The 107 kilometer Birkie Trail system attracts skiers, runners, bikers, trekkers, and hikers, from casual day-trippers to elite superstars.  The Birkie trail was built for all silent sports enthusiasts to enjoy. The non-profit 501(c)(3) American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation maintains 100% of the trail system.  Donations to help cover the annual maintenance costs are welcome. You can help with a personal donation which may be tax deductible (consult your tax professional) and by joining the Foundation.

Ski Trail Passes

Birkie Trail ski passes are required December – March to ski on any part of the 107 km American Birkebeiner Trail System.  100% of funds collected go toward our growing costs to maintain the trail.

Trail passes or parking passes for Birkie Trail use are not required April – November, however if you are using the CAMBA mountain bike trails, please consider dropping a donation into the yellow tubes!

Birkie Ski Trail Pass Information

Grooming Procedures/FAQ's

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Check out the Birkie Trail grooming procedures and FAQ’s:



Latest Trail Report

1.28.2015 (5:45am): Groomed from OO south to Hatchery – combing out the skate lane, the classic track is shallow. Trails are in good shape.  The base is thin, but the new snow covered up some of our emerging dark spots and organic debris…so the skiing south of OO is generally good.  Enjoy!
- chris and the groomers

1.27.2015 (5:45am): We got 2-3″ of new snow yesterday which really helped us out.  Groomed from “OO” north to the Powerlines on both the skate and classic trails, including the Birkie Ridge connector and loops at “OO”.  We were able to set a shallow classic track as well.  Tonight we will groom south to the Hatchery.  Enjoy the skiing!
- chris and the groomers

1.25.2015 (10:00am):   After the last 2 days of 35 degrees and the light mist, now the cooler temps over night, we have a very hard, icy trail.  Early this am we tried to scratch up the skate lane  for Boedecker loops (OO to Bedecker on Skate and Classic trails) and OO lit loops (made it a bit better- all rest of areas are very icy).  We lost more base these last two days and now have some dirt spots showing.  We are going to try and renovate the surface tonight, but now our biggest fear is the depth of the base with more warm temps on tap for Tues/ Wed and that we don’t bring up more dirt with the tiller.  Stay tuned to right here for updates to what we are doing as soon as we know.  We will start shoving on Monday the open spots in hopes of keeping them white so they don’t open up!  Think snow!!!
- chris and the groomers

1.23.2015 (6:00am):  With temps rising above zero again and possibly a precip mix, we will be staying off the trail until it cools down and we get some snow.  The trail remains in good condition.  The classic tracks are better north of OO compared to the southern end – the skating is good in both directions.   Enjoy the skiing!
- chris and the groomers

Real-Time Grooming Report

Find out what’s been groomed and when in real-time.

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Real-Time Grooming Reports by

Get the Birkie Trails App

Birkie Trails is the official app for the American Birkebeiner Ski Trail between Cable and Hayward, Wisconsin.

Included are a map (which will show your current location, and where you’ve skied), grooming report and tracking feature, showing time, distance and elevation gain.

Optionally, by using this app you can contribute to trail usage data, helping the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation manage and prioritize trail maintenance activities (grooming, trailwork, signage, etc).  Available for both iPhone and Android.

Get it on Google Play

screen322x572 Trail Reports Trail Reports

Trail Reports compiled by

Jan 28 - Birkie Trail (Hayward, WI)

Conditions: Fresh grooming on the skate lane, classic track a bit wobbly.
We skated from OO towards the high point and beyond today and were the second car in the lot! When we came out the lot near the chalet was almost full. The skate lane on the skate side was soft and slow, possibly because of my lack of wax. On the way back I took the classic trail and it was much more used and faster. Mother Nature is blowing some debris onto the trails and into the tracks, which were significantly faster than the skate deck was! The classic tracks were wobbly but fun. Well worth the drive from anywhere to ski!
Photos: Photoset available.
(Eve Graves)

Jan 27 - Birkie Trail (Hayward, WI)

