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  1. #1
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    Iditarod Trail Invitational 2019 - Feb 24

    Check out the footage on the front page.
    ITI iditarodtrailinvitational.com


    Ice blew out away from shore a lot in Norton Sound from Jan 28th to 31th.

    Iditarod Trail Invitational 2019 - Feb 24-sea-ice-norton-sound-jan-31-2019.jpg

    Sea Ice - Norton Sound - January 31, 2019

    On Feb 4th, it looks like it's been blowing back in very close to shore along the Sound and into Norton Bay, while it was under cloud cover. We'll see more when a clear day's sat images get posted.

    The Ice Office (https://www.weather.gov/afc/ice) shows the ice packing in towards shore/ice, with New Ice to the North & East against First Year Medium up in Norton Bay, which is tight to the South, East & North Shore through to near Elim, and New Ice against shore from Unalakleet going North almost to Shaktoolik. And the formerly open water South of Golovin in Golovnin Bay is showing as Young Ice. It's also showing open water along the East shore of Golovnin Bay. I don't know how accurate their drawing of the ice is. It's been off close to shore in past years.

    Iditarod Trail Invitational 2019 - Feb 24-sea-ice-stage-feb-5-2019.jpg

    Sea Ice Stage - Feb 5, 2019

    Does anyone know if there's been confirmation of this year's route?
    Last edited by Canoe; 2 Weeks Ago at 10:58 PM.
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  2. #2
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    It's Golovin
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  3. #3
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    The ice around Golovin (the town) and Golovnin (the bay) are ephemeral at best, coming and going with every swing of the wind. The route cuts across the peninsula E of Golovnin Bay, and then hugs the E shore (right against earth) all the way into Golovin. It does this because of the ephemeral nature of the ice to the south of where the route intersects. People that flirt with that ice edge die.

    All that said? The race doesn't start for ~3 weeks, and it'll take most racers another 10-15 days to get to where you're highlighting. AND the ice changes daily. Much ado about nothing at this point.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    It's Golovin
    I have no idea how I did that, as I went to a map to confirm.
    And saw that the bay is different from the town.
    I don't think I can blame this one on spellcheck.
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  5. #5
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    World View link
    https://worldview.earthdata.nasa.gov/
    won't open unless you first go to
    https://earthdata.nasa.gov/
    yrmv

    Ice Desk
    https://www.weather.gov/afc/ice

    FAA Aviation Weather Cameras
    https://avcams.faa.gov/
    Last edited by Canoe; 1 Week Ago at 01:38 PM.
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  6. #6
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    Feb 10, 2019

    Iditarod Trail Invitational 2019 - Feb 24-golovin-feb-10-2019-wet-ice-34f.jpg
    Golovin, ice looks wet, yup, 34F

    Iditarod Trail Invitational 2019 - Feb 24-shaktoolik-feb-10-2019-35f.jpg
    Shaktoolik 35 F

    Unalakleet 35 F
    Elim 33 F
    Nome 31 F
    Crazy on this ship of fools...

  7. #7
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    Crazy ain't it?
    Last edited by Jayem; 1 Week Ago at 09:31 AM.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  8. #8
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    Reread mikesee's post. That slushy slop will very likely turn to concrete when the temperature plummets. Jan.-Feb thaws are fairly common up there. The sea ice issue in Golovnin Bay will keep things interesting. It's supposed to be an adventure, right?
    Veni vidi velo!

  9. #9
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    Nome forecast: Single digit highs this week. Intermittent snowfall. As the race start day approaches, temps are supposed to climb into the mid-20s (highs) with lows in the single digits to low teens. Occasional light snowfall predicted.

    Conditions as the racers get to the coast are anyone's guess. And forecasts in western Alaska are little better than guesses anyway.
    Veni vidi velo!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by veloborealis View Post
    Reread mikesee's post. That slushy slop will very likely turn to concrete when the temperature plummets. Jan.-Feb thaws are fairly common up there. The sea ice issue in Golovnin Bay will keep things interesting. It's supposed to be an adventure, right?
    Could go any way, hard to say, I was referring to our temps here and how it's unseasonably warm. I rode last evening without pogies on, it's usually a bit colder. As long as the snow stays snow, I'm happy though.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    Could go any way, hard to say, I was referring to our temps here and how it's unseasonably warm. I rode last evening without pogies on, it's usually a bit colder. As long as the snow stays snow, I'm happy though.
    Copy that, Jayem. I knew what you were referring to. My comments were mostly aimed at Canoe

    Are you doing the ITI, Canoe, or know someone who is?
    Veni vidi velo!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by veloborealis View Post
    Copy that, Jayem. I knew what you were referring to. My comments were mostly aimed at Canoe
    Are you doing the ITI, Canoe, or know someone who is?
    That's something I'll never make it to.
    I just know a few riders through PMs shared here about the race.

    Starting in 2015, I started following the live online tracks. So as I discovered various sources across the net, I started posting updates on the race, including sat images, the ice desk, faa met data & cams, and the web cam on the fininsh in Nome. I also post the source links, and links to online posts that cover the real stories, and others post to provide context, answer questions, and they tend to post the stories or links they find too.
    As I did last year,
    https://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/id...a-1069355.html
    https://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/id...l#post13598385

    I do have to sleep, but I try to catch each finish on the Nome web cam. Sometimes I'm successful.
    https://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/id...l#post13581059
    And I try to post when someone is close to the finish, for those who can get to the finish or can watch the web cam.

