During the summer, there is a reason the salmonberries are so big and plentiful along Power Creek Road. Photo by Dick Shellhorn

Recently I wrote about Olaf Gildnes’s dog Jake that did a runner on he and Dick Renner while pheasant hunting in eastern Washington state. 

It occurred to me that there are many dogs right here in Cordova that are engaged in a uniquely “only in Cordova” activity involving running.  

On a daily basis, there is a considerable number of local canines that “Go Dog Go,” typically along Power Creek Road — and perhaps not as noticeably near Hartney Bay on Whitshed Road and along Alaganik Road. 

Their owners drive them out these roads, and then let them out to run in front, beside, or behind the vehicle. The speed depends on many factors, including the ability, size, age, and condition of the dog(s).   

While walking sometimes I see them coming at me full bore, bounding merrily along; others trot along near the vehicle, and a few jog behind with tongues hanging out. 

I confess to exasperation at this pastime, not knowing the intent of an animal running at you full speed, but over the years have come to know most of these dogs on an almost personal basis.   


Why, just the other day one such canine passed me, stopped, and came back to allow me to give him a pat on the head before racing back to catch up.  

There are also several pet owners who park and walk with their dogs. These dogs will trot over to check me out and then wander off.  

Daisy, a large dog in this category, will amble up and let me brush the rain or snow off her thick coat, while I shoot the breeze with her owners. Not for long. She lays down, begins to issue this loud moan — signaling that’s enough chit-chat, let’s get moving. Her owners smile, claiming she is part wolf, and wants to get back on the prowl.    

Encounters with joggers or bikers plus dogs is not as common. One young lady has a beautiful golden retriever that she has well trained to stay by her side; I have discovered if I clap my hands, it will come running up to receive a tousle of its curly reddish hair. 

One of my favorites is a cheerful threesome of gals that walk with two bigger dogs and a little Yorkie that zips in and out like a bee. And then there is the lumbering mellow retriever named Max, walked daily during the summer by a couple who were school mates of mine at CHS in the early 60s. 

After he gets a haircut, Max looks like Mufasa from the movie “The Lion King.” He would let you pet him all day, and I understand he’s the favorite of all the kids up the hill. 

Somewhere in writing this piece I thought of using the title of another P. D. Eastman’s children’s books, “Big Dog Little Dog” as the header for this feature. 

But I decided to stick with “More ‘Go Dog Go.’”  

For a reason.  

When all these dogs are “Go Dog Go”-ing, you will notice erratic tracks along the berms. With tails wagging and noses down, they often stop briefly.    

Did you ever wonder why during summertime some of the biggest and juiciest salmon berries are found along Power Creek Road?  

“Go Dog Go.” 

This story originally ran in the Feb. 16 issue of The Cordova Times.