November 2008
                                   Volume 5 - Issue 12
Quick Links

Now Available
Click link above to verify your race registration.

Mark your calendars for the 36th American Birkebeiner
® from Feb. 19-21, 2009!

The 2009 events include the 50K Birkie Skate, Subaru 54K Birkie Classic, and 23K Kortelopet Skate and Classic races.

Birkie 2009 also features shorter races, events and festivities for:

  • men, women, teens and kids
  • families
  • the super fit
  • the super enthusiastic
  • those vowing to get in shape
  • those wanting pure and simple recreation
  • those wanting to meet like-minded fitness buffs
  • those wanting challenge, excitement and fun
  • those wanting to support friends, family and skiers from around the world!

From the Barnebirkie to the Birkebeiner...Take the Challenge, Ski the Adventure, Live the Birkie!

Find out more at
or call us at 715.634.5025. We're eager to hear from you!

American Birkebeiner Trail Run, Relay & Trek

Sept. 26, 2009

The 2009 American Birkebeiner Trail Run includes you choice of:

  • 26.2 mile Marathon Relay
  • Individual 13.1 mile Half Marathon
  • 21K Birkie Trail Trek
  • 5K Fun Run/Wlak

Learn more visit

The Birkie®:
36 Years of Inspiring Skiers
to Live Fit, Healthy Lives!

"Tony Wise asked me to design a good trail system at Telemark. I spent 14 days there and laid out trails similar to the Vasalopet trails in Sweden. Later, Marty Hall added more hills. From the point of view of competitive skiers, it is a very good course."

~ Sven Wiik, Nordic guru, Steamboat Springs, Colorado

"The Birkie has been a factor in my life since the first time I skied the trail in 1976. My philosophy is to do whatever we can do to foster participation in the overall event. I want more people on the snow and enjoying the weekend."

~ Ned Zuelsdorff, Executive Director, Cable, WI

"On my 63rd Birthday (Feb. 11th) I made my "Birkie Fever" goal to do the race in under four hours. I was running behind my goal for most of the race. While crossing Duffy Road a cheering crowd of younsters gave me an adrenalin boost to kick my stide into overdrive. My finish time was 3:59:59. Thanks kids!

What I appreciate most of all is how the Birkie Staff does not quit after the race. They still have a grooming priority following the race and it makes for many hours and days of great grooming."

~ Carl Kozak, Hayward, WI

Praise for 2008 Events!

"It was like skiing on Heaven's Floor."

"Better than Christmas. I will be skiing the Birkie every year I'm alive on Earth. It's that special. Thanks for another spectacular year."

"To all of the you who make the American Birkebeiner your life. I thank you."

"Every year I marvel at the manner in which details are prepared and the volunteers so willing to help. Great stuff, always a highlight of the year for me."

"I just finished my first Birkie and loved it. You guys are amazing. I'm hooked. I'll be back next year."

"I would like to thank all the organizers and volunteers who provide a fun and motivating experience."

"It is just amazing how each year, something is always improved, since every year I think it is just perfect."

"I have grown to consider the Birkebeiner a lifestyle as opposed to a race, so there's no urge to let it go at the milestone of registering for my 20th race."

"What I appreciate most of all are the Birkie Staff efforts and how they don't quit after the race. They still have a grooming priority and it really makes for many hours and days of great skiing.   Thanks guys."

"I want to compliment the volunteers who staffed the course for their bright moods and helpfulness.  I also want to thank the folks who drove the buses and managed the traffic. Even the snowmobilers who add a little spice to the event.  It seems that every year those things are just the best.   This year you had snow and you used it perfectly."

"One of the most wonderful moments while skiing my first Kortelopet was skiing up the big hill to the amazing rhythm of Anishinabeg drummers and singers.  What an outpouring of power and warmth!  Please extend my thanks to those musicians if you know who they are."

  Greetings from the Birkie®!

Ned Winter Hi Skiers and Friends!

Snow fell this past weekend and the Birkie Trails were almost covered. I don't think winter has really arrived yet, but the colder night temperatures have started freezing the ground which will preserve the snow when it gets here to stay. The trails and the groomers are ready!

