Thursday, January 31, 2013

Tahquamenon Highlights
Team Fortier

Our pit crew, my dad (left) with his long time high school friend, Jerry Papke's dad, Carl.

My mom
photo by Aladino C. Mandoli
Larry & team: Bruny & Pansy in lead, then Tuba, Banjo, Odessa, Daisy, Rosie, and Dee Dee

Photo by Aladino C Mandoli
My team: George & Roxy in lead, Zeus, Poppy, Curlin, Smarty, Manny & Fender

 photo by Aladino C Mandoli 

 photo by Aladino C Mandoli

photo by Aladino C Mandoli

Ana making snow angels

photo by Aladino C Mandoli
1st place 8 dog team: Jerry Papke
Our 1st race was almost a month ago, the Tahquamenon Country Sled Dog race. Larry & I both ran the 8 dog, 42 mile class. We had a great time, the trail was awesome!! I finished in 2nd place behind Jerry Papke's team. Larry finished in 7th place with our B team. Our conditions since have been up and down. After the race, we had a week of warm temps, rain & ice. Then,
 we got dumped on with about 2 feet of snow. We had 10 great days of training. Now we had yet another warm up for 3 days that involved temps in the 40's and more rain & ice. We are supposed to get more snow, but we only have about an inch
ontop of all the ice so far.
 I HOPE winter comes back so we can train again soon. Our 2nd race of the year, the Midnight Run, is only 15 days away on Feb. 14th. Us and the dogs are looking forward to it.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Training, Training and more Training

Training, Training and More Training!

The dogs at Deer Camp for Labor Day Weekend

Ana & Odessa

Larry and team getting ready to run from the kennel

Poppy, George, Boston, Rosie & Gibson at Shaws

The dogs staked out at Shaws

The dogs at Shaws

The dogs after a run at the kennel. Zeus & Cello in lead

Beautiful Juneau at Shaws (Elrond/Odessa)

Daisy, a daughter of George/Odessa

Pansy, another daughter of George/Odessa

Tefa, enjoying her retirement

Ana and her furry brother, Jake

Me and the team at Deer camp. George & Fiddle in lead

The nice buck I am hopefully gonna see tomorrow!
Things are good, but busy as usual at Coyote Run Kennel. If we are not shuttling Ana around to school and her activities we are training dogs. That is all we do this time of year. We will take a couple of days off to deer hunt this weekend but then its back to training. We are looking forward to our races this season and hope that this cold snowy fall means a colder snowier winter. We hope you all have a great Thanksgiving next week! Check our website soon for our 2013 race schedule. Also, if you are in need of any Manmat products contact us!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Summer Highlights

Summer Highlights

Ana finishing her 1st race, the 1 mile fun run at Alpenfest

Larry & Ana after their races. Larry got 3rd in his age group in the 10K

Larry at his 1st race of the year, the Mellon 5K

On our way to Taylor's wedding

All dressed up for Taylor's wedding on Mackinaw Island. We had so much fun!!

At the Gavin Degraw concert in Interlochen

Ana with Mia

Our dog yard project. Over 40 trees were cut to make more room.

Our friend Rob standing on a HUGE root ball

After a ton of work, this is what it looks like. Much nicer not having all the trees around!

Now we can hook up our team right in the middle of the dog yard instead of taking each dog 70+ yards each time. We also have a new outgoing trail so we don't have to go down our driveway anymore.

The view of the other side of the dog yard. Also built 4 new pens. We still have to fence the entire yard, but we are working on it.

This is a picture of our old dog yard so you can compare. It was heavily wooded, so it was hard to have any type of organization with all the trees in the way. It is nice having all the room now!

We have had quite a summer this year!! Been super busy, so always forget to update the blog. I figured I better do it before training starts!! Our dog yard project was the huge project of the year. We started in late April. Our friends Rob & Joey came to help and cut all the trees and Joey did all the dozer work. We could not have done it without them!! It is soooo much nicer now!! Dog training starts in one week, I cannot wait to hook up the dogs for the first time in the middle of the dog yard. This will be so much easier for us! We still have to fence it, which we are currently in the process of.

