BIG LAKE (AP) -- Trail conditions have forced organizers of the Klondike 300 sled dog race to change the course of the race.
The 300-mile race normally is run from the Klondike Inn to Petersville, but the destination this year will be Finger Lake. The length of the race remains the same.
Race secretary Bob Spears said the switch was made because even though there is enough snow around Petersville, there is running water under the snow.
''We can't be running the dogs on that,'' he said Sunday.
Ten mushers have paid their $450 entry fees to compete in the race from Jan. 20-21. Last year's purse was $11,200 with a first-place prize of $4,800.
Spears said interest in the race is particularly strong this year because mushers are afraid they won't get in enough races to qualify for the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in early March. An earlier qualifier was postponed because of warm weather, he said.
Iditarod mushers Rick Mackey of Nenana and Mark May of North Pole have signed up to run the race. Last year's winner was Charlie Boulding of Manley. Aaron Burmeister of Nome came in second.
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