Willow 300 cancelled due to poor trail conditions

Less than a day after announcing that the race would go forward, organizers for the Willow 300 announced that the event is canceled due to deteriorating trail conditions. (Facebook screenshot)

The Willow 300 has been cancelled due to deteriorating trail conditions.

The announcement came late Tuesday morning on social media. According to a post on the Willow 300 Facebook page, rain “destroyed the trails and water crossings.”

On Monday, organizers had announced that the race would go forward with its mass start on Thursday morning. That announcement came after staff and volunteers took the weekend to assess the trails and come up with a plan. Since then, many areas of the Susitna Valley have experienced rain and warm temperatures.

In an updated post shortly after noon on Tuesday, race officials say concern for the safety of mushers and dog teams led to the decision to cancel the Willow 300 for this year.

The Willow 300 was set to start on Willow Lake, the same place where the Iditarod restart typically occurs.

This is the second sled dog race to be canceled in the Mat-Su in the last few days. Last week, organizers of the Knik 200 canceled that event for similar reasons. Both races are Iditarod qualifiers.