Some fun highlights: my super fun all girls weekend with friends from high school, the Gavin Degraw concert, the 4th of July (fireworks with friends), my bestest friend for over 28 years coming to Michigan for 2 weeks, Alpenfest, our friend Taylor's Mackinaw Island wedding, and Farm Fest. We have had so much fun this summer. We have 2 more events, Camping and Larry's half marathon, then dog training starts! I cannot wait!! The weather is cooler and the dogs are restless and full of energy.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Midnight Run & Winter Fun!

Me with the A team on a training run. George & Roxy are in lead.

Larry with the B team, Pansy & Zoey in lead

Larry's team: Odessa, Zoey, Daisy, Dee Dee, Susie, Rosie, Pansy & Zeus

My team: Roxy, George, Poppy, Franklin, Curlin, Fender, Manny & Smarty

Ana even ran her team: Tefa & Liddell. She is a natural on the sled and does the entire run by herself now. I get a kick out of listening to her give all the commands.

Poppy, a yearling that will be running with the main team. He is George's son and will be "rookie of the year" like his dad was.

Roxy, a 2 year old female that will be leading my team. She is SUPER in lead!!

It seems like we have been training FOREVER since Tahquemenon due to the Beargrease getting canceled. I can't believe the Midnight Run is finally here!! Our winter here has been terrible. It has been an endless cycle of disapointment. We would finally get snow, get a couple of runs in, then EVERY Monday it would RAIN!! This is not good because it turns our trails and dog yard into a skating rink, making it unsafe to take teams out. Sooooo....we have been forced to truck our teams to a safer trail for 4 weeks now. We have never in 12 years in the sport had to truck our dogs this much. Not only is it much harder, but it takes all day to get our runs in and adds much more work! To top it off, after our last warm up, even our safe trail was in terrible condition, so we were forced to take the snowmobile out and make a new trail through the woods where there was still good snow and wasn't heavily traveled by snowmobiles. The trail isn't very long, it takes 7 laps to get an 11 mile run in. So, you can imagine my extreme boredom!! It is all we can do, so it is better than nothing. I am more than excited to run a new trail this weekend and NOT have to do a bunch of laps! The dogs will probably be relieved if we never have to see our little trail ever again!! The Midnight Run is a 90 mile race that starts in Marquette, runs to Chatham for a 5 hour layover, then we finish in Munising. Due to lack of snow, we are only doing a "ceremonial" start for the sponsors & fans in Marquette Friday night. Then we will load our dogs, head to Chatham for the restart. We will leave the chute between 10-11 pm Friday night for a 50 mile run back to Chatham, where we will have our 5 hour layover. Then in the morning we will run 35-40 miles to the finish in Munising. We leave for the race tomorrow morning. To follow our race go to our website, click on our kennel name and go to races: 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Race Season Has Begun!!!!

Well, it's been over 7 months since I updated this blog. One word to describe how we've been.....BUSY!!! We survived a painfully snowless December and FINALLY got a nice amount of snow last weekend. We only have a handful of runs of the sled, but it's better than nothing! Many areas in the mid-west STILL don't have snow and we are going to be very disapointed if some of our races get canceled. After 4 months of training/conditioning the dogs our first race, The Tahquamenon Country Sled Dog Race is finally here this weekend!!! Larry and I are both entered in the 8 dog pro, 42 mile race. Check race updates at: It starts Saturday morning. We are excited to get on the trail and see alot of our musher friends! I'll update when we return! A HUGE THANK YOU to our sponsors for helping us get to the starting line: Manmat, Northwood Land Company and the Powerhouse Gym!!!!! We could not do it without you!!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

 Spring Projects and PUPPIES!!!!!

