what will happen if they happen to break down - because EVERYTHING is more prone to breaking down at these temperatures.
I've only been running when temperatures are above -30, as we are still mostly training with the ATV and they just don't run well in extreme cold, but when I do I'm layered with all my top notch cold weather clothing and the runs are not more then 3 1/2 - 4 hours.
A frosty Crunchie

The dogs are still running well when they are running and even though they are behind on mileage, I'm happy with their attitude and enthusiasm.

As soon as it warms up a bit, I will be on the trails as much as possible!
My little house of cards has been mostly rebuilt. Mark and I are leaving for Alaska January 10th. Chris will be house sitting until the end of January, at which time Kathryn (yup, THAT Kathryn and we are VERY grateful to her!!!!) will be dog/house sitting until Helen gets out on the 12th of February. Mark and the dogs will be home late in February and I'll be following at the end of the month (more on that later!!)
The truck is back from it's repairs and looks great. The only way you can tell it was damaged was that 5 pawprints are missing from the passenger door and front quarter panel - but we will get those done sometime soon.
Mark just finished up some new safely bars for the boxes and mounting some whiteboards on the inside of the rear door to help us keep organized on the road and it is now ready to roll. All of us are getting impatient to get on the road!
Colleen is coming out for Christmas this year, which should be nice. Mark is working right through the holiday, but he will still be around to eat turkey and stuffing with us in the evening.
Chris headed off to Edmonton for the day today, so I'm on scooping duty. I should get to layering the clothes on and heading out there! I think it is up to about -37 now!

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