Bridgett Watkins was born in Arkansas and moved at age 5 to Alaska. Upon arriving in Alaska the long dark winters were quickly a reality and finding something to do was important to her family. A local sled dog sprint racing event was being held at a local track. It was here that she and her family decided they wanted to get a couple of dogs and give it a try. A few weeks later they had two sled dogs and went to the track with the other kids and families, and, as they say, the rest is history. Every weekend thereafter was spent at the Alaska Dog Mushers Hall, where she was running, racing, and winning sprint races. She worked her way from 2, 3, 4, and eventually 6-dog classes. At age 13 she raced in the Arctic Winter Games bringing home a gold and two silver medals in the 6-dog race for the State of Alaska. During her later high school years, she took a break from sled dogs and moved back to Arkansas to complete college. She graduated from the University of Arkansas Monticello with a baccalaureate degree in nursing. However, her heart and soul never left the state of Alaska nor her love of dog mushing.
After marrying her husband, Scotty, in 2005 they spent the next 6 years on the bearing sea cost in Nome, Alaska. During this time Bridgett frequented her family’s kennel- SP Kennel (SP kennel is a premier sled dog kennel). She flew back and forth staying for weeks at a time to help train their teams.
After multiple years of training and racing mid-distance races with the kennel, the decision was made to sign up for the Iditarod in 2012. Sometimes our best-laid plans are not the plans God has for us. A month before sign-ups her life forever changed when she found out she was going to be a mama to her own ‘pup’. She took a ‘few’ years off while she had two children, Timber and River.
While raising her family she continued to help out SPK and watch them achieve championship after championship. She remained at every finish line even with babies en-toe. Her son TImber accompanied her on the 1000 mile journey at age 2 to see his Papa win his first Yukon Quest in Whitehorse at 40 below. Slowly, as her children grew, she was able to participate in a few more mid-distance races with SPKennl dogs. In 2018 a year of change began as she began growing her own dreams and thus, Kennel on a Hill was established. With three puppies given to her by her family at SPK, the adventure began. Over the last few years, she has raised her own litters and continues to raise her team all stemming from the SPKennel bloodline.
Bridgett continues to work as an Emergency Room Registered Nurse part-time. In her ‘spare time,’ she loves to be active, being outdoors on the rivers and lakes, picking berries, hunting, fishing, skiing, and, her newfound love, surfing. She enjoys any competition and can be found participating in spartan races to test her endurance and mental fortitude. Currently, Bridgett is in graduate school working toward her Masters in Nursing to obtain her Nurse Practitioner Certification.