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Mentor List: USA - Alaska

Updated: 06 February 2015

Go to USA State Listing | Go to Country Index


Beginner's Page | Recommended Reading | Hands-On Learning


Name: Jack Berry
Hometown:
Homer, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail
Will mentor in:
distance and general
E-mail address:
doghouse@xyz.net
Experience: I'm interested in long distance racing. I've competed in the Yukon Quest and Iditarod for the last 8 years. I live and train on the Kenai Peninsula. My dogs are Alaskan Huskies.


Name: Bryan Bearss
Hometown:
Anchorage, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
E-mail address:
 musherbryan@yahoo.com
Phone: 906-350-4363
Experience: 2 years of sprint mushing followed up by 8 years of distance mushing. Have handled or run most mid and long distance races in Alaska and have learned the trade from some of the best: King, Steer and Bundtzen. I'm a teacher by trade, so mentoring is right up my alley!


Name: Charlie Champaine
Hometown:
Salcha, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
sprint and general
E-mail address:
champain@ptialaska.net
Phone:
907-488-3087
Experience:
I've had sled dog experience since 1970. I have numerous first place finishes in all major Alaska races.  In addition I have also won the I.S.D.R.A gold metal in the open sprint class. For 22 years I've produced and marketed premium perishable and freeze dried meat diets for competitive teams. Unfortunately I'm miserable typist, but I'll try.


Junior MentorJunior Mentor
Name:
Kristen Crain
Hometown:
Talkeetna, AK
Will mentor by: 
email and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
E-mail address:
choctawdogmusher@yahoo.com
Experience:
I started mushing in 1997 with two retired dogs. I now have a team of freighting Alaskan Huskies, a hound mix, and two racing dogs. I ran the Jr. Iditarod in 2007, and will be running it again in 2008.


Name: Zoya DeNure
Hometown:
Paxson, AK
Will mentor by:
email
Will mentor in:
distance, sprint and general
E-mail address:
zdenure@yahoo.com
Experience:
Home is 42 Alaskan Huskies and 3 spoiled & silly house dogs. I have 5 years of mushing experience ranging from Sprint racing a 4-dog class & mid-distance running 10 & 12 Alaskan Huskies. Logging 1,880 hours average per season with eyes on Iditarod 2006. Part of dog training I enjoy the most would be time camping out with my dogs on trapline trails & training for the races with a natural method we call Hyper-T training.


Name: Cathy & Tom Dimon
Hometown:
North Pole, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
recreation
E-mail address:
dimonfreightdogs@hotmail.com
Phone: 907-347-1682
Experience: We have 14 years experience in recreational mushing & winter camping with 6 - 8 dog teams of large freighting huskies.


Name: Curtis & Shannon Erhart
Hometown:
Fairbanks, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, sprint and general
E-mail address:
cserhart@acsalaska.net
Phone: 907-479-0516
Experience: Curtis and I have been involved in sled dogs for over 30 years each. We have Alaskan Huskies and hound crosses. Have been involved in mostly open class racing, but have extensive knowledge in mid and long distance, limited and junior racing.


Name: Nita Fowler
Hometown: Fairbanks, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in: recreation and general
Email: nitarae@gmail.com
Phone: 907-687-6656
Experience: I have 4 years experience in recreational mushing and operating a tour business for dog sled rides and mushing schools with the old style of Traditional Freighting Huskies. Mary Shields and Cathy Dimon were kind enough to take me under their wings when I first moved to Alaska. I'd be happy to pass it forward.
Suggestions:


Name: Leigh Gilburn
Hometown:
Bethel, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
recreation and general
E-mail address:
lgill270@yahoo.com
Phone: 907-543-1663
Experience: I have about 8 years experience and am moving to International Falls, MN in October. I am very interested in helping even mildly handicapped kids to get into the sport or benefit from working with the dogs/care/etc..


Name: Dori Hollingsworth
Hometown:
Seward, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
sprint and general questions
E-mail address:
dori@gci.net
Phone: (907) 224-3961
Experience: We have been running dogs for 12 years now. We run 4, 6, 8, 10 & open class sprint teams. For a long time our specialty was the six dog class. I once had a 6-dog team that won every race for two years including Tok Race of Champions & the Limited North American Championship. We now focus more on putting together a nice open team although I still enjoy a really nice six or eight dog team. I also really like working with puppies & young dogs. I was fortunate to have a couple of wonderful mentors in Bill Sullivan and Bill Taylor. They kept us from a lot of mistakes. Every year it seems I learn a little more.


