September 2009
                                   Volume 7 - Issue 11
Quick Links
On-line Registration
Skier Confirmation

Birkie on Facebook�

The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation is now on Facebook�. Check us out for race information, discussion boards, photos and more.

Mark your calendars for the 37th American Birkebeiner
Feb.  25-27, 2010!

The 2010 events include the 50K Birkie Skate sponsored by Becker Law Office, Subaru 54K Birkie Classic, and 23K Kortelopet Skate and Classic races sponsored by Premier Physical Medicine & Wellness Clinic.

Birkie 2010 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

or register today for the Trail Run, Relay or Trek.


Come out, ski and enjoy the Birkie and Birkie Classic Trails and become a Birkie Tour Founder!

The tour is an untimed, non-competitive, "open-track" event open to skiers age 13 and older.

Tour Options

Birkie Tour Distances
43K Birkie Tour
48K Birkie Tour
51K Birkie Tour

Korte Tour Distances
22K Korte Tour
27K Korte Tour

Learn more visit

The Birkie:
37 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

Praise for 2009 Events!

I had a great time skiing my first classic birkie in many years. I want to congratulate Ned and everyone else who have worked so hard to bring the Birkie and the classic trail to near perfection.~Mick

The classic trail was a blast!!

I had so much fun!

Nice work with the buses this year.  The addition of the skier drop-off area was an excellent change.  This was the easiest year (out of 12 completed) that I have ever had to get dropped off and bused to the start.  Thanks for this change, I hope you can keep this change in place for future years.~Eric

The Volunteers are the best. Many thanks to them.

Beautifully groomed trails
Many eager, enthusiastic volunteers
Fewer grumpy contestants
More space and less congestion on the skate trails
Outstanding finishes. Is the winner of the classic going to have some bragging rights to his kids and grandchildren?!

To me the day is close to a religious experience, you are excited but respectful, almost reverent to the course and the challenges of the day. The people you are skiing with are all comrades on a mission to soak up the day and dig within to see what we all have down deep.


I pray I will be able and worthy to ski again next year.~Hugh

Thanks for a wonderful event! It's truly a pleasure being a participant.~Roger

The extension of the classic trail is great!

I had a great time, I'm an avid runner cyclist and I was very impressed by the amount of support that was available to the athletes at the Birkie. Thank you!

Superb Event! I traveled from Colorado to ski the event and from my perspective, I saw a "well-oiled" and well-supported event. I was moved emotionally by the community participation and the atmosphere of the day.

I have Birkie Fever already and its only March!

Excellent Birkie. Your volunteers make it smooth to those of us who come in for the event. They are much appreciated and help to promote the enthusiasm of the weekend.

Thanks for another great race!

The new classic trail is great. Wish it was even longer.

Great Race and great job by all!!!

A big thank you and congratulations for another extraordinary Birkebeiner. Everything was perfect as usual. Great volunteers at the food stands, miracle grooming by those miracle groomers, and a fantastic race. The number of hours everyone puts in to make this race so special is appreciated beyond words by us skiers. Thank you, thank you and thank you!~Barb

Everything was awesome and I've got "Birkie Fever."

Much love from Alabama! One closer to the purple bib.

I also thank everyone in the Birkie organization for another very well run event. It was a pleasure to visit Hayward once again. I look forward to
my 31st Birkie in 2010!

Gets better each year.
Keep it up.

This year was my first Birkie at age 68. The whole experience surpassed my expectations, including the trail itself, which was a lot better than I had imagined. The hills one after the other made for a great ski with no dangerous hairpin bends at hill bottoms to take skiers out in pileups like some ski marathons have. I had no close calls. Thanks!

I look forward to the Birkie each year, your volunteers are the best, and the race is very organized and exciting. Thanks so much!

You do a great job with the race. It has become a family tradition.

Great job...compliments to the populace of all the Hayward/Cable area.
Thanks for everything Birkie!

Great event. All the work everyone does is appreciated so much. It makes for a memorable event. I can't wait to return every year.
  Greetings from the Birkie�!

Hi Skiers and Friends!

The Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek is coming quickly. We are looking forward to having a record 600 or more participants either running or walking under the fast approaching Fall colors. I hope you're able to join us on the Birkie� Trail on September 26. 

Trail projects are moving ahead as are our preparations for the new BirkieTour and the 2010 Birkie itself this winter. Look for more information about preparations and changes as we move into the Fall. We are remodeling the Birkie� website and hope to have the new site up in early October.

As always, we welcome your comments and you can reach me at [email protected].

Stay fit,
Ned Zuelsdorff
Executive Director
[email protected]

  Birkie News�
Only 17 Days Until the Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek

Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek Are You Registered?

Over 400 people have already registered for the 2009 Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek. Have you?

Online registration for all events is available here until Thursday, September 24th at 10:00 p.m. Click here for more information or to print race applications.

Late Race Registration & Bib Pick-up

Race registration and bib pick-up is open on Friday, September 25 from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the American Birkebeiner Office in Hayward for all events.

