These Photos From The 1,000-Mile Dog Sled Race Through Alaska Will Melt Your Heart

iditarod musher hugs dog

Photo: REUTERS/Nathaniel Wilder

The 2013 Iditarod started last weekend in Alaska.The race requires one rider (“musher”) and a team of 16 dogs to navigate a sled through 1,000 miles of Alaskan Wilderness from Anchorage to Nome.

The race always produces some incredible photos that capture not only the harshness of the environment, but the enduring spirit that the dogs and humans both embody.

Also, the dogs are cute, if cold.

A musher handler hugs a dog before she starts the long journey

A dog remains upbeat on the second day of the race

A dog plays in the snow before setting out on Day 2

Jamaican musher Newton Marshall waves his flag during the ceremonial start

A lead dog runs so fast his tongue hits him in the eye

A four-time Iditarod winner kisses his dog

Pack dogs wag their tongues

A lead dog streaks down the start line on Day 1

Two lead dogs bash together during Day 2

A fan offers a musher a beer

A musher races along the end of the forest

Dogs fall in line after the Day 2 restart

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