Is this YOUR YEAR to ski the Kortelopet?

Have you longed to challenge yourself in a brand new way? Can you imagine the exhilaration of skiing a 29 kilometer race? Do you want to discover what Birkie Fever is all about?If you answered yes to any of these questions, the Kortelopet is the race for you…and NOW is the time to take the challenge and ski the adventure!

For 2018 Kortelopet skiers will experience a better race course with less congestion, a memorable finish line experience, and the recognition they deserve for skiing an amazing 29 kilometer race!  Imagine skiing up and over the iconic International Bridge to the sounds of ringing cowbells and cheering crowds as you ski toward the finish line on the snow-covered Main Street of Hayward, Wisconsin.  Now, for the first time, families and friends who have skiers participating in the Birkie, Korte and Prince Haakon have the opportunity to cheer each other on during their respective races.  Spectators, too, will enjoy the celebratory, festival-like atmosphere, food, and music in downtown Hayward.  We hope to see you in 2018!

The Kortelopet:

  • Spans 29 kilometers from the OO Trailhead to Downtown Hayward
  • Attracts 3,000 skiers who want the challenge and excitement of a shorter-distance race


Registration Will Open on May 1!

Help the ABSF to Go Green!

As a participant in the 2018 Birkie, Korte, or Prince Haakon, and with a $35 donation during the event registration process, you will receive this reusable, exclusive Birkie gear bag!

  • The Birkie gear bag will be used in lieu of the white or yellow plastic bag you would normally receive at bib pick-up.
  • The $125 value Birkie gear bag is available only while supplies last and only during the registration process.
  • The reusable Birkie gear bag is yours to keep and use on your year-round adventures.
  • Your $35 donation, and use of the Birkie gear bag, will help reduce the amount of waste generated from the event.
  • Only this gear bag or the provided yellow or white plastic bag will be accepted at bag drop-off on race day.
  • Thank you for helping the Birkie to go green!
  • Dimensions:  26.5 x 10.5 x 12.5 with backpack straps
  • The Birkie gear bag is a slightly larger version of that used by the US Ski Team!  Includes a special clear pocket on the top of the bag for your bib number!

Birkie Gear Bag

Wave Placement


The American Birkebeiner and Kortelopet utilizes a seeded start structure for four of its events:  Birkebeiner Skate, Birkebeiner Classic, Kortelopet Skate, and Kortelopet Classic.  Participants are seeded into starting waves based on their race history.  The first priority for wave placement is your best result from 2014 to 2016 Birkie events for the same event which you are registering for (see the Wave Seeding Criteria tables below).  If you do not have a finish time for that specific event from those years, but do have a finish time from any of the other three seeded Birkie events in the same time period, you will be placed in a wave based on the best finish result from that event, plus or minus an adjustment factor which accounts for the historical difference in the strength of competition between the races (see the Event Adjustment Factor table below).  If you have participated in multiple other Birkie events in the past, wave placement criteria will first use results from a similar distance race, then from a similar technique.   Participants who do not have a Birkie event finish time from those years will be placed in the last wave.

The Korte also has two special waves, U20 and Wave 70, for younger and older skiers. See the details for these waves below.


Kortelopet Skate Wave Seeding Criteria

Korte Skate2016 Finish Time2016 PBE2015 Finish Time2015 PBE2014 Finish Time2014 PBE
Wave 1up to 1:43:16Up to 64%Up to 2:05:16Up to 74%Up to 2:23:00Up to 99%
Wave 21:43:17 to 2:19:4165% to 122%2:05:17 to 2:50:2275% to 137%2:23:01 to 3:15:22100% to 172%
Wave 32:19:42 and up123% and Up2:50:23 and up138% and Up3:15:23 and Up173% and Up
Wave 4No time in 2014-2016No time in 2014-2016No time in 2014-2016

Korte Classic Wave Seeding Criteria

Korte Classic2016 Finish Time2016 PBE2015 Finish Time2015 PBE2014 Finish Time2014 PBE
Wave 1Up to 2:37:18Up to 114%Up to 2:37:44Up to 91%Up To 2:45:07Up to 116%
Wave 22:37:19 to 3:29:24115% to 185%2:37:45 to 3:36:4892% to 163%2:45:08 to 3:46:42117% to 197%
Wave 33:29:25 and Up186% and Up3:36:49 and up164% and Up3:46:43 and Up198% and Up
Wave 4No time in 2014 to 2016No time in 2014 to 2016No time in 2014 to 2016

