Lance Mackey is a four-time winner of the famous Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race and owner of Mackey’s Comeback Kennel. Born and raised in Alaska, Lance grew up around dog mushing. His father, Dick Mackey, was one of the founders of the race and took first place in 1978. In 1983, Lance's oldest brother, Rick Mackey, was the winner of the Iditarod as well. In 2007, Lance became the first person to win both the Yukon Quest and Iditarod in the same year. This feat was considered almost impossible by many and is one of the most impressive feats ever by a musher. Lance also won the Veterinarians' Choice award after winning the 2007 Yukon Quest. In 2008, he won the Tustumena 200, followed by his fourth consecutive win on the Yukon Quest and his second win in the Iditarod. In 2009 he captured his third consecutive Iditarod win and, in 2010, finished second in the Yukon Quest and won his fourth consecutive Iditarod. Lance resides in Fox, a small community outside of Fairbanks, with his family and dogs.
I am originally from Fairbanks but have been living in Fox since 2006, and that is where I spend most of my time. I moved here for better training trails and weather that resembles the weather conditions during the Yukon Quest. I love living in Fox. I tell people this is as close to heaven as I’m going to be for a while. The view I have from here is stunning; I live at the highest point in Fox and can see the mountain ranges across the valley, Ester Dome to my right and all of Fairbanks spread below. Living here I have isolation, with only four neighbors around, but I am also not too far from town. When not out on the trails or spending time with family, I spend my days doing dog-related chores and training, working on my house - which I built mostly on my own out of pocket - and working for a riverboat company in town.
1.) Chena Hot Springs
2.) Yukon River
Every visit to Chena Hot Springs is different, depending on what family joins me, but the ritual is the same every time – a soak in the hot springs followed by the best homemade Bloody Mary in the state at the Chena Hot Springs restaurant. Sometimes I’ll add an appetizer to that too. It’s close to home so I go four or five times a months. I usually just go for the day but occasionally I will stay over. I recommend visiting the Ice Museum and the Chena River is absolutely beautiful. I like to sit out there with friends, just hanging out and taking in the view. Chena Hot Springs Resort is about 60 miles northeast of Fairbanks.
I love the river and water is my passion. I grew up on the water and was a commercial fisherman for 13 years. From the age of 17, I fished all over Alaska. When I go out to the Yukon River, fishing is the number one thing I do, but I like going up the river in a boat, just cruising along, looking for moose. It is peaceful, relaxing and a real getaway - not a care in the world when you’re out there. All you see is a village here and there. I access the river from Dawson City or where the Yukon breaks into different channels by Mountain Village. The river is several hours away from Fairbanks so I usually camp out for several days along the river and stop for a burger at the restaurant in the Yukon River Camp by the Yukon River Bridge, along the Dalton Highway.
3.) Ivory Jacks
Ivory Jacks is my favorite restaurant and it’s located on Goldstream Road, just 15 minutes from Fairbanks. I like the food and bar combination and there is a huge variety of food on the menu. I am a big fan of Alaska king crab paired with a Crown Royal. They have good rich drinks, good service and a good atmosphere. They always have local talent playing music and it’s a great local hangout point. There is never a dull moment at Ivory Jacks.