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September 7, 2011
                                 Volume 9 - Issue 11
Be Ready for Cooler Weather!
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Mark your calendars for the 39th American Birkebeiner® from
Feb.  23-25, 2012!

The 2012 events include the 50K Birkie Skate, 54K Birkie Classic sponsored by Becker Law, and 23K Kortelopet Skate and Classic races sponsored by Marshfield Clinic of Hayward. 


Birkie 2012 also features shorter races, events and festivities for:

  • men, women, teens and kids
  • families
  • skijor enthusiasts 
  • 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! 


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. 24, 2011

The 2011 American Birkebeiner Trail Run includes you choice of: 

  • 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 Birkie Trail Run, Relay or Trek. 




January 21, 2012  

Come out, ski and enjoy the Birkie and Birkie Classic Trails and participate in the BirkieTour!

The tour is an untimed, non-competitive, "open-track" event open to skiers age 13 and older.
  Birkie & Korte Tour Distances
Registration will be available this Spring!

Learn more visit 

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

February 23-25, 2012


 In our house, winter is a journey whose destination is the BIRKIE!   


"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

For almost thirty years, it has been a blessing in my life! THANK YOU.

You guys run a world class event. It is the most fun you can have while torturing yourself.

See you at the start, race you the finish...hoping to have the time of my life along the way!
-Jim Reker

To me the day is close to a religious 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.

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

THANK YOU to all the wonderful people who make this race possible!!!
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the volunteers!

Love skiing with over 8000 of my closest friends.


BIG THANK YOU to the Birkie staff and volunteers and the citizens of Hayward and Cable for making this wonderful event possible and a BIG THANK YOU to the fans for making the experience of skiing up Main Street second to none.

~Chris Jones



Thank you for giving us all something to focus on all winter long!



Birkie day is the gretest day of the year in my mind, ranking above Christmas, birthdays, anniversaries, Packer Sundays, Badger Saturdays, opening day of fishing season and even ahead of opening day of gun deer season.  


Birkie day is the ultimate Wisconsin experience.



The best organized 'signature' sports event I have ever been involved in. Excellent experience!!! Thanks to all the volunteers!!! They are wonderful!!!




 Skier Praise for
2011 Birkie Events!



Love this event, love the organization, love all the people who are involved. Thanks! Keep up the good work.



Birkie is an A+ event and I hope to be back next year!



A million thank you's to all the outstanding volunteers is not enough. They are the reason the race continues.



This was my first Birkie and it was AWESOME!!! I will definitely be back next year and many years to come...I want my purple bib!!



Extremely well organized, volunteers and locals really make you feel welcome.



GREAT JOB everyone. Really impressive series of events for three days.



The Birkie was an epic race! I hope I can be back next year with more experience, more training,  

and better technique.
(And hopefully warmer weather!)



Best organized event I have ever done. Volunteers are great people. Well done!



This was my first year and it will not be my last. It was a great challenge and I am all ready thinking about what I can do to improve
my time for next year!
Bravo and thank you very much!



I really enjoyed my first Korte. Thanks to all the volunteers and event staff!



Another great year of Birkie events. Thank you all so much for your efforts. See you next year.



I would like to thank all who made this race possible and to all the volunteers who gave their time and
braved the cold.



This was my first endurance race of any kind, and I had a blast! Everything was great.
Thanks for the memories!!



Fantastic event - Great people - great organization and lots of fun!





Thanks for a wonderful family event!



I'm hooked on the Birkie now.
Many thanks!

  Greetings from the Birkie®


Hi Skiers and Friends!


The Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek is coming up quickly. We are looking forward to having a record 800 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 24.


Our preparations for the 2012 Birkie continue. More than 5,600 skiers are already registered for the Birkie, Kortelopet, and Prince Haakon 12K, with several of the early waves filling quickly!


We have another Volunteer Trail Work Morning this Saturday, September 10, from 8:30 until noon, meeting at the Mosquito Brook trailhead. We will be fixing a few erosion problems on the Birkie Trail. Please contact me if you can help. More volunteers make the work go quickly!  


As always, we welcome your comments, and you can reach me at   


Stay fit and see you on the trails,


Ned Zuelsdorff

Executive Director



Next Birkie Event

Birkie Trail Run & Trek

Jan Guenther - 2010 WinnerMarathon / Women
Saturday, September 24

Less than three weeks away! Join us for the ninth annual Birkie Trail Run & Trek on September 24. Whether you run, walk, team relay, or trek, there is something for everyone, including awards for top finishers and age class winners, plus lots of door prizes. This is a beautiful time of year on the fantastic Birkie Trail. 

Next Fee Change:

Save when you register by Sept. 17.

Choose from these events:

Want Training Tips for These Events?  See "Birkie Training" section, below.

