Ed Stielstra

47 year old Yukon Quest rookie

My Sponsors:
Royal Canin USA, Dogbooties.com

Nationality: American
Current Residence: McMillan, MI
Occupation(s): Kennel Owner and Musher
Kennel Name: Nature's Kennel
Name Origination: When we started the kennel we had a lab mix named Nature that was my soulmate. So it was only fitting to name our kennel after her.
Kennel Bloodlines: Stielstra, Berkowitz
Breeds: Alaskan Huskies
# of Dogs in Kennel: 150


Musher Question & Answer

How many years have you been running dogs?
25

Tell us about your dogs?
My team will consist mostly of 3 to 7 year old dogs, and all of them have completed at least one 1,000 mile race. About half of the dogs on my team finished both the Yukon Quest with Laura Neese last year and the Iditarod with me. My main leaders are Enzo and Elmer.

How did you get started running dogs?
I had always loved working with dogs and the first time I ever saw sled dogs hooked up in harness, it was happiest I had ever seen dogs. I knew then that I had to run dogs.

What do you love most about running sled dogs?
The dogs, the freedom, and the silence.

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've been wanting to run the Yukon Quest for a long time and this year, with the help of Laura Neese in training, the goal is becoming a reality. I'd like to run the race as fast as possible and finish being proud of how my dog team looks at the finish.

What music do you listen to on the trail?
Whatever is on Laura Neese's iPod, most likely a mix of Country, Christian Rock, and songs that my grandpa listened to.

How did your dogs get their names?/ How do you choose names?
Each of our litters had a theme that all of the names are associated with. Some of our litters have been named after candy bars, board games, and my highschool friends.

List recent sled dog races and/or best performances
2016 Iditarod - 33rd Place 2016 UP200 - 4th Place 2012 Iditarod - 25th Place

Messages to Mushers

Dear Ed Stielstra My name is Tristian and I chose you as my musher because we are doing a class unit about the Yukon Quest. I hope you do amazing! We are tracking mushers in class so I hope you win. How did you get 150 dogs? How did you get into mushing?
February 02, 2017