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Word Count: 901
The Idatarod Picture this You are going to travel over one thousand miles across Alaska---by car by train by plane NO You are travelling by dogsled - your only companions on this journey will be eleven to fourteen of the most honest loyal and strong dogs that you can find For over six grueling months you and your carefully selected dogs have been training and now it is up to you and your canine companions For sledders or mushers this is a dream come true because they are about to start the Iditarod - a name possibly derived from the Indian word Ingalik meaning distant place Only half of the starting team of dogs will finish Those with the strongest heart and the will to go on against overwhelming odds will complete the race The Iditarod is a dogsled race that takes place in Alaska every year It goes from Anchorage Alaskas largest city to Nome stretching over 1000 miles of icy snow-covered ground The Iditarod was begun in the 1960s when people tried to restore tradition to Alaska It was first run to commemorate a trip that took place in 1925 to deliver medicine to Nome The race has two routes the Northern and the Southern In even-numbered years the Northern route is used and in odd-numbered years the Southern route is used The Iditarod is the hardest and toughest dogsled race there is Sometimes the mushers get so tired they hallucinate What makes the race so demanding Three features time temperature and distance The temperature in Alaska is so cold that it can reach up to
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