Event Adjustment Factors

Event You are Registering For in 2017Using Previous Birkie Skate ResultUsing Previous Birkie Classic ResultUsing Previous Korte Skate ResultUsing Previous Korte Classic Result
Birkie Skate0+ 8 %+ 15 %+ 15 %
Birkie Classic- 8 %0+ 8%+ 8 %
Korte Skate- 15 %- 7 %00
Korte Classic- 15 %- 7 %00

U20 Wave for Junior Racers

If you are a skier age 13 to 20 you will be assigned to start the Kortelopet in the U20 Classic or U20 Skate Waves. These wave will be the first to start and feature the same color bib as the Birkie Elite Waves.  If you are a junior skier and do not want to ski in the U20 wave contact and you will be placed in a wave based on the normal seeding process.

Registration for U20 Wave will remain open until the Wave capacity of 300 is reached or until January 26, 2018.

Wave 70

The mission of the American Birkebeiner Foundation includes supporting healthy and active lifestyles among people of ages and abilities. Cross country skiing is a lifestyle sport that allows people to stay active and healthy into their later years. Each year the Kortelopet provides an opportunity to celebrate this for over one hundred skiers over the age of seventy! We recognize these skiers with a special bib and special wave.

Transfer Between Races

Participants may transfer their entry between Korte and Birkie and or between Skate and Classic at any time until 4:00pm Central Time on January 26, 2018. A transfer fee of $15 plus any difference in entry fee will be applied.

Click here to make a transfer request.

Wave Placement Upgrades

All Wave Upgrade Requests made for the 2017 Races will be honored for 2018 without out additional fee however, all requests must be resubmitted here.

Participants may utilize the result from the list of qualifier competitions to improve on their placement from the above criteria. Similar to the comparison between the American Birkebeiner events, the results of the qualifiers will be adjusted based on the strength of competition, distance, and course elevation profile.

You may request to use a race result from the following list to improve your wave placement. Follow these steps to see if you are eligible for an upgrade:

  1. Determine your percent back in the qualifier race. Divide your time back from the winner (in minutes) by the winners time (in minutes), then multiple this value by 100. (example: your time 2:36, winning time 2:00; 36 minutes/120 minutes = 0.3 x 100 = 30% back)
  2. Determine your Percent Back Equivalency (PBE). Add your percent back to the qualifier race’s Adjustment Factor, which is found on the Qualifier List. PBE = Your % Back + Adjustment Factor
  3. Determine where your PBE would place you. Look up your PBE in the 2016 column of the Wave Seeding Table of the race for which you are registered. (Example: A PBE of 87% will place you in Wave 4 for Birkie Skate or Wave 3 for Birkie Classic or Wave 1 Korte Classic or Wave 2 Korte Skate)
  4. Request an upgrade only if your PBE will place you in a lower wave. Click here to make a wave and/or technique change request. Make sure you have completed steps 1-3 before calling. All requests will be charged a $15 service fee. Wave upgrades are subject to availability, if the wave that you qualify for is full, you will be assigned to the next wave with space available.

Click Here to View the 2018 Qualifier Races


Bib Pickup

Pre-Race Bib Pickup: Thursday, February 22

At the Birkie Expo, Hayward High School, Greenwood Lane

  • 1:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Click Here for “Expo Preview”

Race Day Bib Pick Up: Friday, February 23

In the big tent at the Kortelopet Start

  •  9:00 am to 11:30 am

Start Wave Schedule

Race Schedule:  Friday, February 23

WaveStart TimeBib Color
U20 Boys Skate10:45Red, White and Blue
U20 Girls Skate10:50Pink
U20 Boys Classic10:55Red, White & Blue
U20 Girls Classic11:00Pink
Wave 7011:05Dark Red
Wave 1 Classic11:15Blue
Wave 1 Skate11:20Blue
Wave 2 Classic11:25Red
Wave 2 Skate11:30Red
Wave 3 Classic11:35Lt Blue
Wave 3 Skate11:40Lt Blue
Wave 4 Classic11:45Dark Green
Wave 4 Skate11:50Dark Green

Race Policies

The race is run according to the rules and regulations of the FIS and any special requirements stated in the entry form, Birch Scroll, this web site, and participant race instructions. Offenses against any of these rules may lead to disqualification for current or future events and the forfeiture of any and all awards.

