The world’s most famous sled dog race begins in downtown Anchorage on the first Saturday in March, but that’s more of a spectator-friendly ceremony than the real deal.
The first mile and a half of this leg is on city streets lined with thousands of spectators. The next six miles run east and south through the city greenbelts and parks on the extensive system of bike/ski paths. After crossing Tudor Road on an overpass, the trail winds east for several miles in a large wooded park area on the Tozier Track sprint dog trails; the end of the trail for all the teams and their Iditariders is at the Campbell Airstrip right next to the Bureau of Land Management Visitors Center. It's a beautiful setting to end a spectacular day winding through a very special part of Anchorage.
If you're looking for a full winter vacation surrounding the excitement of the Iditarod, get in touch with Salmon Berry Tours. They offer two winter itineraries that include the Iditarod and other key winter experiences, such as the aurora! One is their 12-day Iditarod Aurora in Denali package, and the other is Iditarod Ultimate Family Field Trip. Both itineraries are offered just once a year, beginning in late February.