Name: GB Jones
Hometown: Knik, AK
Will mentor by: e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation, skijoring, sprint and general
E-mail address: gbjones@iditarodmusher.com
Phone: 907-715-1226
Experience:
Our kennel is located at the trailhead of the wilderness section of the Iditarod sled dog race. My dogs and I are are Iditarod veterans and are active throughout the year giving sled dog rides on the Iditarod Trail. (www.iditarodmusher.com/)


Name: Linda Joy
Hometown:
Kenai, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
E-mail address:
lindajoy@gci.net
Experience: I have run The Iditarod 4 times: '96 ',97, '98 and '99.   Have run many mid-distance races finishing in the top third. Began mushing from the ground up working for various Iditarod mushers prior to owning and running my own team. Have experience as a doghandler, musher, and Puppy Team Trainer (for Dean Osmar).  I do not own dogs at present but am active helping others, Timmy Osmar, Jon Little, and other Kenai Peninsula mushers train their teams this year. I am on the Board for the Tustemena 200 and am on the Rules Committee. Have worked checkpoints on several races as well as being an Official on some races.


Name: Fritz Kirsch
Hometown: Fairbanks, AK
Will mentor by:
phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
Phone:
(907) 488 2273
Experience:
I have a historical record with Animal Science. I have been long distance mushing for 20 years. I would love to teach students about mushing and loving the Alaskan sport of dog mushing.


Name: Eric Lanser
Hometown:
Salcha AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
sprint and general
E-mail address:
elanser@ptialaska.net
Phone: (907) 488-5371
Experience:
I have been racing the better part of twenty years and run open class sprint races with Alaskan Huskies with some hounds.


Name: Bob McAlpin
Hometown:
Fairbanks, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
E-mail address:
bobmcalpin@hotmail.com
Experience: I have trained dogs for over 45 years (sled dogs for 30 years). My passion is developing pups into leaders that you can drive anywhere. My basic bloodlines are from my friend, George Attla, with some other top winning mid -distance lines mixed in.


Name: Judy Merritt
Hometown:
Moose Pass, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
E-mail address:
merrittpscooper1@gmail.com
Phone: 907-288-3188
Experience:
I have participated in the Iditarod 3 times so far 2002 -2005 -- hope to run again in 2012. I've only been running sled dogs for 16 years and still have a lot to learn. I currently operate a kennel of 50 Huskies and several rescue dogs. I enjoy running my dogs for the adventure and would love to help others where I can to become involved in this wonderful sport of sled dogs.


Name: Larisa Myers-McCoin
Hometown:
Talkeetna, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation, skijoring, sprint and general
E-mail address:
lmyers@mtaonline.net
Experience: I have 32 years experience in sprint, distance and recreation (working on a homestead, with the dogs pulling in all the cabin logs, water and all the supplies). I have started a 4-H dog mushing program. Currently have 5 students that are racing in the junior races. One junior training for the Jr. Iditarod and Jr.Quest. I myself have ran the Jr. Iditarod and many sprint races.


Name: Lynn Orbison 
Hometown:
Two Rivers, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
recreation, sprint and general
E-mail address:
daisyacres@mosquitonet.com
Phone: 907-488-9685
Experience:
I'm a sprint musher who is switching over to foster dogs from the shelter and I'm learning to go slower! I've trained bird dogs and bassets to pull, I currently have about 25 dogs. 4 retired, 1 pup, 8 Frost-Lowry hand-me-downs, 8 shelter dogs--most of whom are available for adoption to the right person. I'm currently planning on racing in the 4- 6- and maybe 8-dog classes.


Name: Roy Perry
Hometown:
Tok, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
sprint and general
E-mail address:
takalek@aptalaska.net
Phone: (907) 883-3647
Experience:
I have extensive experience in the professional sprint mushing field. Primarily in the limited classes with with Alaskan Huskies of various bloodlines. I currently maintain a kennel of 50 or so dogs.


