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The dogs to the left here are some of the most viewed dogs on our website, click on their faces to learn more about them
Scroll down to meet each member of our kennel and learn more about their role at Crooked Creek Kennel. Or, if you know your favorite dog’s name, just type it in below:
Welcome to Crooked Creek Kennel, home of Josh and Jobie McNeal and their 45 Alaskan Huskies. Crooked Creek Kennel is located in Ester, Alaska. Growing up in Washington Josh had never been exposed to sled dogs until he went to school in Fairbanks, Alaska. Once he stepped on a sled he was instantly hooked. His senior year of college he worked for a professional musher named Ken Anderson and helped him train for his 17th and final Iditarod. That spring Josh graduated and moved to the Kenai Peninsula for his job. Ken leased his team that winter and wanted to sell his team after the Iditarod. Josh saw this as a great opportunity to buy quality dogs that he already had experience with
In the spring of 2018, he bought a house in Kasilof at the base of the Caribou Hills, and Crooked Creek Kennel was born. In March of 2020, Josh and Jobie made the decision to move North for better training conditions and their jobs and ended up buying 20 beautiful acres in the hills just South of Fairbanks in Ester, Alaska. His first year racing the team ran non-competitively in the Tustemena 200 (14th place), and the Kobuk 440 (9th place). In the winter of 2020, the team went to the lower 48 and raced in the Idaho Sled Dog Challenge, and the UP 200. In 2021 while navigating the Covid Pandemic, Josh ran in the Willow 300 (11th place), and the modified iditarod course and finished in 28th over-all, 2nd place rookie. This year Josh is already signed up for the 50th Iditarod, and is looking forward to hopefully improving his standing. For Josh, there is no better feeling than being in the middle of nowhere where it is just him and his dogs traveling through some of the most beautiful and rugged country in the world. He looks forward to racing in the coming years and meeting so many incredible people. Thank you for your support, and mush on!
Josh, age 26 was born and raised in a small logging community of Amboy, Washington on the foothills of Mt. St Helens in Southwest Washington. Growing up he was an avid outdoorsman and participated in football, wrestling, track, and baseball. He spent his summers working on local farms hauling hay and cutting firewood. When he turned 16, he started spending his summers in Kenai, Alaska working at a fishing lodge on the Kenai River. The day after graduating from La Center High school he moved fulltime to Alaska. For the next 4 years he attended the University of Alaska Fairbanks where he graduated in 2017 with a B.S. in Petroleum Engineering. During his tenure in college is where he found his love for mushing.
Jobie McNeal age 26, was born and raised in Coon Rapids Minnesota. Growing up she was a competitive cheerleader & gymnast. She spent her weekends up north at the cabin, where she fell in love with fishing & the outdoors. When she turned 18, she moved to California for her first job as a flight attendant. That is how Jobie learned she had a knack for adventure. After traveling around the world with her friends, she brought her dad on a surprise fishing trip in Alaska for his birthday. While on that trip with her father (Harold Schuldt) she said she was going to live in Alaska someday. Fast forward three years, Jobie turned 21 and got hired on as a flight attendant with Alaska Airlines and was based in Anchorage. She then met Josh (before he owned any dogs) and the rest is history! When she’s not helping out aroundthe kennel Jobie enjoys traveling, reading books, and photography! Last winter while training dogs she realized howmuch she enjoys mushing, you may just see her signed up for races in the future!
Ashley was born, raised and lived in Anchorage—until late 2019 when she made the big move to Fairbanks, AK in search of adventure. Prior to her life with dogs, she worked in the corporate world of retail so the last two years have been wild! In between wrestling dogs and puppies, she’s currently taking classes to pursue a future job in the Forestry industry. She has a goofy black lab named Gambino who has been very generous in sharing her with all these dogs!