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Pagosa Paw Winter Dog sports events this weekend

The Pagosa Nordic Club and Colorado Mountain Mushers will host the first-ever 2011 “Pagosa Paw” Winter Dog sport races this weekend, March 12-13 at the West Fork Nordic Trail.

This two-day race event includes dog sled races, canine cross country skijoring races (dogs pull you on skis) and canine snowshoe cross races (dogs pull you on snowshoes). The canine snowshoe cross is a perfect race for newcomers and beginners.

This is the last Dog sled race of the Colorado Mountain Mushers winter race season. There will be short courses for beginners and serious races for the big dogs, with prizes for all. Race scores are combined over the two-day event in the sportsman and competitive divisions, so bring your dogs out for a doggone good time.

Racing starts at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday at the West Fork cross country ski trailhead, Forest Service Road 648, located 15 miles east on U.S. 160 from Pagosa Springs. Racers and dogs are required to meet at 8:30 a.m. Saturday for race instructions. Pre-registration is required with Call Jennifer at 264-9358 for more information.

All participating and spectating dogs must be friendly and leashed at all times. Extra harnesses are available for beginners; call Jennifer ahead of time.

The Colorado Mountain Mushers was established in 1989. The goals of the club are to foster novice and family racing and other working dog-associated winter sports by organizing a fun racing circuit of professional quality, encouraging new mushers and promoting and fostering the well being of sled dogs.

The Colorado Mountain Mushers are members of Mush with PRIDE. “PRIDE” stands for Providing Responsible Information on a Dog’s Environment. The relationship between sled dogs and humans is one of the oldest bonds of its kind. Modern sled dog owners are proud of their dogs as canine athletes that are bred and trained to do what they love: run as part of a team. Mush with PRIDE supports the responsible care and humane treatment of all dogs and is dedicated to enhancing the care and treatment of sled dogs in their traditional and modern uses.

For more information, visit the website at

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