Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!!!!!
Our crazy main team during hookup

Another pic of our crazy team

Larry coming home from taking the main team on a run on Monday

Me running the main team yesterday

Another pic of my team yesterday

my team crusin yesterday
We had a wonderful Christmas with both of our families this year. We also survived our annual Christmas freezing rain by doing BOTH of our long runs with the dogs BEFORE Christmas so we didn't have to worry. I am very glad we did, we were off for a few days because of the icy trail conditions. We really enjoyed our time off and relaxed with our families. It was nice! Now, we are back to work with the dogs, getting them ready for our first race of the year, the Tahquamenon Country Sled Dog Race in Newberry, Michigan. It is next weekend, January 9th. Both Larry and I will run two teams in the 8 dog, 43 miler. We can't wait to get our first race out of the way!! I am always very nervous, until I get out on the trail. If you would like to follow our races this year, go to our website:
and click on "races". We have provided the web links so you can follow us on our journeys. We hope you all have a

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Let it Snow!!!!!!we woke up this morning to yet another snow storm last night, bringing us over 2 feet of snow in all!!

This is Larry running an 8 dog team on the 6th in 10 inches of new snow. This was our first sled runs of the year!
Ana, so happy to have gotten to run "her team"

Ana's team consisted of Windows, our 10.5 year old retired leader (left) and Serra, our 2 year old promising young female out of Strider/Zoey.

We are so excited to finally have gotten a ton of snow! We have run the dogs with sleds twice now. I took my main 10 out for a 20 mile run last night, breaking trail through 18 inches of snow! Surprisingly, they kept an awesome pace and I was very thankful for the extra weight I put in the sled and the new snow to slow the team down. They were on fire! I was standing on the drag mat for the first 8 miles until they finally settled into a nice pace. They really looked good and are exactly where they need to be right now. The only difference I notice from last year's team is the power. Last year's team was powerful, but with 7 of the 10 being big, strong males this year, I could really FEEL how strong they were last night. On the way home, I had Larry go ahead on the snowmachine to make a track up the "huge" hill. This hill is like a ski hill, so I didn't want the team to have to break trail the entire way up it. Well, Larry buried the machine 1/4 of the way up. I yelled "get out of the way", charged past with the dogs, hooked my snowhook into the ski, and called the team up. I really didn't think they'd pull it out. It was REALLY stuck! They surged forward, put their heads down and miraculously hauled, Larry, Ana, me, a sled, and a snowmobile up that gigantic hill. I was so proud of them! After all that work, they still came charging into the driveway and finished happy and rolling around in the snow, wagging their tails. That is what we like to see!
It is Ana's birthday today! I can't belive 5 years have passed so quickly! We are celebrating with cake and subway that Larry is bringing home since it has been so bad out for the last 2 days, Ana and I have been snowed in and haven't left the house. Larry is also taking his team of 12 out for the same 20 miler I did last night. Ana and I will be following on the snowmachine just incase!
We also just created our website. Check it out:

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

DEER CAMP, and you guessed it, MORE TRAINING!!!!!!Larry teaching Ana to play chess at Deer Camp

This is "Deer Camp". If that carpet looks familiar, it was Holiday Inn's carpet in the 80's.

Larry with Eddie (left) and Manny, one of our yearlings that just ran lead for the first time. He did surprisingly well!

Larry's team coming into the driveway

Ana playing with her doll house with "Jake"

Ana showing off her new headlamp! She was so excited to go outside after dark to test it out.

Larry coming home with another team. Zoey (left lead), our super spectacular leader from Doug Swingley and Jackson (right lead). Jackson is a 3 year old main team dog out of Odessa (Swingley) and Elrond (Curtice). Jackson started leading like a super star this year, which we are very excited about!
Well, time continues to fly by. Life and training 2 teams keeps us more than busy. We took 2 whole days off from training to go deer hunting. We stayed the weekend at Deer Camp and had a wonderful, relaxing time. Nobody shot any deer, but it sure was nice getting away for a couple of days. Ana would like to move to Deer Camp permanently. There is no electricity and the wood heat keeps us toasty warm. I could stay out there forever!
Training is going very well. We are still way ahead of last year's mileage. The teams are both looking very strong. We are getting a little sick of the long runs with the four wheeler though. I am looking forward to a HUGE dumping of snow so we can get on sleds. Last year, we were on sleds by Nov. 21st. Not this year. We are supposed to get some snow on Friday. Unfortunatley, it won't be enough for sleds yet. So, we will be doing our 30 miler on the four wheeler. NOT really looking forward to that!
Happy Thanksgiving to all from the Fortier's!!!!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Shaws Etc......Larry and I giving our presentation on our training program.
(photo courtesy of Shannon Miller)
Our crazy team during hookup time at Shaw's training weekend a couple of weeks ago (photo courtesy of Shannon Miller)
Sharon, Lyle and I doing what we like to do best...."talkin dogs!"
(photo courtesy of Shannon Miller)

Dr. Tim checking out Liddell during the rabies clinic
(photo courtesy of Shannon Miller)

This year's litter, now 3.5 months old. They are Billy/Fender. Pictured is Susie (left), Roxy, and Libby.

