Dog mushing runs in Lori Tweddell’s blood. She was only 6-years old when she ran her first dogsledding race. Her father, Luc Tweddell, raises sled dogs, and today, Lori and her twin sister, Louve, are both raising and training teams of their own. The family lives in Mendenhall Landing, a small community located between Haines Junction and Whitehorse. They raise a total of 57 dogs, with 14 of those who are under Lori’s care and training.
“Five years ago my sister and I showed real interest in the sport,” says Lori. “We decided to raise our own teams. So the dogs I will be racing with have been with me since they were babies.” All three family members - Lori, Louve, and Luc - will be racing their individual teams in the upcoming Yukon Quest 100 mile race.
This isn’t Lori’s first attempt at the Yukon Quest. She raced with her team in the 2019 for the first time, although her dogs were still quite young. "We mostly did it for a fun training run with no pressure on the dogs,” she says. “But this year, they're showing real progress. So hopefully we'll make a better position, but still enjoy the run.”
Due to her studies and summer travels, Lori opted for the shorter 100 mile race. She hit the ground running in August with her kennel of 14 dogs, training them behind the quad during the fall, and now with snow on the ground, on the sled. “I try to run as much as possible during the week, and even more often on the weekends,” she says.
Lori loves being outdoors and spending time with her dogs. “[Dog mushing] is really a lot of work, but it’s a love relationship,” she says. “The dogs are always waiting for me to get outside — they really want to run and play. It’s good fun.”
(Content: Trina Moyles / Photo: Lori Tweddell)