Northern Blast Sled Dogs

Carol & Alan Pepsick

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Catch Up Time

Posted on July 3, 2013 at 12:45 PM

More than two months since my last posting!!! So the main reason was because I was having some computer problems so accessing the website to make updates would have been a bad idea. The strange thing that came out of this was a decision to upgrade our 8 year-old flip phones (with antenna) to smart phones with a data plan so in the future, if needed, I will have a second source to access the internet with, although I still don't know if I would attempt to update the website from such a small screen. However, I have taken a number of decent pictures and videos with it, as you will see in a mix of photos posted below. (Note: there was so much to post, it took me more than 2 weeks to put this together during which more events occurred that needed posting as well. I hope to never let it go this long again! :o )

So we have hit that time of year where the dogs normally wind down. However, we didn't have much of a season to wind down from but the dogs will still enjoy their typical quiet Spring/Summer break before training starts all over again. Here are some yard pics taken in April and May.

Cheyenne in stalk mode, waiting for one of her sisters to come down the walkway.

Sisters Cheyenne and Nezi.


Lizzy and her Aunt Rosie.

Lead girl Looker.

Orbit on the ground with Faith's head lying between his paws. I think she is sweet on him. Orbit's son Apache standing.

Half- brothers Eagle and Bounder hanging together.


Rosie (front) relaxing with her mom Holly.

Love this pic of Spirit.

Cousins Lizzy and Drew relaxing together.

Spirit (far left) sun bathing with 4 of her daughters: Joy & Looker (grays), Lizzy & Kwyta.

Cree loves to dig.


Funny shot of 4 girls all leaning the same way in the same corner of each of their kennels: Rosie, Nezi, Ana, and Cheyenne.

A little fuzzy, but a cute shot of Alan taking a break from mowing to give Kwyta some pets.

Can you tell who is who? These two are often found hanging out together, grazing, and can be hard to tell apart at night. Look for the white patch on the back of the neck. That's Ana, the other dog is Drew.

I don't know who did this! Cheyenne is playing with a toy ring that someone threaded over the stick.

Apache says hello to Po.

Half siblings Eagle (standing) and Looker.

A bunch of boys, oh, and Looker too.

So what do you get when you mix rain with dirt and a little bit of playtime? This picture of Cheyenne!

Inseparable sisters Spirit and Rosie (photo by Alan).

Midas the cat, seen in the upper right corner, is looking pretty good to this group of girls.

In May the pool came out and so did my new phone. Having fun with the settings on the phone I put together this little video (this video can also be viewed on the Videos page; remember to use the YouTube option on all videos if wishing to view on a larger screen):

Pool Fun!

When picking up my new phone, I asked them to transfer the pictures stored on my old phone onto the new one. This became a difficult technological challenge because of how old my other phone was but they were able to get it done. Here are some fun surprise pics I hadn't looked at in so long from our first litter. I never thought I would see these pics stored on my computer! Wish I would have had a digital camera back then. (Some of these pics are poor quality so I limited the amount that I posted and shrunk most of them down which made them a little less grainy.) :

                             Spirit was a little cutie.

                               Proud mother Holly. I like this pic of her.

                    So cute, Tundra checking out his first dandelion.

                          The 3 muskateers...

.....and again.

                            Spirit looks so small in the igloo.

                              My, what big ears you have Tundra!

  Spirit with an oversized tennis ball.

Rosie has caught some awesome air here, and aiming for Tundra. She was the best jumper of the 3 and still is.

        Rosie, getting bigger.

Typical pose for these 3.

I think this is their first hook up on the drop chain of our first dog truck, just out for a little hike. (Not too long after this picture was taken, this truck was totaled in an accident that Alan was in. He was not hurt nor at fault, and no dogs were in the truck. This is when we upgraded from the Ranger to the F150.)

 Rosie turning into a beautiful girl.

Spirit and Tundra showing off their teenage legs!

         Ahh, the first box on our current truck in progress.

Last pic I took with the old phone and used this one as the wallpaper for the phone, so I saw this picture every day.

It's also project time. In this small window of a couple of months, we try to get a number of chores taken care of so in mid May we received this load of shredded cedar:

This project has kept us busy for a number of weeks spreading it out in each kennel and walkways, and another reason I have not gotten to the website.

Also in mid May we took 9 dogs on a fun trip to Karen's kennel so they could visit and play with their other family members. Here are some pictures:

Malala. This is a very sweet and friendly 6 month old pie bald of Karen's. I could have easily taken her home. Orbit is her half-uncle.

Drew came along on this trip.

All the girls seemed to really like this boy Jig (center). Karen bred Jig but he has a different owner. He just happened to be staying there while his owners were out of town. Here Cheyenne (L) was really pleased that he was there while mother Kwyta is there to monitor what her little girl is up to.

Jig also drew Nezi into his circle and this time Eagle is also there to see what the big deal is.

Cree took a liking to his aunt Opal. Of course, being close to starting her heat cycle certainly helped.

