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March 11, 2019
ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Far from competitors tackling the frozen wilderness in Alaska's Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, a dozen people are holed up inside an Anchorage hotel behind banks of computers, tracking the punishing route and connecting with global fans seeking a real-time link to the off-the-grid sport.
As of Friday, 51 mushers are traveling long stretches between remote village checkpoints with no other company but the dogs pulling their sleds. But they're not competing in a vacuum on the 1,000-mile (1,600-kilometer) trail that spans two mountain ranges and the frozen Yukon River before it heads up the wind-scrubbed Bering Sea Coast to the finish line in the Gold Rush town of Nome.
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