10 years ago this week ...
Armed with determination
Eagle River’s Mark Hufford finished fifth in the 2002 Sadler’s Midnight Sun Ultra Challenge handcycle race, a 290-mile, six-day trek from Fairbanks to Anchorage.
Hufford said he trained for the race by handcycling several days a week from Eagle River to the Coastal Trail and back.
“I’d trained all year for this,” said the 31-year-old, who broke his back in a 1995 hunting accident, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down.
Note: Hufford went on to compete in the race six more times. A portion of the bike trail running alongside Eagle River Loop is now named in Hufford’s honor. He died in 2011.
Productive day at the Beach
Members of the Chugiak Dog Mushers Association spent a rainy Saturday pouring cement for a new multi-use building at the Beach Lake Trails. The municipality-owned facility was being built with a $30,000 state grant — along with lots of donated material and labor. When completed, the building was intended to serve as a meeting place and warming hut on race days, according to a story on page 12 of the Aug. 1, 2002 Star.
Eagle River’s Clayton McDowell had a pretty good day on the water on July 28, 2002. That’s the day McDowell took over the lead in the Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby by catching a 347-pound monster out of Homer.
Note: McDowell’s catch held up, and he won more than $48,000 for his champion flatfish.