From Kyle Hopkins in McGrath --
Here at the McGrath checkpoint, Iditarod volunteers are sleeping in the city courtroom while 31 replacement sleds sit on the snow outside.
About a third of mushers take their mandatory 24-hour layover here, where you can buy a hot shower for 25 cents, six minutes at a time.(There's a secret can of quarters for mushers.)
We're here because bad weather kept us from landing in Rainy Pass and we made a turbulent dash through Windy Pass. Better to cross the Alaska Range today, rather than be stuck in Anchorage tomorrow.
The trail leading into McGrath is hard and fast, promising a rough ride, said Mark Cox, head checker. "This is the kind of year that you see a lot of people coming in with bruises and feeling pretty beat up."