a note to the copperdog 150

I teared up a lot this past Sunday. maybe it’s because I was as tired as a dog (get it??) Maybe because I couldn’t find any more burritos in my car. Possibly because I had a throbbing leg from getting hit by a dogsled (still do, and still totally my fault). Maybe it’s because I was emotionally fragile from choosing live music, whiskey, and friends over sleep for multiple days. Or maybe it was just because I’m the one who already cries at commercials for cat food and loses it every time I mention my daughter. Most likely, it was D – all of the above. And all of it is underlined by witnessing the power of community this past weekend. A dogsled race of this magnitude, and with this level of prestige isn’t pulled off by a dedicated few. It takes a village. And literally the villages of Calumet, Eagle River, Eagle Harbor, and Copper Harbor. I’m continually humbled by the support I get as an individual, and I’m witness to random acts of kindness – not for the sake of karma – but because that’s just how this collective community operates. We rely on each other, we’re kind to each other, we offer up our best skills and resources, and we are unified around a common mission. There’s a parallel to draw here. and the answer is “yes.” of course we can all be selfless and united – as individuals, as a community, as… you get the point. Thank you for being this model in action. It’s an amazing weekend that has been successfully pulled off for almost a decade. I’m honored have been and to continue to be a part of it. Thank you CopperDog. Here’s my annual list of thank-yous:

  • the trail crew for always having my back in the woods
  • race director Foss whose complete direction to me was “just do your voodoo magic”
  • NetControl for the 800MHz radios that kept us connected in the middle of nowhere
  • Zik’s for the beer and atmosphere
  • the Pines for the cabin I crashed in after all the beer and all the atmosphere
  • the trio of slightly intoxicated instagram fans in calumet who called me an idol
  • Boone and 5th & Elm for the veggie burritos that kept me alive for a day
  • Marine Corps Keweenaw Detachment #1016 who made me feel unusually patriotic
  • Keweenaw Coffee Works who made me a pour-over at the Sunday finish
  • 2nd shooter Erin who selflessly kept me company, hauled my shit, and worked photo
  • the sheriff’s dept, state police, and every volunteer firefighter for keeping us all safe
  • Kelly at the Eagle Harbor Inn who woke me up in the morning with coffee
  • the lady at the road crossing who gave a bio for every team that passed through
  • race marshall Sharon who brought me coffee (see the theme here?) and hugs
  • rockstar musher Martha Schouweiler (4th) who let me feel like a peer as we talked strategy
  • to the fireworks guy who let those things explode 65′ off the ground. super photogenic.
  • Maddie, Doug, and Foss who let me briefly break down on the trail over a shared tragedy
  • every smiling kid who thought this was the equivalent of the Indy 500
  • every smiling, high-fiving musher who also thought it was the Indy 500 (it kind of is….)
  • every single person wearing dayglo or a bib that said “volunteer” or “official.” just wow.
  • and every dog that licked, pawed, chewed on or nosed me

I’m sure there are people I’m forgetting, but that’s okay – because we’ll do this all again next year. Here are some of my favorites from the weekend. Many more on the CopperDog facebook gallery.

By |2018-03-09T13:34:57+00:00March 8th, 2018|photoshoots|2 Comments


  1. Jenny Evans March 8, 2018 at 6:50 pm

    You sound like your Dad when he was following the Sunseeker. Humble but proud. Love that you are passionate about this, and loved the pictures!

  2. Brian Rendel March 9, 2018 at 8:49 am

    …and here’s to our philosopher photog with great gear and even greater perception — visual, spatial, social, situational — willing to endure what must be endured to make it so, then poetically share word and image to make us all richer with what matters. Thank you Adam!

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