20 year old Yukon Quest veteran
Royal Canin USA, Dogbooties.com
Current Residence: McMillan, MI
Occupation(s): Dog Musher
Kennel Name: Nature's Kennel
Name Origination: Nature's Kennel was named after one of Ed Stielstra's (kennel owner) favorite dogs, a mixed breed named Nature.
Kennel Bloodlines: Stielstra, Berkowitz
Breeds: Alaskan Husky
# of Dogs in Kennel: 150
Musher Question & Answer
How many years have you been running dogs?
Tell us about your dogs?
My main leader during the 2016 Quest, Maple, will return with me for the 2017 race along with 13 very talented 2-4 year old dogs. Most of the team will be traveling the Yukon Quest trail for the first time.
How did you get started running dogs?
My love for the sport started through following the Iditarod as a homeschool project when I was nine. Following this, I started my own kennel at age 14 and then moved to Nature's kennel four years later.
What do you love most about running sled dogs?
The peace, solitude, challenge and most of all the Relationship that is built between human and canines.
Are you a member of any other organizations involved in sled dog sports?
Luce County Mushers, Upper Peninsula Sled Dog Association
Why did you enter the Yukon Quest? What are your goals for the race?
I entered the trail that the Yukon Quest covers, the people associated with it, and the opportunity to cover 1,000 miles with 14 incredible friends. My goals for the 2017 race are to enjoy the journey and finish with a happy and healthy dog team.
What music do you listen to on the trail?
Anything happy and upbeat, mostly country, christian rock, and songs that a 20 year old usually doesn't know.
How did your dogs get their names?/ How do you choose names?
Our dogs are named with a theme for each litter and the themes are often chosen by fans. Some examples are the "Rock Stars", the "Disney Princesses" and the "Peanuts" litters.
List recent sled dog races and/or best performances
2015 Eagle Cap Extreme- 7th place; 2015 UP200- 2nd place; 2015 Canadian Challenge- 3rd place
Past Yukon Quest Race Results
|2016||13||11d 8h 10m|