The Big Picture

2016 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race

Dallas Seavey won his fourth Iditarod race today, completing the 1,000-mile trek from Anchorage to Nome Alaska in a record 8 days, 11 hours, 20 minutes, and 16 seconds. This year’s race was marred with tragedy when a snowmobile driver was charged with intentionally running his machine into two sled dog teams, killing one dog and injuring others. The race is a remaking of the freight route to Nome and pays tribute to the role sled dogs played in the settlement of Alaska.--By Lloyd Young
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Rob Cooke's team leaves the start chute at the restart of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Willow, Alaska on March 6. (Nathaniel Wilder/Reuters)
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A musher handler with Alan Eischens team embraces one of Eischen's dogs just before the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race that begins a near 1,000-mile (1,600-km) journey through Alaska’s frigid wilderness in downtown Anchorage on March 5. (Nathaniel Wilder/Reuters)
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A competitor during the ceremonial start of the annual Iditarod winter festival in Anchorage on March 5. Several train cars filled with snow were brought from Fairbanks to Anchorage this week to ensure a snowy ceremonial start for the famous sled dog race. (Katie Orlinsky/The New York Times)
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Champion musher Martin Buser's son, Rohn, is seen with his dad's team before the restart of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Willow, Alaska on March 6. Mushers and dog sled teams from around the world embark on the first leg of Alaska's grueling Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, starting a nearly 1,000-mile (1,609 km) journey through the state's unforgiving wilderness. (Nathaniel Wilder /Reuters)
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Workers offload an Alaska Railroad train that delivered tons of snow to Anchorage on March 3 after traveling 360 miles south from Fairbanks. The snow will be used to help provide a picturesque ground cover on the streets for the ceremonial start of the 1,000-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Anchorage, where persistent above-freezing temperatures have melted much of the local snow. The competitive part of the race kicks off Sunday 50 miles to the north in Willow. (Rachel D'Oro/Associated Press)
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Musher Justin Savidis' dogs wait in the truck before the restart of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Willow on March 6. (Nathaniel Wilder /Reuters)
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Martin Koenig's team gets tangled up after leaving the start chute at the restart of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Willow on March 6. Mushers and dog sled teams from around the world embark on the first leg of Alaska's grueling Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, starting a nearly 1,000-mile (1,609 km) journey through the state's unforgiving wilderness. (Nathaniel Wilder/Reuters)
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Cindy Gallea's team crosses a lake after the restart of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Willow on March 6. (Nathaniel Wilder /Reuters)
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A team heads out at the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race to begin their near 1,000-mile (1,600-km) journey through Alaska’s frigid wilderness in downtown Anchorage on March 5. (Nathaniel Wilder/Reuters)
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Two Iditarod teams head toward Kaltag on a slough of the Yukon River. The front pack of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race drove off the river at Kaltag and crossed land toward Unalakleet on March 12. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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Children in Shaktoolik visit Wade Marrs' dogs. Iditarod mushers battled a windstorm coming in and out Shaktoolik on March 13. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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Musher Ralph Johannessen takes a nap at the Rainy Pass checkpoint. Mushers in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race came and went from the Rainy Pass checkpoint for much of Monday, March 7. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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Pete Kaiser departs Shaktoolik as Iditarod mushers battled a windstorm coming in and out of the Shaktoolik checkpoint on March 13. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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Snow falls on one of Peter Kaiser's sleeping dogs in Takotna on March 9. The checkpoint on the Takotna River is a popular spot for racers to take their 24-hour rest during the race. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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Dallas Seavey, left, talks with his father, Mitch Seavey, shortly after they both arrived in White Mountain. Dallas Seavey led all other mushers into White Mountain during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on March 14. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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Ralph Johannessen drops down onto the frozen surface of Puntilla Lake in the Alaska Range on March 7 at the Rainy Pass checkpoint. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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A sign left at the Unalakleet dog team parking area remembers one of Jeff Kings dogs who was killed after being struck by a snowmachine on the Yukon River. Brent Sass, Dallas Seavey and Aliy Zirkle were the first mushers to reach Unalakleet in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on March 13. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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Kristin Knight Pace raises her arms as she approaches the Rohn checkpoint on March 8. Mushers in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race reached the Rohn checkpoint and points beyond on the west side of the Alaska Range. (Marc Lester/Alaska Dispatch News)
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Dallas Seavey poses with his lead dogs Reef, left, and Tide after finishing the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on March 15 in Nome. Seavey won his third straight Iditarod, for his fourth overall title in the last five years. (Mark Thiessen/Associated Press)
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