The first question people usually ask about our kennel is "Why do you call it Broken Runner Sled Dog Kennel?  That's so depressing."  Well, when Erin did her first Norman Vaughan Serum Run back in 2002 and now again in 2007 she broke not one, but both of her sled runners.  With the help of others on the expedition and folks along the trail, she was able to get all the way to Nome using her sled with the broken runners.

The original kennel, Windy Acres Sled Dog Kennel, got its start in Palmer, Alaska in 1997.

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Broken Runner Sled Dog Kennel - January 2005 - Photo Courtesy of Alan Langworthy

How It All Started

In 1996 Erin took her mom dog mushing for a Christmas present.  Erin enjoyed it so much she took Paul mushing for Valentine's Day and they both volunteered for the 1997 Iditarod. 

After Paul's mushing experience he made the mistake of saying, "Boy, I'd like to do that someday."  Well, if you know Erin she never takes those statements lightly, especially if they involve animals.  So, 6 weeks later they had bought a small piece of land with an even smaller "house" on it and Erin told Paul, "Ok, we are going to get dogs and we are going to get 8!"  Again, if you know Erin she can be a little pushy when it comes to animals.  Paul told her they were only going to get 3 dogs to start!  Erin then told him again that 3 dogs couldn't pull his tall body around and she compromised at the number 5.  Well, that first winter in 1997 they had 12 (yes, you read that right - 12!) and by the next summer they had 21! 

Today, the kennel is located in Willow, Alaska (about 65 miles north of Anchorage) and consists of 41 racing/training Alaskan Huskies (sled dogs), one 6 year old who is still trying to figure out if she is a sled dog, 2 completely "retired" sled dogs that make sure all the young dogs are doing their job, 4 teenagers who are just happy being themselves and 4 more house dogs.  That makes a total of 52 dogs and 2 cats! 

Broken Runner Sled Dog Kennel - December 2009