Dee Dee, another pup from this year's litter

Ana & our Border Collie, Jake E Jake, playing soccer

Me & Jake

Larry & Roxy

Ana and the puppies on our "puppy walk" today

Things are busy as usual here. Notice my last entry was a month ago!! Partly because my camera has been in the shop for that long. I FINALLY have it back and am so excited to take pictures again!! We went to Shaw's annual training session a couple of weekends ago and had a blast, as usual! It is so nice seeing old friends and actually getting to relax and hang out in between training runs. We never get a chance to do that during the races. It is never long enough though, next year we will try and come a day earlier. Our young dogs got a TON of passing practice both days, which is awesome training for our upcoming races. Larry and I also talked about our training program for us as well as the dogs. I was a little nervous, but after I was up there talking about something I LOVE, it wasn't bad at all. Other than dog training, we are just staying busy with Ana, her school, work and getting ready for winter. I can't believe it is already November! We are a bit ahead of our usual training, so that is always a plus. We are hoping that our little "tweaks" will help further our kennel this season. Well, that is all for now. Time to get a team ready to run.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

BEAR CAMP 2009Tahquamenon River

Star (left) and Boston in lead

All our young dogs staked out at camp

Our team on one of the many beautiful trails

Ana, Me and Jake, our Border Collie pup. For the record, he is the ONLY dog my mom EVER let inside the cabin! He was sooo good all weekend!

The boys ready for a run!

A green bug on a leaf

Odessa & Cowgirl sprawled out in the afternoon

Larry evaluating the team after the run

me watering Jackson (left) and Liddell on the run

Larry & Ana fishin'

Fender (grey dog) and Serra, 2 of our most promising young females

Eddie (left) and Prophet leading the team

The team after a run. Jersey (left) and her mom, Zoey in lead

Cigar, our pick of our current yearlings out of Mike Lee & Odessa

Larry and dad building a roof over the front porch

This is a little late. Over Labor Day Weekend, for the 2nd year in a row, we went up to "Bear Camp". It is my dad's cabin in Mcmillan in the U.P. Larry, Ana, me, my mom & Dad and Aunt Sueanne and Uncle Lee all drove up for a spectacular weekend! It is out in the middle of nowhere (really!) on the Taquamenon River, the perfect place for us to be! We took our entire kennel of dogs up also and trained every day. It was so much fun! We also got lots of relaxing time in, which is always a plus! The only thing that sucks, is leaving after a fun filled weekend. We hope to go up again, one more time, before the snow gets here.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Let The Madness Begin!!!!!Larry's team on their 2nd training run. Dana and Star in lead.

My team going up the "big hill". It is almost a mile long and very good training for the dogs.

Dana, one of our most promising leaders and she is only 2!

Ana and Rags, one of our yearlings.

Ana with Fender's pups. They are now 7 weeks old.

Our Border Collie pup (left) getting checked out by Libby and Roxy. Jake's favorite activity is herding the pups.

Ana and Roxy

Ana and I taking a break from stacking wood

Larry and I after we ran our teams. Ana took this picture.
Fall training started for us on Aug. 21st. The temps finally cooled off and we were more than ready to start hooking up dogs! The dogs have been a little nuts the past couple of weeks, so we couldn't wait to run some of that energy out of them. They were amped, but our runs went smoothly, with no equipment malfunctions. Thank goodness!!!
Our basement project has been put on hold for now. We won't have time to get much done until spring. We still hope to get the ceiling and the floor done before we stop working on it for the year.
The pups are now 7 weeks old and growing fast. Ana has made sure they get tons of attention. If we are outside (which is all the time), she is with those pups.
This weekend we are packing up the kennel and going to the U.P. to my dad's cabin for a little R & R and of course, some dog training. We can't wait to get away!! Plus, it is nice that we can take our dogs on vacation with us. We hope everyone has a wonderful Labor Day Weekend!!!!