Carpe Skiem Header
December 2009
                                         Volume 7 - Issue 14

Birkie Quick Links
On-line Registration
Skier Confirmation
Birkie Merchandise
About Us

Online Registration Now Available for All Events!
Visit Events, select your event and choose the online registration option.

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Birkie on Facebook®

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

Mark your calendars for the 37th American Birkebeiner
® from
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.

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...Ski.Run.Live!

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. 25, 2010

The 2010 American Birkebeiner Trail Run includes you choice of:

  • NEW! 26.2 mile Individual Marathon
  • 26.2 mile Marathon Relay
  • 13.1 mile Individual Half Marathon
  • 13.1 mile 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!!!
  Greetings from the Birkie®!

Hi Skiers and Friends!

We received 5-8" of snow last night and this morning as winter arrived throughout the region. We have begun rolling and grooming the Birkie Trail system. It's skiable but we are envious of the snow and skiing that's arrived further south. We will catch up! It's nice to see the widespread snow allowing many of you to get out and prepare for the 37th Birkie in February.

You are obviously thinking about the Birkie as we're on record pace for registrations with almost 5,900 of you already registered, more than 1,400 ahead of last year at this time. In fact, Skate Waves 2 and 3 are filling quickly and near closing. As you'd expect we're working on putting the 2010 Birkie together to give you the best event we possibly can.

Skiers are also signing up for the new BirkieTour. This fun event offers something for everyone. It's your chance to spend a great day with family and friends on this famous trail.

We hope you enjoyed the Pre-Race Birch Scroll. Keep watching for more updates.

Stay fit,
Ned Zuelsdorff
Executive Director
[email protected]

  Birkie News®
Three Skiers & A Baby Will Re-Enact 800-Year-Old Birkebeiner Legend

David, Josie & Karl NelsonThe search for three cross country skiers and a baby to re-enact the 800-year-old legend that inspired the creation of the American Birkebeiner cross country ski race from Cable to Hayward, Wis. is over.

During the 37th anniversary on Saturday, February 27, 2010, brothers David and Grant Nelson will assume the roles of Torstein and Skervald, the Birkebeiner warriors who rescued Prince Haakon (Hō-ken) during the Norwegian Civil War in 1206.

The two Viking warriors, called "Birkebeiners" for the protective birch bark leggings they wore, skied more than 50 kilometers through rugged mountains and forested terrain smuggling the infant son of King Syverresson and Inga of Vartieg from Lillehammer to safety in the town of Trondheim.

The rescued prince became one of the most popular kings in Norwegian history, and the Birkebeiner soldiers became a Norwegian symbol of courage, perseverance and character in the face of adversity.

David's wife, Josie Nelson will dress as Inga from Varteig, mother of Prince Haakon, while their 13-month old son Karl will assume the role of the cherished prince.

Josie clothing...Continue here. _________________________________________________________________

2009 Birkie Trail Run HalfSki the First Annual BirkieTour on January 23rd

The NEW BirkieTour is scheduled for Saturday, January 23rd and will provide racers and non-racers a relaxed day on the Birkie Trail in an "open track," untimed, non-competitive "tour."

Skiers may choose from a variety of event distances between 22-51K. The event is freestyle and tour trails will be groomed for classic and skate skiing.

Additional features include:
  • Post Race Food and Refreshments
  • Participant T-Shirts and Pins
  • Worldloppet Credit
  • Bus Transportation
Register online, print a registration or find more information here.

Looking for a Tax Deduction? Support the Birkie® Trail

Most of you have been on the Birkie Trails many times and appreciate what a great and challenging trail it is. Many of you have also had the chance to ski on portions of the Birkie Classic Trail which has now been completed reaching "OO". We love these trails and do what we can to protect, maintain, and improve the trails throughout the year and groom them to perfection in the Winter. You can help us is this effort by becoming a "Birkie Trail Friend" and sponsor one of the kilometers and get a tax deduction yet this year. Thirty four individuals, families, businesses, organizations and groups of friends have already done this!

It's easy and there are several Birkie and Birkie Classic Trail Ks looking for a Sponsor. More information is available here. Help us continue to give you and other silent sports enthusiasts the best trail possible.


2009 Birkie Trail Run HalfSkiers for Cures Pins Available Soon!

The 2010 Skiers for Cures pins shown here will be available next week. The cost of the pin is $20 with proceeds going to the National MS Society. This great pin designed by Birkie Skier, Kay Lum can be purchased online, in person at the Birkie Office or at the National MS Society Booth at the Birkie Skier Expo. In addition to purchasing a fun pin to support a great cause you will also be entered into a raffle drawing with wonderful prizes including free entries for the 2011 Birkie or Kortelopet.

Raise Funds and Be Eligible for Prizes
Interested in raising money for the Skiers for Cures program? Get started now - click here.

For each $250 raised the fundraiser will have their name entered in a raffle drawing for great getaways at area resorts and other items including special prizes donated by skiing legend Bjorn Daehlie. More on that soon!

Team Competition Returns to 2010 Birkie

There's nothing like the energy of a team to bring out the best in a group of athletes. The team spirit and camaraderie motivates men and women of all ages and fitness levels. Now there's an outlet for all that energy, training and motivation. The Team Competition is intended to be a fun addition to the American Birkebeiner.

The ABSF and Lake Superior College in Duluth, Minnesota will again present the Team Competition. For 2010 the Team Competition has been expanded to include an Open category for organization, e.g. businesses and club teams of men and women, regardless of age.

Team Divisions Include:

  • Juniors
  • College
  • Open
Get your friends together and visit the Team Competition page to get started.

