By ECHO ROSS
The 14th annual Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay (KCIBR) is set for June 17. The relay, one of the most popular sporting events of the year for both Yukon and Alaska cyclists, runs from Haines Junction, YT to Haines, AK. More than 1,100 took part in the 2005 event, and with early registration already under way as of April 1, organizers are hoping to hit the 1,200 mark once again, which is the cap.
Last year was the first time we didnt reach the cap in several years, said organizer Mike Young. We were still very close, but we lost some people due to the change of dates.
The change of date last year, from the third week of the month to the fourth, was due to availability of RCMP support. Unfortunately, many people had already booked their ticket and made plans for the regular date, and were forced to withdraw once they learned it would be later. But Young doesnt anticipate any problems this time around, insisting everything is a go from all sides.
One of the changes participants should be aware of in this years race involves crossing at the borders. For the past few years, Canadians have been required to bring two pieces of identification to make it into the U.S., both a birth certificate and drivers license. Now, Americans will need two pieces as well to cross into Canada.
That shouldnt be too much to ask, considering everyone could need a passport by 2007.
The overall winners of last years bike relay were the Animals of Fairbanks, a four-person team which completed the event in six hours, 49 minutes and 15 seconds. While no new records were set in terms of time, a new record was set for the number of teams which pushed off from the start line, at 236.
And an unprecedented 21 solo riders took on the 238-kilometre (148 miles) challenge.
Whitehorse resident Jonah Clark took first place in the mens solo category.
If the trends over the past few years are any kind of indicator, organizers are expecting to see more two- and four-man teams, as well as solo riders, in the future.
Last year, there were a lot more four-person and two-person teams, and less eight-person teams, said Young. I think thats a combination of better bikes and overall, Yukoners and Alaskans getting in better shape.
The recent programs aiming for a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions also have more people looking to their bikes, said Young, which should only bode well for the Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay in the future.
The cost for early registration in the KCIBR is $51 per person ($45 US), but after May 17, the fee will go up by $15. Registration can only be done online, at www.kcibr.com. If anyone has any questions about the registration process, you can e-mail email@example.com. If you cant access the Internet, call Young at 334-6871, or drop by Sport Yukon in Whitehorse.
Anyone who does not have a team, or any team that is looking for additional riders, can also contact Young for assistance.
There are still a few volunteer positions open to help man the checkpoints for the relay. The race requires around 300 volunteers, including RCMP, the Yukon Amateur Radio Association, ambulance personnel, ski patrol and board members.
Yukon Adventure Challenge seeks entries
A new event, the Yukon Adventure Challenge, will be run the long weekend of May 20-22 in the Whitehorse area.
So far 11 teams have signed up, and the registration deadline has been extended to May 1. Organizers are hoping to draw teams from Alaska.
According to a race information sheet, the Yukon Adventure Challenge is a 24-36 hour adventure race, which will be hosted in the Yukon on a course that will not be announced until right before the event.
The race is geared towards both beginner and elite athletes. Disciplines include canoeing, mountain biking, trekking, and rappelling. Navigation and wilderness skills are required. This is a true adventure race - not a marked course, just a map, compass, and your navigation skills.
This race is non-supported, meaning your gear will be moved by race organization to the appropriate pick-up and drop off spot, but no outside support is allowed. Teams may consist of four person co-ed (must have one member of the opposite sex), which is the premier category, or two-person male, female or coed.
The fee for a team of four is $900 Cdn., and $550 for a team of two.
A race briefing will be held on Friday, May 19, and the race begins at 8 a.m. on Sat. May 20. Teams must finish by 8 p.m. on Sunday May 22.
Registrations can be completed and dropped off at Up North Adventures, or Icycle Sports in Whitehorse.
For more information, please contact: Greg or Denise McHale, (867) 633-2670, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
King salmon regs begin May 1
JUNEAU -The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has announced the 2006 sport fishing bag and possession limits for king salmon in Southeast Alaska and Yakutat which will become
effective 12:01 a.m. on May 1, 2006.
The regulations are:
Alaska residents: bag and possession limit of three king salmon 28 inches or greater in length; no annual limit. The use of two rods per angler is allowed from October 2006 through March 2007.
Nonresidents: bag and possession limit of two king salmon 28 inches or greater in length in May and one king salmon 28 inches or greater in length for the remainder of the year; an annual limit of four king salmon 28 inches or greater in length for the entire year.
These regulations apply in all marine waters of Southeast Alaska unless otherwise announced.
The nonresident annual limit of four king salmon also applies in all freshwaters between Cape Suckling and Cape Fairweather.
The 2006 harvest allocation for the sport fishery is based on a preseason abundance index of 1.69 as detennined by the Pacific Salmon Commissions Chinook Technical Committee. This index equates to a 64,170 king salmon allocation to the sport fishery. The Southeast Alaska king salmon management plan prescribes that the regulations listed above be implemented when the king salmon abundance index is between 1.51 and 1.75.
For more information about the sport fisheries in Southeast Alaska, contact the nearest Southeast Alaska ADF&G office or visit: www.state.ak.us/adffllsDortf/reg:ionl/rlhome.htm.