Please Note:
There will be no race day registration for the Birkie Trail Run & Trek events. You may, however, register at the Birkie office, Hayward, all day Friday, September 23, from 8 am to 8 pm.   


Birkie Trail Run & Trek Officially Part of:
National Public Lands Day

National Public Lands Day (NPLD) is the nation's largest, single-day volunteer event for public lands in the United States. In 2011, NPLD will be held on September 24, 2011. The Birkie was invited to be part of this national designation because the  Birkie Trail Run & Trek takes place on the same day; the Birkie Trail itself is on County Lands; and both our event and our entire Birkie Trail system are supported by a growing number of loyal volunteers.

You can be part of this National Public Lands Day celebration by either participating in a Birkie Trail Run & Trek event, or by volunteering at the event. Please contact or call 715-634-5025 for details.   


NPLD and the "Let's Move Outside" initiative are both part of the outreach of The National Environmental Education Foundation, a non-partison group based in Washington, D.C. Learn more on the Birkie website. 

Trail Run & Trek -- Training!

AMarathonTrainingPart-1-MattOPhotorticle #3: The Third and Final in This Series:

How t
o Train for the Birkie Trail Run
Marathon & Half Marathon - Sept. 24  

By Matt Ostrander


 PART THREE - "Race Day Tips" 


Click Here to Read This Article
We've received great feedback on these training articles by Matt Ostrander, veteran competitor in trail marathons and ultras who trains on the Birkie Trail--a LOT.  Get his wealth of knowledge and down-to-earth advice on everything from handling those Birkie hills and pacing yourself on this challenging course, to avoiding leg cramps and running a race you will enjoy! Not registered yet? Do it. With Matt's guidance, you'll be ready for either the Birkie Birkie Trail Marathon or Half Marathon on September 24.   



Article #3: The Third and Final in This Series:

Training to Nordic Walk the Birkie Trek
Event -
Sept. 24  

By Linda Lemke  


PART THREE - "The Last Few Weeks of Training" 


Click Here to Read This Article   

Linda Lemke has a huge following. To date she has introduced more than 2,500 individuals to Nordic Walking. She leads groups in the Twin Cities, MN, area, travels to lead corporate training events, and has been featured on the CBS Early Show. In this, her third and final installment in her training article series for the Birkie, she shares why this type of event is called "The People's Walk" and how to train then taper to truly enjoy the Birkie Trek - Nordic Walk on September 24.
 Event Registration

Sign Up for Birkie 2012


The next registration fee deadline is November 30. Save when you register on or before that date. Click on the following links to register online or to download a printable form to mail or fax.

Important - Wave Placement:

Wave placement for the Birkie and Kortelopet is based on a first received, first placed basis. Please note that waves 1 through 4 are filling fast. If your wave fills, you will be placed in the next available wave.


New: On the printed race registration form, you will now find the Emergency Contact Information on the back of the form as part of the Waiver. Please be sure to complete this section before mailing or faxing the form.


  Birkie® News


WINNER! Official Birkie T-Shirt Design Contest 

After more than 4,000 votes, the winner of the Birkie 2012 T-Shirt Design Contest is Charlie Rietschel of Andover, MN. We received some amazing entries in our third annual Birkie T-shirt design competition. From all the designs submitted, the choices were narrowed down to the top three. Then we sent the word out to our Birkie participants, friends and family to vote for their favorite. The voting took place for one week, from September 24-31. Charlie Rietschel's design immediately stood out as the clear favorite and maintained its lead for the entire week of voting. See voting results and Comments from the winner.

Warrior Contest:  

Enter to Ski the Birkie as the 2012 Warrior Trio    

The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation is searching for two 

tough cross country skiers to dress as Birkebeiner warriors and trek 54 kilometers from Cable to Hayward on Saturday, Feb. 25, 2012.

In addition to searching for two Birkie warriors, the ABSF is also looking again for a skier to depict Inga, the mother of the baby Prince. Like the Warriors, Inga will wear traditional clothing and ski on wooden skis.

Interested in applying? Click Here for details and to enter.
YoungSkierKortie Young Skier Program Grants:
Apply by October 1st

Start thinking about applying for one of the fifteen Young Skier Program grants for 2011. Each of these $1,000 grants will be awarded to programs that
promote cross country skiing as a fun, energetic activity that is part of an active and healthy lifestyle. To date the American Birkebeiner has awarded over $175,000 to programs across the United States.

Get complete details and an application, plus see a list of past recipients. Apply by October 1.


  Get More Updates

Facebook-Birkie Image
Get more stories and updates--as they happen. Check out our training videos, stories, photos, and even post your own favorite Birkie photos, favorite training spots in your area, and more.  

Check out today's post on the Official Birkie Facebook page.

