The terms MAIL RUN and participation have been hallmarks of the Mail Run Event for 30 years. In its early years, the Gold Rush Trail Sled Dog Mail Run was a race, in fact it was a qualifying event for both the Yukon Quest and the Iditarod. However in 1998 the competitive focus was dropped and the emphasis shifted from competition to participation. Everyone involved with the Mail Run, both the on trail participants and the off trail volunteers all participate in the Mail Run event in their own way. Everyone receives the same participation awards.
The Mail Run takes place over three looped trails and is run over three days. While it is primarily a sled dog event, the Mail Run is open not just to dog teams but also skijorers, cross country skiers, snowshoers, kick-sledders, runners and probably any other form of self-propelled transportation capable of negotiating a packed snow trail. Participants usually participate in all three of the stages but they may also choose to limit their participation to just one or two of the stages. Mail Run participants will be sworn in as Official Mail Carriers but they must be willing to complete all three stages if they are to carry the mail.
We have a pretty good idea of just where the trail will run on each of the three days, but because Quesnel/Wells/Barkerville are logging towns, we sometimes have to make last minute adjustments to accommodate any logging traffic that could impact the trail. For this reason, final details of the trail and schedule of events will be posted on the Mail Run website by early January, each year.
The Mail Run is suitable for dog teams of all sizes however it is important that mushers are confident that their dogs are conditioned and capable of completing the posted distances. If there is a chance that your dogs may be unwell, please do not bring them to the event, to ensure that no illness will be spread to other dogs. Please ensure that your animals have current vaccinations.
As indicated above, each day’s run will be on a looped trail, which means that everyone will start and finish at the same place, making it unnecessary to have to move your vehicle/dog truck from the start line to the finish line. The Mail Run is not a race, participants can take their time and can feel free to stop and enjoy the view