Father and daughter team up
Author: Fredrik Ljone Holst Photo: Fredrik Ljone Holst Publish date: 31.01.13 13:17
At Røros Husky a few kilometres north of the old mining town, the baying of 50 sled dogs resound across the snowcovered farmland. Half of the dogs have been training to pull the sleds of Torgeir Øren and Vilde Amundsen Øren, Femundløpet's only(?) father/daughter team.
When Torgeir finished the 500 kilometre race in Finnmark a few years ago, he swore that he would never do another race that long. So when the veteran returns to Femundløpet, it is as a participant in the shorter 400k race, partenering with his teenage daughter Vilde. The 18-year-old will leave Røros with bib number 184, her father following one minute behind with number 185 on his chest an sled. Torgeir says he doesn't consider this a comeback but that he's out to enjoy the trail, and the team plans to stick together. But time will show if thsi develops into a family duel.
Røros Husky make it their business to give tourists a taste of mushing in the area around Orvos and Glåmos, but in the run-up to this year's race, Torgeir and Vilde have been training 24 dogs for Femundløpet, before picking out the final 16 to make up the two teams.
English girl Becky is in charge of the dogs back at the kennel, as she has been for a couple of winter seasons now. She invites us in to greet Torgeir's lead dogs Ice and K2. They react rather differently to strangers; Ice jumoing up and embracing us like old friends, K2 standing back and keeping her distance. But as Becky and many others know all too well, a dog tehtered in the kennel and a dog running in a team are two very different things. Both Ice and K2 will have plenty of opportunity to prove their mettle on the trail in the days to come.