    If I'm really lucky, I catch someone on the faa cams, but they're just snapshots, not live video, so the yield is very low. I'm usually sitting here going arrrrgh, they're past the cam without a snap. I sure wish those were live streamed...
    https://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/id...l#post13582629
    For example, that cam is aimed higher this year, so very unlikely at that cam.

    What you posted isn't new to me, but is likely interesting to others. Through the various reports, I've 'seen' the ice change each year, often day to day. One illustration of changing ice we have is at this post
    https://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/id...l#post13577400
    Clouds don't always cooperate for the sat images, but here's another example.
    https://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/id...l#post13579991

    I just post what is reported/observed. As I did above. People look at that and provide context & meaning, as happened above.
    Crazy on this ship of fools...

  13. #13
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    Canoe, thanks for setting the stage for an often overlooked event. Nice to have all this information in one thread.

    I briefly dreamed of doing the ITI when I lived in Nome. Then I did an out and back 140-mile ride on a fatbike in relatively good conditions. I didn't even want to look at my bike for two weeks after that. For a week I couldn't have ridden it even if I had wanted to. Quickly realized that I would never have the discipline to train enough to make this a reality. Nothing but respect for anyone who takes this on.
    Last edited by veloborealis; 1 Week Ago at 07:49 AM.
    Veni vidi velo!

  14. #14
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    I can't recall ever seeing this on the cam at White Mountain.
    A band of freeze-thaw next to shore.
    Right along where the dog sleds run next to shore (just out of frame on the lower right).
    Iditarod Trail Invitational 2019 - Feb 24-white-mountain-feb-12-2019.jpg
    White Mountain school cam - February 12, 2019
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  15. #15
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    So you're not going to mention that tornado in the upper left corner!!!
    Gettin' Fat!...That's Where It's At!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canoe View Post
    I can't recall ever seeing this on the cam at White Mountain.
    A band of freeze-thaw next to shore.
    Right along where the dog sleds run next to shore (just out of frame on the lower right).
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	White Mountain Feb 12, 2019.jpg 
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    White Mountain school cam - February 12, 2019
    Overflow, most likely. For the unitiated: The ice on the Fish River should still be frozen a few feet thick. Barometric pressure changes/gradients can force water up through cracks in the ice, where it flows or stands on top of the ice, sometimes hidden by snow cover. Don't know about during winter, but in summer there also is a mild tidal influence on the Fish up river about as far as White Mountain .
    Veni vidi velo!

  17. #17
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    Jay posted his setup for this year on FB.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  18. #18
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    I think it is pretty common this time of year for the sea ice at Golovin, Elim, and Koyuk to "blown out" or have a ton of water wash over it. The ITI racers will not get there for a long time, and so long as they stay with the dogs, it is generally pretty safe, as the iditarod takes a pretty conservative route.

    There are overland options between Koyuk, Elim, and Golovin, and I believe there is an overland route around Golovin Bay, but I haven't actually seen it. Generally the overland options all suck, as instead of going across flat sea ice you have to go up and down tons of little hills.

    The iron dog folks say Unalakleet river is open near town - hopefully that will all freeze up nicely making for a fast ride!

    The sea ice leading into Golovin last year:
    ITI 2018 by J C, on Flickr

    And in 2017:
    Golvin sea ice by J C, on Flickr



    The sea ice out side Elim in 2016:
    DSC04697 by J C, on Flickr

    The Unalakleet river a few miles outside of town, from 2016
    DSC04528 by J C, on Flickr

    (sorry for the flickr spam, I am too lazy to clean up the BBcode that flickr's link widget includes and remove all the links )

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by spruceboy View Post
    I think it is pretty common this time of year for the sea ice at Golovin, Elim, and Koyuk to "blown out" or have a ton of water wash over it. The ITI racers will not get there for a long time, and so long as they stay with the dogs, it is generally pretty safe, as the iditarod takes a pretty conservative route.
    I have some friends doing the Irondog, their route is entirely over-land in the Norton Sound area. Not risking dumping a machine in water.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    I have some friends doing the Irondog, their route is entirely over-land in the Norton Sound area. Not risking dumping a machine in water.
    I think several years ago one of the iron dog teams tried skipping across golovin Bay and ended up standing on their machine in the middle of the bay, up to thier waist in water and had to be picked up by a boat or some such nonsense. So a all land route makes sense. It will not be a problem for the iti, the dog race should take a very safe route.


    Edit:
    Here is a news account of the accident:

    https://www.adn.com/sports/article/iron-dog-turns-wet-ride-outside-team/2015/02/26/
    Last edited by spruceboy; 6 Days Ago at 11:50 PM. Reason: Link to story

  21. #21
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    https://craigmedred.news/2019/02/11/peace-at-last/

    ...
    By 2015, the Iditasport was already dead and gone, replaced by the same event with a new name the Iditarod Trail Invitational (ITI). But Iditasport played a key role in bringing fatbikes into the main stream, and Iditasport founder Dan Bull cannot be overlooked in this history.
    ...
    Early Alaska fatbikers used to mount the tires to Snocat rims, cut the outward protruding nobs off, and then try to find a mountain bike frame into which they could squeeze the tire.
    ...
    The slowest winning time to McGrath in the last five ITIs is three days and five hours. It used to take the dogs longer. The record time of 1 day, 18 hours and 32 minutes set by John Lackey in 2015 is at least eight hours faster than the fastest time run by any of the super dogs of the modern Iditarod.
    ...
    Crazy on this ship of fools...

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