Race registration for 3 or 6 person Marathon Relay Teams closes on Friday, September 25 at 8:00 p.m. Participants may still pick up their race bibs at the Cable Rod & Gun Club from 7:00 to 8:30 a.m. Saturday morning. Remember the event is limited to 75 Marathon Relay Teams.

Registration and bib pick-up is open for the Half Marathon, 21K Trek and 5K on Saturday, September 26 from 7:00 to 10:45 a.m. at Hatchery Creek Park in Hayward.

Click here to learn more about the events or to register. You may also contact us at 715-634-5025 or [email protected].

2010 Birkie T-Shirt Contest Design Winner

Birkie Trail Run, Relay & TrekThe American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation (ABSF) has determined a winner of the Birkie T-Shirt Design Contest for the 2010 event. The winning t-shirt design will be the featured retail t-shirt for the event. 

"We created the t-shirt design contest for the 2010 event as a way to allow artists and those who love the Birkie a creative way to participate in the event," said Ned Zuelsdorff, Executive Director of the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation.

"More than 25 people submitted designs and the panel of judges had a very difficult time determining the winner," said Zuelsdorff. "There were so many excellent submissions that it was really hard to pick just one."

"The winning design reflects the 'Live the Birkie' lifestyle by focusing on the outdoors and on the skate and classic skiing techniques," said Zuelsdorff. "Andy Wood, our winning designer, really captured the spirit of the trail and the event." 

Andy Wood of Lakeville, Minnesota plans to ski his first Birkie this year. He is registered for the 54K Birkie Classic.

How is someone skiing his first Birkie able to capture the essence of the event? For Wood cross country skiing has been a part of his life since he was three years old. He grew up skiing in Durango, Colorado and competed in several Junior National Competitions. After high school he decided to continue his skiing career by moving to....Continue reading, click here.

Birkie Trail Projects Moving Forward

Several trail projects are moving forward:

  • The bridge located in Duffy's field, about � mile before the Birkie reaches Lake Hayward is being replaced. The old wooden bridge was no longer safe and has been removed. New concrete abutments are in place and the steel I-beam supports are being installed within a week. Installation of the wooden deck with railings will follow. The new 54' bridge will span a trout stream and will be completed by late Fall. We share the bridge with snowmobiles and it will become part of a new walking-running-bicycling trail. Two DNR trail grants and several generous donations are covering much of the $72,000 cost.
  • We are remodeling the "OO" warming cabin. The changing room side of the building is being expanded. Both sides of the building structure will have wooden storage cubes for daily use, and new tables and seats will be installed. Deconstruction has been completed and the project should be completed before the Birkie Trail Run.
  • Logging has been completed in preparation for expanding the parking area on the north side of the "OO" trail head. Heavy use this past winter created the need for the expansion to assure safety of trail users. The expanded lot will accommodate an additional 120+ cars. The expanded area will be planted to vegetation rather that graveled since most use will be in the winter.
  • The Fall mowing of the Birkie, Birkie Classic and Kortelopet trails has already begun. Multiple passes will be made before the Trail Run, and mowing will be completed in October.
  • Two corners at C24K+ and C25K on the Classic Trail have been reworked with the project being completed last night. A photos is available here.
These projects are part of our continued effort to maintain and improve our trail facilities. You can help by becoming a Birkie Trail Friend. More information is available here.
American Birkebeiner's Young Skier Grant Programs

This year the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation will award $14,000 in grants to young skier programs. The application deadline is October 2, 2009, click here for application materials.

2009 American Birkebeiner Race Video

Birkie Trail Run, Relay & TrekFree Webcast Available

Central Cross Country Ski Association (CXC) is pleased to announce the inaugural webcast of the 2009 American Birkebeiner 50km skate race. This will be the first ever full digital coverage of the largest cross country ski event in the North America. The webcast is available to participants, spectators and Nordic fans at no charge. 

Click here to view the video. 


Second Wind: The Rise of the Ageless Athlete

Second WindSecond Wind: The Rise of the Ageless Athlete is an inspiring account of a growing subculture of Americans who are challenging the notion of what it means to grow old. These baby boomers can hardly be considered old, yet this huge group is rewriting the rules of aging. These stories of trials and perseverance will motivate you to achieve your best.

The book by Birkie Skier, Lee Bergquist features Jan Guenther, a business woman, triathlete, Birkie skier, wife and mother who explains how she balances family life, work and her passion for competition. Also featured is inspirational skier Barb Klippel of Hayward, who has overcome many obstacles, but continues to ski and stay fit hoping to become a member of the Birchleggings Club.

Read excerpts from the book, click here.