It appears that many of you are getting ready for snow or at least thinking about the Birkie as 4,170 of you are already registered. That's 550 more than last year at this time. Keep those registrations coming in and we'll break 7,000 skiers this year!

We've had great responses to our two recent surveys. Thanks to the more than 1800 of you who completed our busing survey. We are considering options including both the free school buses to Telemark and a limited number of coach buses for those who are able to donate toward our young skier programs to get to the actual start line in comfort on race day. A decision will be made in the near future. A link to the busing survey results appears below.

More than 1600 of you responded to our Cross-Training Survey letting us know how you keep your self fit as well as prepare for the Birkie events. Your responses will help us and our sponsors better meet your fitness needs both directly and indirectly. Results of that survey also follow below.

Looking forward to seeing some of you at this weekend's Minnesota Ski and Snowboard Expo at the Minneapolis Convention Center, November 14-16. Please stop by the Birkie booth and say "Hi". See you on the trails!

Stay Fit!

Ned Zuelsdorff
Executive Director

  Birkie News®
Fall Maintenance Work Completed on the Birkie Trail

By Bill Pierce, Trail Supervisor

The Birkie Trail crew has recently completed a large amount of necessary Fall maintenance. The trail from 4 to 45 kilometers has been side brushed and cleaned. From 23 to 45 kilometers it has been limbed for overhanging branches and dead trees.  Brushing and removal of limbs is scheduled every four to eight years and takes approximately two seasons to complete. It is an enormous job and more than five hundred man and machine hours were logged to complete the work. The trail also received a final mowing this Fall.

Other small projects along the Classic Trail include the installation of 14 gates at road crossings, adding the kilometer markers, and widening the three shared food stations. 

The "OO" maintenance building addition has been finished. It is now large enough to store all of our equipment. Final touches on lights and the boiler heat will be completed this month. 

The grooming machines have been serviced and maintained throughout the summer and are waiting for the first significant snowfall to go to work.  A light dusting of snow fell along the trail this past weekend. Regular grooming typically starts after Thanksgiving. Like you the Trail Crew and equipment are eager to get out on the trail. Be sure to stay informed with our online Trail Report.

Results for Birkie Skier Busing and Cross-Training Surveys

Thanks to those of you who completed the Birkie Skier Busing and Cross-Training Surveys. Complete results can be viewed by visiting the Birkie Home Page, scroll down to the Survey Results.

We are pursuing having more buses available to get you to the start line on race day. Check out the December Carpe Skiem for more information on new options. We are using the results of the Cross-Training Survey to find and work with sponsors and others who can help meet your training needs. Thanks for the great response!

Birkie® Skiers for Cures Introduces Online Fundraising

The 2009 Birkie Skiers for Cures campaign will Join the Movement with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society in the fight to cure MS.
Participants in the 50K American Birkebeiner®, 54K Birkie® Classic sponsored by Subaru, 23K Kortelopet, and the Johnson Bank Prince Haakon 8K can be a part of our fundraising efforts. New this year, skiers can collect donations from their friends and family online. Click here to get started.

Skiers raising the most money will reap the benefits: the opportunity to meet and ski with Bjorn! The participant raising the most money will also receive a free entry into the 2010 American Birkebeiner race of their choice and a free get-away weekend at Lakewoods Resort near Cable, WI. All skiers raising pledges of $100 or more will be part of a random drawing for two similar get-aways at Tagalong Golf and Resort, Birchwood and Spider Lake Lodge, Hayward.  Additional prizes will be awarded and announced closer to the event. Participants will also receive recognition on their race bibs.

To read more about Bjorn's participation in the 2009 Birkie Classic and Birkie Skiers for Cures, click here.

Prince Haakon 8K Start Moved

Do you want to be a part of Birkie 2009 but not quite up to a 50 or 23 kilometer race? We understand! That's why we launched the Prince Haakon.

The 2009 Prince Haakon sponsored by Johnson Bank will be an 8K event starting at Hatchery Park in Hayward and finishing on Hayward's Main Street. It starts at 1:00 p.m. and will be held on Saturday, February 21st.