Name: Eric Rogers
Hometown:
Eagle River, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
E-mail address:
eorogers@gci.net
Phone:
907.696.3133
Experience:
I have 6 years experience driving dogs with the goal of distance racing.  While far from an expert, I am willing to share what I know.    Before the sled dog bug bit, I was involved in obedience competition and instruction and have an avid interest in dog behavior. I am a firm believer that the biggest challenge and biggest rewards come from working with the part of the dog between the ears. The absolute joy that comes from working with a well trained and bonded dog, a dog that you know and knows you so well you almost seem to read each others mind, is incredible. I doesn't make any difference what you train - mushing, hunting, herding, search and rescue, obedience, whatever. If you are willing to invest yourself and your time to just a fraction of what the dog brings to the table, you will reap the rewards.


Name: Mike Santos
Hometown:
Cantwell, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance
E-mail address:
info@wolfsdenkennel.com
Phone:
907-768-2700
Experience:
I have been training sled dogs for distance races for 20 years. You can learn more about me and my dogs on my website www.wolfsdenkennel.com  


Name: John Schultheis
Hometown:
Wasilla, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail and in person
Will mentor in:
sprint
E-mail address:
johnheatherpointers@hotmail.com
Experience:
I am 18 years old but have 18 years experience. I have been training and racing since I could stand. Every dog in my kennel has German shorthair pointer in their blood line. I breed and train for speed and loyalty. I would be willing to share my knowledge with anyone interested in sprint mushing.


Name: Michael Suprenant
Hometown:
Chugiak, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance and recreation
E-mail address:
Suprenant1@aol.com
Phone:
907-830-5903
Experience:
My team is primarily Alaskan Huskies that I've raised from pups. I have been mushing for 5 years and a volunteer for the Iditarod for 8 years. I have completed the Sheep Mountain 150, the Knik 200 and plan on running the 2007 Iditarod. I have 28 dogs and puppies that are all great.


Name: Jim Uhl
Hometown:
Wasilla, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
recreation, sprint and general
E-mail address:
uhldwm@mtaonline.net
Phone: (907) 376-2789
Experience:
I started running dogs in 1969 in California with Siberian Huskies. In 1975 I moved to Tanana, Alaska and got into village dogs, Alaskan Huskies. In 1977 I moved to Knik, Alaska, and actively raced, as well as held office with the Aurora Dog Mushers Club. I have also worked with the Knik Jr. Dog Mushers and am one of the founding adult members of the Jr. Iditarod and served on their Board for 18 years. My primary background was in sprint or speed racing in limited and open class locally in California, Tanana, and Knik, as well as Big Lake, Alaska area. I got too derned old and fat to run competitively several years ago, but I am more than willing to assist any new musher that I am able to by e-mail, phone or in person.


Name: David Waller
Hometown:
Palmer, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail
Will mentor in:
distance and general
E-mail address:
dog_musher@hotmail.com
Experience:
I have four years of experience in long distance mushing. Distance was what I training for, and ran. We ran Alaskan Huskies, and I usually ran 12 dog teams, but ran anything from 8 up.


Name: Norma Warner
Hometown:
Wasilla, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail, phone and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
E-mail address:
normar_w@hotmail.com
Phone:
907-357-0740
Experience:
I have 10 years experience mushing, this includes limited sprint, tours, and long distance racing.


Name: Beth Wheeler
Hometown:
Talkeetna, AK
Will mentor by:
e-mail and in person
Will mentor in:
distance, recreation and general
E-mail address:
eewheeler@yahoo.com
Experience:
I have 15 years experience with freight hauling dogs. My first 10 years of driving dogs was above the Arctic Circle using them to haul wood, water and supplies. My team saved my life by bringing me home after I got hypothermic at -50F, tied myself to the sled and blacked out. I came to 2 1/2 miles and 20 minutes later in my yard with the dogs wrapped around me warming me.

My dogs and I participated in Col Norman Vaughan's Serum '25 Run in 2000 which goes from Nenana to Nome. The team was honored by Col Vaughan Driving them down Front Street and under the Arch in Nome. I have been honored to travel with the Serum Run a total of 3 times and have guided an Italian team and film crew a 4th time on the Serum Run trail.

My dogs range in size from 45 to 90 lbs. I prefer the freight dogs because they tend to be more mellow than race dogs. They are extremely powerful and 5 dogs can haul 400lbs and are hard to stop...yet very gentle. 8 yr. old kids have driven my team and the last two years I have been lucky enough to mentor a Jr Musher who has participated with them in Jr races in Alaska. (She has won 2 red lanterns).

I would be happy to mentor and or share my team with anyone who approaches dogs with a humble attitude, considers the dogs safety first and their own second. My view on dogs is 8 little minds all working at the same time not necessarily towards the same goal.


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