Susan Butcher (1954-2006) was one of the best mushers in history. She was a four-time winner of the Iditarod, a race in which she competed for 17 consecutive years. Her nurturing approach to running her dog team forever changed the sport.
When she was dominating the race in the 1980s, the Iditarod Trail Committee even copyrighted a logo, “Alaska: Where men are men and women win the Iditarod.”
Butcher was respected as an athlete and dog trainer and was universally well-liked as a genuinely kind human. So much so that March 1, the traditional start of the Iditarod, is Susan Butcher Day in Alaska.
Susan Butcher would have been 64 years old today. Happy Birthday, Susan—sorry you left us so soon.
Adventure Journal covered Butcher as a Historical Badass. Read about her life and times here.
Photo by Lindsey B