But the beauty of the woods, the incredible joy of it is too alluring to be ignored, and I could not stand to be away from it—indeed, still can’t—and so I ran dogs simply to run dogs; to be in and part of the forest, the woods.
Some thought I still trapped and I let them think so—caught in a kind of guilt that just to be running dogs for the sake of running them was to fritter away time—but I was just going to go, and a change came with running them.
It was in some strange manner abrupt but gradual at the same time and it had to do with beauty.
I would see a thing of beauty when running them, or many things, the pictures like frozen jewelry, and there would not be so much beauty when not running them. So I ran them because I wanted to see the beauty again, find the wonderful places they could take me.
Gary Paulsen in Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod