Sunday, February 18, 2007

Maine Snowmobilers Attempt to Ride from Alaska to Maine

Two men from Waterboro, Maine are attempting a 7,000 mile snowmobile trip from Tok, Alaska to Maine. They're also taking a little side trip to north of the Artic Circle.

So far they've covered 1862 miles, facing temperatures of -30 degrees and frozen rivers with six foot ice heaves:

They've also run into mechanical problems that limited them to only nine days of actual riding during the first 36 days of the trip. They faced long waits as replacement parts had to be flown in and ferried to remote locations.

But they say the spectacular landscape and the wonderful people they've met along the route are making their adventure worthwhile.

Memorable people they have met include a hermit who took them in for a meal of caribou and hardtack, a trapper who explained how he runs a line of 100 traps for wolverines and bears and a waitress who inaugurated Wolfinger into the "Sourtoe Club" after he downed a drink said to have a pickled human toe in it.

This ride is similar to one made in 2000 by Mike Ouellette, Kirk St. Peter and Mike McCarthy of Caribou, who covered the 5,977 miles from Tok to northern Maine in 29 straight days of sledding, with no breakdowns or delays.

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