Here poor Opal is sandwhiched between Apache and Cree.

Cool shot of Kwyta (L) and her daughter Nezi.

Cheyenne and Ana giving kisses to their grandpa Weaver who is so much like his son, their father Orbit.

A very social Cheyenne goes in for a hug with grandpa.

Like this pic of Orbit with the tree behind him.

Ana loves chasing her fathr Orbit; but when they aren't running around, hanging out with him is cool too!


After a time, Karen let Yuki into the yard and Cree forgot all about Opal. Yuki is another aunt of his and she was also visiting as her owners were out of town as well.

Fun pic of Karen and fellow musher Sheryl relaxing with a mix of dogs that quickly jelled into a temporary pack.

Apache took a liking to young Malala and sister Nezi is right there seeming to question her brothers intention.

Of course Apache also liked 10 month old CC who is hiding in the cable spool. Yuki comes over to investigate with Cree hot on her heels. I love watching all the interactions.

And, here is a short video clip at Karen's, showing a large mixture of dogs all getting along pretty well. Any grumbling comes from Opal, who was most likely getting close to starting her heat cycle, and the boys - Cree especially, loved her for it (this video can also be viewed on the Video's page):

Visit To The Tumnatki Kennel

Most of June we enjoyed beautiful clear days that weren't too hot. Here are some typical yard pics with the dogs:

It's a shame this pic is a little fuzzy, but still worth posting. Sisters Cheyenne and Ana.

Gorgeous pic of Nezi. She hits this pose often, as precisely as her father.

Very funny! Looks like Lizzy found Drew's tickle spot...

...and Bounder found Alan's.


Cute pick of Cree and Alan.

Ana gives Alan a smooch...

...and Apache tries to give one to his great uncle Tundra...

...and Cheyenne gives her uncle Bounder one. Bounder is so patient with his nephew's and niece's as Apache sneaks up from behind.

Lovely Ana.

There's that great Orbit pose.

Eagle (L) and Apache.

Faith kicking back.

This has become Drew's new favorite spot. I think she was inspired from her visit to Karen's.

Just love Rosie's white eyelashes.

Finding a panaramic setting on my phone was a treat because I love panaramic pictures. This one is of our view from our yard.

This is the small dog yard and part of the large yard.

Ahh, brotherly love. Using the burst setting on my camera I caught Cree just about to munch Apache.

Almost got him. Nice defensive move there Apache. And I am pretty sure Faith, who is lying on the ground, is having a good chuckle as she watches the exchange.

New Addition To The Small Yard:

In the fall we placed the stump on the left in the small yard for the dogs to play on. So now we simply cut another stump down to the same size and attached a piece of plywood across the top and now they have something really fun to play with!

Ana models the new addition.

And Tundra and Bounder seem happy about it.

GROUP HOWL! I captured a one minute video of the dogs singing a chorus for us. This is something we hear every day so I don't think much about it. But then I thought, others might enjoy hearing this as well so here you go. Listen through to the very end for a funny and unexpected finish (this video can also be viewed on the Videos page):

Group Howl

PEACOCKS AND CROWS: Just a couple weeks back we had some issues with some visiting birds. First were the peacocks. Alan came home from work and found them in our yard. I had been hearing them call a few weeks previously so wasn't surprised to hear this and they turned out to belong to our new neighbors. Alan had to shoo them away as they put the dog yard into an uproar and they kept flying around threatening to land in the yard when the dogs were out. If this had happened there would have been nothing we could have done to stop, well a massacre. Here they are, the male's tail is gorgeous:

(photo by Alan)

(photo by Alan)

Cute pic of the pair finally leaving. (photo by Alan)

The next day the girls were all gathered around a cedar tree and looking up. Perched about 12 feet up was a baby crow and about 25 feet up was its mother calling down to it. Unable to fly yet I suppose, it began jumping down one branch at a time until the dogs could stand on their hind legs and were nearly face to face with it. I screamed for Alan's help as I could not get the dogs to leave. Somehow between the 2 of us we got the dogs locked up and the baby was saved but continued to call over and over to its mother. This went on all day. The next day the baby was no longer in the tree but the peacock's returned for another visit! Uhg!!

Another activity that goes on around the dog yard that I don't give much thought to is a snack circle. The dogs gather around me on their best behavior and know they have to sit to get their buscuit. So for those of you who can't imagine such a thing, here is another little video I put together with 11 dogs (this can also be viewed on the Videos page):

Snack Time Video

Karen Ramstead:

A week ago I was thrilled to see Karen Ramstead again. I met her at the 2011 Eagle Cap race. She's a 10 time Iditarod musher and I have been a fan of hers and her Siberian Husky's for some time. Last week she was in Portland giving a 3-hour slideshow presentation and I enjoyed every moment of it as well as a chance to talk with her again at the end and ask a few questions. A perfect and very inspirational way to spend a Saturday afternoon in June and now I am fired up to start fall training!

But wait, there's more!! In August we have another inspirational musher to see as well. Can't wait so stay tuned.

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