Rave Reviews for Second Wind

"Finally a book that enables people to see that we do get better with age. Second Wind: The Rise of the Ageless Athlete is a wonderful story about mature athletes who just keep going through sports and life." ~Lynne Cox, Author of Swimming to Antartica, Swam the Bering Strait

"At long last, someome has given masters athletes their due. Read Second Wind and be inspired."~Sean Callahan Editor, Masters Athlete Magazine

"I found myself truly inspired by the variety of athletes and sports included in Second Wind. Runners, swimmers, cyclists, weight lifters and skiers caught my attention and proved that sport can improve with age."~Cherie Morgan, Media Coordinator, American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation

Purchase Second Wind: The Rise of the Ageless Athlete, click here.
Online Fundraising for Birkie Skiers for Cures Live this Week

Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek
Birkie Skiers for Cures raised over $110,000 for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society last year.

Help is exceed this amount in 2010 by clicking here.

Birkie Now on LinkedIn

Completing a Birkie race is not an easy! Bob Walasiak has created a group in LinkedIn to recognize your achievement and as a way to reach out to fellow skiers who share the same sport. The site was created to meet and network with people all over the world who share the sport of cross country skiing.

Check out the Birkie Skiers group on LinkedIn, click here.

Birkie Offers Matching Donation to CAMBA for Single Track Construction

The Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association (CAMBA) is seeking donations to allow completion of a two year project to build a 21 mile segment of single track from Hatchery Park to the "OO" Birkie trail head. Most of the trail has been completed and it is fantastic for both mountain biking and running.
In the winter it will be fun for snowshoeing.

The Birkie Board is has teamed with the Seeley Ski Club to offer a $2,500 challenge match. We will match donations made to CAMBA for completion of the trail, up to $2,500 total.

The deadline for donations is Sunday, September 20, 2009, the final day of the Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival at Cable. More information about CAMBA and making a tax-deductible donation is available here.


We Need Your Help!

We are looking for Sponsors to become partners in the American Birkebeiner, the Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek, and the new BirkieTour. We can provide your company or employer with a chance to promote your goods and services to over 10,000 active, health conscious, well educated, family oriented, outdoor loving people just like you.

Sponsorships are important to the stability of these great events. We are able to customize the Sponsor benefits we provide to best meet the needs of a Sponsor. Please contact Ned at [email protected] if you think your company is interested in this opportunity.

  Birkie� Fever

Three Generation Tradition

By Leah Rebne

Birkie Fever September68, the number you get when you add up the years that my family and I have been participating in the American Birkebeiner events.  Team Sturdy Women, as we now call ourselves, consists of my mom, Wendy, my aunt, Kate, my grandma, Judi, and me.

It all started with my grandma.  Years ago, she decided to ski her first Birkie.  Now, 26 years later, she is still going strong.  (This year will be her 26th Birkie!)  She is now a member of the Birchleggings club, and is extremely proud of it.  If it wasn't for her strength and determination, nobody in our family would be doing the Birkie, today.

As for my mom, she will be skiing her 17th Birkie. A while back, my grandma convinced her to ski the Birkie. (She wouldn't allow her to do just the Kortelopet. My grandma said that if she could to the whole thing, so could.......continue reading, click here.

Share Your Birkie Fever Story

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 [email protected]. 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

Fitness: The Foundation of the "Foundation"

By Jay Tapper

The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation has three parts to their mission statement. The first mission is, "To promote and conduct the finest international cross country ski competition." The second is, "To serve as good stewards of the "Birkie Trail". Can you guess the third mission?  Hmmm!  Times up!

The third mission is, "To support health and active lifestyles among skiers of all ages." The Foundation's success regarding the trail and race may allow them to consider expanding this mission beyond just skiers to, "Supporting the healthy and active lifestyles of all." as the trail also serves as a fitness "arena" for hiking, biking, running and new events like the Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek.  One could debate...Click here to continue reading. 

Jay TapperFitness In 5 Weekly Radio Program
Tune in to WOJB 88.9 FM every Friday at 10:45 a.m. Jay and long time Birkie skier Jacque Lindskoog present a Fitness in 5 tip of the week.
This week's program: Home Exercise Options for Building Strength. Don't miss a single episode of Fitness in 5! Stream it live by clicking here.
Learn more about Fitness in 5, click here.

Jay Tapper
is owner of ActivEdge LLC.  ActivEdge specializes in safety, fitness, and ergonomic programs for business and industry. ActivEdge also provides personal training services. Jay is a NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Corrective Exercise Specialist.  For further information contact Jay at 218-393-8767 or

 What's Next?
Mark Your Calendars for the 37th American Birkebeiner�: Feb. 25-27, 2010

From the Barnebirkie to the Birkebeiner, this citizen's ski race features something for everyone. Watch for 37th anniversary details in upcoming issues of Carpe Skiem and online at

About the Birkie�

From February 25-27, 2010, 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 37th 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.

Live the Birkie�

Upcoming Events

2009 American Birkebeiner Trail Run, Relay and Trek

Saturday, September 26, 2009

2010 BirkieTour
Saturday, January 23, 2010

2010 American Birkebeiner Events

Thursday, February 25 - Saturday, February 27, 2010

For more information visit