The 2020 CB300 race route will be ran in reverse!
The 2020 CB 300 Sled Dog Race begins in downtown Glennallen, Alaska, at MP 188 of the Glenn Highway on Saturday morning, January 11th. From the starting line, teams will head east, paralleling the Glenn Highway for approximately two miles, then turn due north at the junction with the Richardson Highway.
Running north while paralleling the Richardson Highway, teams will run ~ 12 miles to the intersection with an Alyeska Pipeline Service road and turn up this to the west. Teams will follow the pipeline road for ~ 5 miles to the pipeline itself. The race trail then proceeds on past the pipe, still heading west for another 7 miles along the Cindy Trail.
At the Cindy Trail junction with the Ewan Lake Trail, teams will head south and onward for ~ 12 miles until its end at the Glenn Highway.
The race trail then turns west and parallels the Glenn Highway for ~ 10 miles to the Tolsona Lake area and the intersection with the East Crosswind Lake Trail. The race trail then follows a northwesterly direction towards Lake Louise, first passing by the northern end of Tolsona Lake, then Moose Lake, and eventually hooking up with the Tolsona Trail over a total distance of ~ 24 miles.
The Lake Louise checkpoint at The Point Lodge is the first checkpoint in the 2020 race. The lodge provides warm lodging and hot food to race participants, spectators, and officials.
From the Lake Louise checkpoint on the southern edge of the lake, the race trail crosses over Lake Louise itself for a distance of just over 3 miles to the lake’s eastern edge. The trail through this next section skirts or crosses over numerous lakes including Crosswind Lake (32 miles before Sourdough) and Fish Lake (19 miles before Sourdough) in a northeasterly direction before reaching the second checkpoint at Sourdough Campground on the banks of the Gulkana River. Total distance between the first and second checkpoint is ~ 55 miles.
The remote Sourdough checkpoint is situated at a roaded access point to the Gulkana River, just off the Richardson Highway at MP 148. The nearby Sourdough Lodge is closed; no food or lodging is available here. However, the checkpoint provides limited warm shelter for race participants and officials.
From the Sourdough checkpoint, the race trail heads north towards the third checkpoint at Meiers Lake Roadhouse, over a distance of ~ 40 miles. Teams will reach Twelvemile Creek at ~ 31½ miles out of Sourdough, then turn eastward after another 1½ miles of travel when intersecting with the Middle Fork Trail. Once on the Middle Fork Trail, teams will travel ~ 7 miles to reach the Meiers Lake checkpoint.
Meier’s Lake Roadhouse offers warm lodging and hot food to race participants, officials, and spectators alike.
The first manned road crossing occurs immediately upon leaving the Meier’s Lake checkpoint and will be highly visible to all oncoming traffic with an established light tower in place (provided by Alyeska) and manned by volunteer flaggers to ensure sled dog team safety.
After crossing the Richardson Highway, the race trail heads overland a total of 68 miles to the fourth checkpoint at Chistochina. The race trail heads east for ~ 1½ miles following an access road to the pipeline, then turns north and parallels the pipeline for ~ 16 miles. At this clearly defined turn in the race trail, teams will leave the pipeline corridor, head east and follow a trail to a crossing of the upper Gakona River, which is ~ 22 miles from the Meiers Lake checkpoint.
Within ~ 3½ miles of the Upper Gakona River crossing, the race trail crosses up and over the Hump (elevation 4,085 feet). The Hump is ~ 41½ miles out of the Chistochina checkpoint. The next notable landmark along the race trail is the crossing of Excelsior Creek, ~ 4½ miles from the Hump and ~ 37 miles out of the Chistochina checkpoint. From Excelsior Creek, the race trail follows the Chistochina River trail ever southeastward until reaching the Chistochina River trailhead just outside of the small community of Chistochina. From here the race trail parallels the Tok Cut-Off Highway to its intersection with Sinona Creek, then along the creek bed and under the highway bridge to the paved bicycle path. From the Sinona Creek bridge and along the bicycle path to the final checkpoint at Red Eagle Lodge is a total distance of ~ 2 miles.
Warm shelter, food, and drink is available both at the checkpoint inside the Red Eagle Lodge (MP 32 Tok Cut-Off Highway) and at Posty’s Sinona Creek Trading Post during regular business hours (MP 35 Tok Cut-Off).
Within one-half mile after leaving the Chistochina checkpoint, the race trail crosses over the second manned road crossing at MP 33 of the Tok Cut-Off Highway. The road crossing is manned by volunteers to ensure safe passage for sled dog teams to the west side of the highway and is marked by a high visibility light tower.
From the road crossing, the race trail parallels the Tok Cut-Off Highway for ~ 30 miles southward toward the small community of Gakona along the historic Valdez to Eagle Trail. Just above Gakona, the race trail drops down off the bluff into the Gakona River valley, losing a quick 360 feet of elevation.
The race trail then spills out onto the Gakona River and follows it ~ 1 mile until passing under the Gakona River bridge, then up onto a riverside trail which parallels the Copper River for ~1 mile. The race trail then turns right and climbs uphill toward the highway and then turns left and parallels the road for ~1 mile toward the junction of the Tok Cut-Off Highway and the Richardson Highway. The race trail will pass by five residential side roads before reaching the junction area, then turn sharply left and southward. Here again the race trail will pass over three residential side roads, as it heads to the Gulkana River crossing and the Native Village of Gulkana.
At the Gulkana River, the race trail crosses under the Richardson Highway bridge from east to west, and then out, paralleling the Richardson Highway while heading south towards the finish line in Glennallen. Total distance from the junction of the Tok Cut-Off Highway and Richardson Highway to the finish line in Glennallen at Old Paths Baptist Church is ~ 14 miles