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!

Summer 2016 will bring improvements to the new Kortelopet start area at the “OO” trailhead.  And, in 2017, 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 2017!

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 is Closed.

*In 2017, skiers interested in skiing the Korte on Friday and the Birkie on Saturday can register for both races!

Please register under the same name every year in order to keep track of your previous race finishes.  If you are unsure of the name you have previously registered under, please call the Birkie office at 715-634-5025 or email

 Through July 7July 8 through Sept 8Sept 9 through Nov 3Nov 4 until Closed
U20 Kortelopet - 20 years of age & under$95$105$115$130

All participants must be 13 years of age or older on race day to register for the Kortelopet.

Entry Scholarship for Wisconsin Student Athletes

Middle school or high school students who are on a ski team in Wisconsin and have not previously skied a Kortelopet may be eligible for a free race entry provided by the Wisconsin Nordic Network. Contact your school team coach to apply. The Korte Scholarship is made possible by donations, contact WINN to donate and send a kid to the Korte!

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 the past 3 years for the same Birkie 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 in the previous 3 years, but do have a finish time from another Birkie event 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 3 years, 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 the previous 3 years will be placed in the last wave. Wave placement criteria are found below.

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

*Please note, these wave seeding tables have been adjusted slightly since initially published in the Birch Scroll.  We apologize for any confusion.  Please call the office with any questions at 715-634-5025 ext. 1.

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

New U20 Wave for Junior Racers

If you are a skier age 13 to 20 you are eligible 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 would like to ski this wave, select the U20 Kortelopet event at registration. If you want to ski in a later wave, select the Kortelopet event and you will be place 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 15, 2017.

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 27, 2017. A transfer fee of $15 plus any difference in entry fee will be applied.
Click here to make a transfer request.

Wave Placement Upgrades

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 2017 Qualifier Races

Bib Pickup

Pre-Race Bib Pickup: Thursday, February 23

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 24

In the big tent at the Kortelopet Start

  •  9:00 am to 10:30 am

Start Wave Schedule

Race Schedule:  Friday, February 24

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

Course Information

Korte Elevation Profile


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 noon 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 noon 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.