Ana & her cousin Maddie playing in the new dog house opening Larry built for the new puppies

Maddie, Ana & Makenzie playing with the Slider/Serra puppies

The Elrond/Odessa pups sleeping in their new pen. They are named after places in Alaska: Juneau, Sitka, Willow, Ruby, Dutch, Kodiak and Homer. Pictured above from left to right: Dutch, Juneau, Ruby & Kodiak.

Homer, Kodiak, Dutch, Willow, Ruby, Juneau, and Sitka all squeezed together under the step. We have since built a new step that they can't fit under for safety purposes.

Ruby, Kodiak & Juneau exploring one of their "new" houses. My Grandpa Kelley built this house for our dogs a long time ago. It is looking pretty grim these days. We have repaired it a lot over the years because I just don't have the heart to throw it out. Plus, the dogs love it!

This is Juneau. She is so beautiful!! She gets her picture taken alot. She looks like her older sister Fender, who is the best female in our kennel. I hope she takes after her in the future as well.

Dutch & Juneau trying to escape!

Odessa's pups sleeping on their new steps

Ruby, Juneau and Homer wishing they were a little bit bigger!

Me & Kodiak

The entire Odessa litter. From left to right: Sitka (standing on Dutch), Dutch, Homer, Ruby, Juneau, Willow & Kodiak

The Slider/Serra litter. They are named after musical instruments/equipment: Banjo, Bongo, Tuba, Fiddle, Capo, and Cello. Not pictured here is Banjo. He was busy exploring during this photo opportunity.

Bongo resting after a long day of exploring his new digs

Fiddle exploring

Fiddle, Bongo & Banjo (the black/white pup)



Left to right: Dutch, Sitka, Ruby, Juneau and Homer

Ana holding her favorite pup from the Slider/Serra litter, "Banjo", when he was just a few days old

Ana helping her daddy grade the driveway

Pictured above are the new dog houses Larry built inside our garage. We used to have one inside, it leads to a pen outside. We always have our females whelp in here so we can keep a close eye on them from the house & bring the puppies inside often so they get lots of attention. The old house was on its last leg and with 2 litters only 2 weeks apart, it was time to build 2 new houses inside & 2 bigger pens outside. Also note that the entire project was built with wood we recycled. It was going to be thrown away so we put it to good use.

This is the pen on the outside. This doorway leads into the doghouse that is in our garage. I love it!! It has made caring for these 2 litters much easier!!

The two new pens. Serra is sticking her head out of her new house watching her pups. There is also a doghouse in each pen on the outside so the puppies have another spot to get out of the weather. It takes them a couple of weeks to be able to use the stairs to the garage house.

Sitka, Kodiak, Juneau & Homer (left to right)

Serra resting in our office with her pups. This was her home for 2 weeks while she waited patiently for Larry to finish her new house & pen.

Ana recently had her first gymnastics show. She was so proud & so are we!!

We have had a very busy spring with puppies and projects!! I thought we would get a break after our race season, but I guess spring & summer is the time to get things done before training starts up again. We are done with most of the things we were going to get done like spring cleaning the kennel,  the garage, the barn and building two new pens and houses. Next on the list is getting our dog trailer ready to sell & building a bigger one. I swore I would never build another one after last time, but we are going to again!! We have finally agreed on the design of the new one and we are very excited to start this gigantic project.

Odessa's pups are growing so fast and are already 7 weeks old. Serra's puppies are also doing great and will be 5 weeks old this Saturday. We have started going on puppy walks with Odessa's litter and soon will do the same with Serra's. Then, it will be time for them to stretch their legs a bit more and chase the four wheeler. I love this part of puppy training! It is a blast!

We are really looking forward to Memorial weekend. Larry has 3 days off, which he is really looking forward to. I can't wait for garage saling, BBQ's and seeing friends & family. Hope you all have a wonderful holiday weekend:)