American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation 

Election Results of the 2011 Annual Meeting

The ABSF welcomes two new Board members and three returning members. The two new Board members elected to serve are Jane Bidwell and John Garrett. Exisiting Board members who were re-elected are Scott Chapin, John Kotar, and Dennis Kruse. The annual meeting was held August 13
at Telemark Resort, Cable, WI. WarriorTwins

Next Board Meeting:

September 19 at 4:00 pm Sherman & Ruth Weiss Community Library on Highway 27/77 in Hayward.
Questions, call 715-634-5025

Become a ABSF Member

The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation is a membership organization. There are membership levels for individuals, families, and businesses. To learn more about becoming a member,   

Click Here.  
  Birkie Trail Friends

The Story Behind the Birkie 24K Marker       


This monthly feature is where we highlight the sponsors behind all those K-marker plaques and how you can become a "Birkie Trail Friend" too.

Grand Opening of the Makwa Trail at "OO" just before the 24K Birkie Marker


Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association


           Story by Ron Bergin


The Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association (CAMBA) has had a presence in the Birkie Trail corridor since the its inception in 1993. Several segments of the Birkie Trail have actually been adopted as mountain bike routes and incorporated into the CAMBA system. The CAMBA singletrack trails have also been enthusiastically embraced by trail runners, hikers and snowshoers ... Continue reading. 


 Annual Birkie Trail maintenance now exceeds $150,000 each year. The Birkie Trail Friends program helps significantly. Many Birkie and Kortie kilometer markers have been sponsored, but more Ks are still available or up for renewal. Learn more at Birkie Trail Friends

  Birkie® Fever

BirkieFever-ShirleySmith "Dreaming About Doing

 the Birkie for 33 Years"

          1974 - 2009  

By Shirley Smith

In 1974 cross-country skiing had taken hold in the United States, and as a high school senior in Marshall, Wisconsin, I wanted to try it. I didn't know a soul who did it--everyone I knew was into snowmobiling, but that didn't stop me from purchasing some beautiful wooden Asnes touring skis, a pair of boots, bamboo poles with baskets big enough to take to market, a mysterious assortment of waxes, and a book on what to do with it all.  

A new event was being held up north in Wisconsin ... It sounded thrilling: lots of people, including women, skiing for miles and miles (officially measured in the exotic term "kilometers") ... Athletes did it, but "citizens" could, too, and I wanted to be part of it. But, first I had to learn how to ski ... Continue reading

Send us your Birkie Fever story. Whether you are a skier, spectator, or volunteer, we want to hear from you. Send to  

  Birkie® Training   

"FitnessIn5-Video-ForearmHandStrength Fitness in 5" Video     

By Jay Tapper

Click Here for Jay's Latest Videos

If you haven't yet watched Jay Tapper's "Fitness in 5" videos, now's the time. Each of these "Birkie-Bites" gives you a very finessed strength, balance, or flexibility technique. Jay takes the approach that it is the little things that make the biggest difference. You get simple yet powerful ways to improve your fitness, literally from head to toe, in less than 5 minutes a day. 


Listen to Jay live on WOJB 88.9 FM, Friday mornings at 10:45.      



Period5-VideoThumbnail2 Birkie Ski Training Plan - Aug./Sept.     

By Bill Pierce 

Click Here for Bill's Training Plan & Video 


Strength training is the emphasis of this month's Birkie Training Plan and Video by Bill Pierce. Bill's videos are both highly instructional and inspirational. You see great roller skiing technique and watch strength-building sessions, most of which you can duplicate at home with basic weights and bands. These videos feature and are produced by the elite skiers Bill works with year round. There are two Birkie Training Plans posted each month: One is for beginner to intermediate skiers, and one is for intermediate to advanced skiers.  

 Important Dates & Events
September 10        Trail Maintenance / Work Day

                    17        Next Registration Fee Deadline - Birkie Trail Run & Trek Events

                    19        ABSF Monthly Board Meeting - September
Birkie Trail Run, Relay & Trek

October        1        Young Skier Program Grant - Application Deadline

November  30
        Next Registration Fee Deadline - All Events

January 21, 2012  
Birkie Tour

February 23-25      Birkie 2012
 The Birkie®

The Birkie is a year-round lifestyle choice for thousands of outdoor fitness enthusiasts of all levels. From its signature ski race--the legendary American Birkebeiner--the Birkie has grown into an exciting array of fitness and recreational opportunities. The 88-kilometer Birkie Trail system attracts skiers, runners, bikers, trekkers, and hikers, from casual day-trippers to elite superstars. Located near Hayward and Cable, Wisconsin, the Birkie is now an outdoor sports mecca, a series of great races, a fitness destination, and a Lifestyle. Ski . Run . Live!

Becker Law2009 Birkie Trail Run Half