Nikolai Petrovich Anikin Remembered

On Dec. 6, friends and family of former Soviet skiing legend Nikolai Anikin, who along with his wife became a cherished fixture of Midwest skiing, celebrated his life at Duluth's Snowflake ski area. Click here to read a profile of him and reminiscences from some 30 former colleagues and athletes, including Vladimir Smirnov and John Bauer.
Record Number of Entrants for 2010 Birkie

Did you participate in our online poll this past week? The poll asked:

Last year at this time 4390 skiers were registered in the Birkie, Korte and Prince Haakon. How many people are registered for 2010 now?

If you said 5813 then you are correct! Only 13% of the poll respondents selected this answer. Most thought it was 4926. As of today, Tuesday, December 9th there are 5875 registered skiers.

Participate in this week's poll by clicking here. Every Tuesday or Wednesday we will feature a new poll on the Home Page of the website (scroll down). Once you answer the poll you will see how fellow skiers responded.

Have a poll idea? Send ideas to [email protected].


Many Great Birkie Items for Under $25

2009 Birkie Trail Run HalfLooking for last minute Christmas items? Let us help! Our online store features great items like the 2010 Calendar pictured here. The 2010 Birkie Poster and Pin and the new Birkie Swix hat are all available for less than $25. To see the latest merchandise. you can visit Birkie Enterprises Online.

 The 2010 Birkie T-shirt is available in different colors and sleeve lengths. The shirt designed by Andy Wood can be purchased from Hidden Bay Graphics, click here to place your t-shirt order.

Proceeds from the sales of the 2010 Birkie Calendar and T-Shirts will benefit Young Skier Programs.

The Ultimate Virtual Birkie Experience

RaceMyRaceTM is the ultimate tool in online virtual race preparation. Enter your projected or past race results for running, biking, triathlon or Nordic skiing events to prepare for or re-live each race.

Created by Birkie Skier, Todd Goold, RaceMyRace promises to revolutionize race preparation. Skiers at all levels will benefit from the virutal training RaceMyRace offers. 

Visit to view your 2009 Birkie.

Upcoming Events

10th Annual 24 Hours at Telemark Ski Marathon- January 9-10, 2010

Freestyle, Classical 24-hour (or less) of fun at this relay event, 10 a.m. Saturday - 10 a.m. Sunday. There will be 3, 6, 12 and 24 hour categories for solo, duo and relay teams up to 6 skiers over a 5K loop on the Telemark Ski Trails in Cable, WI.  The course is fun and safe to ski both by day or night, and as usual will be exceptionally groomed.  We will be adding more women's and family oriented categories this year as our goal is have an event that is fun for skiers of all levels; whether you are an elite skier putting in some early season base km's or there to experience to camaraderie of Team competition.

As usual there will be a great swag bag for all participants and a huge awards and door prize give away held at the end of the event.  It is not a RACE it is A Happening.

For more info, contact [email protected] or 608-212-6912 or go for complete details.

USSA Super Tour - January 30-31, 2010 - Telemark Resort

The USSA SuperTour is the premier domestic race series for cross country skiing in the U.S. with 24 races at 11 venues around the nation.  Each race is sanctioned by USSA and historically offers the best field of racers and the best race "points" for those looking to improve their National Ranking List and FIS points which are used in part to choose our World Championship and Olympic Teams.

The USSA SuperTour offers a significant purse ($3800) of prize money for each day of racing to racers of both genders with $750 for 1st, $500 for 2nd, $250 for 3rd, $200 for 4th, $150 for 5th, and $100 for 6th.   This prize money goes a long way towards enticing the top athletes to participate and to help them sustain their racing careers.

This year USSA announced it will hold a USSA Masters SuperTour by scoring six of the existing USSA SuperTour races for masters racers in the 30's, 40's, 50's, 60's, 70's + divisions for season ending titles and prizes.  Got to cross country news for more information. 

  Birkie® Fever

It's All About Perspective

By Lisa Stein

Gary SlavikThis is a follow up article to "True Colors" about skier Gary Slavik which appeared in the Pre-Race Birch Scroll. We found inspiration and hope in Lisa's articles about her father. We hope you do too!

According to, perspective is "the state of one's ideas, the facts known to one, etc., in having a meaningful interrelationship." When we are able to gather facts and combine them with our own beliefs and feelings, we develop perspective. The concept of perspective is what allows us to use our unique life experiences and find our personal heros. It also allows us to.
.......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

Get Ready Using the Birkie Training Plan

This is a third article to help you organize your training plan in preparation for this year's Birkie. To view the previous articles please see October and November Training Articles. This training plan provides you with guidelines of what should be done leading up to the race so you have a great event from start to finish. Click here to continue reading.

About Central Cross Country Ski Association (CXC Skiing): Central Cross Country Association ("CXC") is recognized by the United States Ski and Snowboard Association ("USSA") as the Regional Organization governing cross country skiing in the 10 state Central Region of the United States. CXC provides an organization which enables athletes, coaches and officials to achieve excellence in cross country skiing through: EDUCATION, COOPERATION, COMMUNICATION, and COMPETITION. CXC oversees youth programs; supports the Junior Olympic Qualifying system, Central Collegiate Ski Association, and Senior/Master skiing; provides athletes', coaches' and officials' education; coordinates competitions; manages a full spectrum adaptive program for all individuals with physical disabilities; trains Olympic caliber athletes; and is the Midwest pipeline to the U.S. Ski Team and the U.S. Adaptive Ski Team. CXC is a 501c3 non profit corporation and gratefully accepts tax deductible donations for program enhancement.

 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.

Ski . Run . Live

Upcoming Events

2010 BirkieTour
Saturday, January 23, 2010

2010 American Birkebeiner Events

Thursday, February 25 - Saturday, February 27, 2010

For more information visit