To learn more or to register for the event, click here.

  Birkie® Fever

KenHillMotivation, Determination and Fortitude Lead to Skier's Goal Oriented Lifestyle

By Cherie Morgan

What would motivate one man to complete six marathons in his sixtieth year? Ken Hill set the goal to prove that age is not a barrier in improving fitness levels and participating in an active life.

As a man who started skiing at age 47 and running at age 55 he continues to grow stronger in spite of his age. He has also knocked off 30 pounds in the past five years. He discovered that health and fitness improved.......continue reading click here.

Birkie Fever Stories Needed

We know you have a story to tell. Whether you are a skier, spectator or volunteer we want to hear from you. Birkie Fever is a phenomonen that touches many people in many different ways. Share your Birkie Fever with others. Send 300 word essays or short quotes and photos to Afraid you can't write? Don't let that stop you. We can take your words and weave them into a great Birkie Fever story.
  Training Tips

Fitting Ski Equipment to Your Goals

CXC Ski Equipment PrepBy Bryan Fish

There are many choices when it comes to ski equipment selection, but the main goal is to find equipment that fits you.  What I mean is that it should suit your personal needs and goals. 


A ski doesn't know how tall you are, but it certainly knows how much you weigh.  The weight of the skier in combination with one's fitness and technical proficiency make up the variables necessary to define suitable ski selection.

Some World Cup athletes tend to select skis that are greater than 120 percent of their body weight for firm track conditions, but we need to look into the mirror and determine if that is appropriate for your personal needs.  Typically, it is not.  Yes, a stiffer ski might...Continue reading, click here.

Brian Gregg photo above courtesy of TOKO USA.

Bryan Fish
Bryan Fish
is the Central Cross Country Skiing
Elite Team coach and 2007 United States Ski
and Snowboard Asssociation Cross Country
Domestic and Development Coach of the Year.

 What's Next?
Mark Your Calendars for the 36th American Birkebeiner®: Feb. 19-21, 2009

From the Barnebirkie to the Birkebeiner, this citizen's ski race features something for everyone. Watch for 36th anniversary details in upcoming issues of Carpe Skiem and online at

About the Birkie®

From February 19-21, 2009, more than 7,000 fit, colorfully-clad skiers from all walks of life and from around the world will descend upon the Wisconsin northwoods to participate in the 36th anniversary American Birkebeiner, a cross-country ski race that weaves more than 50 kilometers (30 miles) along a hilly, heavily wooded trail from the Telemark Resort near Cable to the finish line on Main Street in downtown Hayward.

For some, it's serious business. The Birkebeiner is part of the Worldloppet, a circuit of 15 Nordic ski races held on four continents. The race attracts a top cadre of professional racers from 19 countries, including past and present Olympians and those competing in the International Ski Federation standings.

For many hundreds of others, though, it's an annual celebration of personal endurance and outdoor enthusiasm. Since its inception in 1973, 'The Birkie' has grown into the largest cross country ski marathon in the nation. While pros may complete the course in about two hours, legions of weekend warriors soldier on in triple that time. Citizen skiers can compete in the full race or sign up for 23 kilometer Kortelopet or one of our many other events.

You don't even have to click into skis to join in on the party. An estimated 15,000 to 20,000 spectators line many portions of the route, and it seems all of Hayward is there cheering at the finish line. Equipment demos, citizen sprints, family fun races/tours and other events round out the weekend.

Take the Challenge, Ski the Adventure, Live the Birkie®

Upcoming Events

Birkie Classic Trail Tour
Sunday, January 18, 2009

2009 American Birkebeiner Events

Thursday, February 19 - Saturday, February 21, 2009

2009 American Birkebeiner Trail Run, Relay and Trek
Saturday, September 26, 2009

For more information visit
Jan 15th
Fee Deadline

The next entry fee deadline is January 15th, Fee $90. Register today click here!

Kortelopet skiers ages 22 or younger on race day take $20 off of your fee.
Offer Expires: January 15, 2009