The Iditarod dog sled race is underway in Alaska. The grueling 1,000-mile race stretches from Anchorage to Nome, and an Iowa native is among the competitors.

Emily Maxwell began her journey on Sunday. Her family is posting updates on her status on her Facebook page. As of Monday afternoon, the 33-year-old Iowa City native and University of Iowa graduate had completed 120 miles of the race.

Maxwell's family say that she has been preparing for the race for nearly two years. They're following along thanks to GPS tracking devices on the competitors. The tracking device also contains an emergency button should they encounter danger. Activating that eliminates them from the race. And you can be sure there is plenty of danger out there. From wild animals to sled crashes, and the obvious danger of frostbite.

Maxwell is among 67 competitors in this year's Iditarod race. She is among 16 rookies running it for the first time. No rookie has ever won the event.


[via Gazette]