If he could have, Dan Kaduce would have scratched on the last leg of the Yukon Quest trail, according to a Quest media release.
The veteran musher didn’t arrive until 4:30 p.m. He was expected at 10 a.m.
It took him more than 19 hours to cover a distance most do in about 12.
Kaduce’s troubles began five hours outside Braeburn in a deep section of overflow.
He was leading his seven-dog team through the water in the dark and, when he got to the other side, discovered one of his dogs was missing.
He searched for hours for Extra, but in the dark he couldn’t see any dog tracks.
Finally, he saw a pair of glowing eyes.
Both Kaduce and Extra were soaked, so he lit a fire to warm them up.
Several hours later, he hooked up his team and started slogging toward Whitehorse again.
He’d lost six hours.
Then, Kaduce hit another section of overflow.
This time, he was dragged into it on his side. The lighter in his breast pocket got soaked, hampering efforts to build a second fire. But, eventually, he was successful.
By this time, Jean-denis Britten, who left Braeburn five and a half hours behind Kaduce, caught up to him.
He passed Kaduce and spent more than an hour getting his dogs through the water.
The Whitehorse rookie then built a fire on the other side of the overflow to warm up his team.
Soaking wet, Kaduce arrived in Whitehorse in eight the place, an hour ahead of Britten.
When Britten arrived, he told the finish-line crowd nobody behind him would be getting their dogs through the rising overflow without carrying them, according to the release.