All participants in the Birkebeiner must be 18 years of age by February 23, 2018. Kortelopet skiers must be 13 years of age by February 23,2018. There are no refunds allowed for any reason including race cancellation. Entry fees are non-transferable between individuals or to future races.

Participants who complete an event in for which they are not registered (for example – complete the Birkie when they are registered for Korte, or ski the skate course when they registered for classic) will be credited for completing the race but will not be given a finish time, will not be eligible for awards and will not be included in the official results.

Click here for policies for using the clothing transport from the start to the finish Clothing Bag Procedures

Click here for the Participant Rules.

Course Information

Korte Elevation Profile

Korte/Prince Haakon Course MapClick the image above for PDF map.


Kortelopet Skate and Classic Overall Awards

The top top three male and female skate finishers in both skate and classic will be awarded Championship plaques at the Kortelopet Award Ceremony in the Celebration Plaza in Hayward at 12:30 pm on Friday. The overall awards are based on the net finish time (finish arrival time minus start time).

U20 Overall Awards

The top three finishers for the 13 to 19 year old girls and boys in both skate and classic will be awarded the Championship plaques at the Kortelopet Award Ceremony in the Celebration Plaza in Hayward at 12:30 pm on Friday. The U20 overall awards are based on the first to cross the finish line. U20 skiers are eligible for both the U20 Overall and Korte Overall Awards.

U20 Scholarship Awards

The top five boy’s and girl’s finishers in the Korte Skate and Korte Classic will receive a scholarship that can be applied to USSA or Regional Partner training camps or competition trips. Eligible programs include: National Training Group Camps, Regional Elite Group Camps, Regional Open Camps; World Junior Championships; U18 Scandinavian Cup Trip, OPA Cup Trip; USA Junior National Championships; NENSA U16 Championships.

Scholarship Amounts are:

  • 1st Place $500
  • 2nd Place $400
  • 3rd Place $300
  • 4th Place $200
  • 5th Place $100

Finisher Recondition

Skiers finishing their first Kortelopet will receive a Medal at the Finish.

Skiers finishing their second or greater Korte will receive a pin indication the number of Kortelopets they have finished.

Age Class Awards

Age class awards will be awarded to the top three males and females, in both the freestyle and classic races, in each of the following age classes. Awards are based on the participants net time (finish arrival time minus start time).

13-14, 15-16, 17-18, 19-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70-74, 75-79, 80-84, and 85-89.

10 Year Recognition

Kortelopet Skiers who finish their 10th race will be rewarded with a personalized commemorative plaque.


Worldloppet is an international association of long distance ski races, created in 1979 from the inspiration of American Birkebeiner creator, Tony Wise. The Birkie is among the nine races that comprised the founding events, which have grown to 20 races on five continents.

Worldloppet Ambassadors

There are many Birkie Skiers who have experience traveling to races around the globe. If you are interested in a particular race or just about the WL in general, we can connect you with someone who can share their experience with you and help to plan a trip. Click Here to submit an inquiry.


Tens of thousands of skiers around the world record their finishes of the Worldloppet Competitions in a special Passport. Finishers of the Korte  Skate or Classic can have their passport stamped for Worldmaster Silver credit  or purchase a new passport  following the race on Saturday or on Sunday.

Worldloppet passports may also be purchased on-line by clicking HERE. If you have completed a Birkie or Korte  in the past, you can request that a stamped passport be mailed to you at any time. Cost of new passports are $35.

Worldloppet Breakfast

All are welcome to join Worldloppet Skiers, Delegates from other Worldloppet Competitions ,and honored guests at the Worldloppet Breakfast held 8:00 am, Friday, February 23th , at Flat Creek Inn & Suites. Register for the Breakfast HERE.


For lodging information, see our Lodging page.


Skiers, whether elite or citizen, count on spectators to cheer them on as they set their sights on the finish line. Just when they think they’re fading, spectators provide an emotional lift that encourages them along their way. Catch Korte Fever!

Watch, cheer and ring cowbells for skiers.

Join the celebration  at the People’s Bank Midwest Celebration Plaza on Main Street between 3rd and 4th Streets beginning at 10:00 am. The first finishers are welcomed with the ringing of the church bells as they come off of Lake Hayward on to Main Street at approximately noon. Good viewing is possible along the length on Main Street.
Parking is available at designated parking lots with shuttle service throughout the day. There is limited street parking with in the downtown area, respect the parking direction signs and utilize the parking lots.