I specifically ordered great trail conditions from the Executive Director to play hooky from work and ski. He delivered big time. The 2" of snow they received Sunday into Monday was very nicely groomed in. The compacted layer was silky smooth and so nice to ski on. You could tell there was some ice underneath but the snow was sticking well. A few dirty looking spots. The classic track looked phenominal in spots and pretty thin in others. Skied from Power Lines to High Point and from OO to 37km.
Photos: Photoset available.
(Ben Mullin)

Jan 27 - Birkie Trail (Hayward, WI)

Conditions: Very good, freshly groomed and no icy or dirty sections.
Skied the lighted loops at OO this morning. Fresh cord and a nice track. In some sections mine were the first tracks, except for tracks from a pair of wolves or very large coyotes that also seemed to enjoy the groomed trail.
(Tom Detzner)

Jan 25 - Birkie Trail (Hayward, WI)

Conditions: Very firm and fast, good base, wide and level, some minor shallow ruts, groomed from Bodecker to OO.
Skated out of Birkie Ridge to Bodecker and south this morning, the Birkie Trail north of Bodecker had been groomed before the thaw and was fast and firm as the over night temps froze everything up pretty solid. The air temps were great today, and plenty of sunshine and very little wind made the skiing atmosphere great. On the downhills, this skier was on the rivet many times trying to descend as the skis just wanted to run. When I got to Bodecker, I jumped on the Birkie Classic Trail for a bit and it was about the same. Earlier they had groomed Bodecker to OO and they were able to till up some snow. Still, the downhills were as fast as you wanted to go with little to no purchase and some snowplowing was in order now and then. Hardpack skis were the way to go but you still had to be very carefully at times... level and solid base, with plenty of good coverage, hoping for some more snow!
(David Martin)

Birkie Trailheads

  • Powerline – 4.5K
  • North End Cabin – Randysek Rd, two miles south from Cable
  • Timber Trail – 9K
  • Birkie Ridge – Highway 63 two miles north from Seeley
  • Boedecker – 18.5K
  • OO – 22.8K
  • Mosquito Brook – 38.1K
  • Hatchery – 44.3K

Trail Profile

The total climb on the Birkie Skate Course from the start line at Telemark to the finish line in Hayward (north to south) is 1,398 meters. The Birkie Classic Course’s total climb from the start line to the finish line is 21 meters less or 1,379 meters.

The Birkie Classic Trail which ends at OO has a total climb of 727 meters compared to the Birkie Trail’s total climb of 729 meters to that point. See chart to right for elevation break down.

Support the Trail


The Birkie Classic Trail – Building a Trail

In order to provide a better race experience for all skiers, the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation developed the Birkie Classic Trail. Construction for the new trail began in late 2006 and was completed in three stages by the Fall of 2008. The 27K Birkie Classic Trail was used in its entirety for the 2009 event with Classic Skiers enjoying their own trail from just past the Race Start to County Hwy. OO.

Construction cost for the 27K trail totaled $104,000, which was raised with the help of many generous donations from skiers, businesses, organizations and friends of the American Birkebeiner.

The trail was designed and laid out by ABSF Board member Dave Nelson of Hayward and Rhinelander. Jack Moin, Cable, who also is Trail Chief at Telemark was Trail Construction Chief for the entire project. The project was successful due to the efforts of these two men who donated many hours of their time. The trail was built with the help and hard work of many volunteers who came out to numerous work nights and days over the three years.

25KFix1_mediumThe 27K Classic Trail is 20’ in width, and results in the Birkie Classic Race being 4K longer than the existing Birkie Trail used for the Skate course. Elevations of both trails is very similar with the major difference being that the Classic Trail climbs and descents are more gradual, but longer, facilitating the Classic technique. The two courses come together at each of the food/aid stations and close enough to be visible at several points.

The Birkie Classic Trail is groomed for both classic and skate skiing through the winter, but will be groomed for classic skiing only on race day. The trail is available for hiking, trail running and mountain biking the remainder of the year. There are no plans at present to further extend the Birkie Classic Trail.

The Birkie Classic Trail was built to provide the following benefits:

  • The Classic Trail will be used by classic skiers on race day, with skate skiers following the existing Birkie Trail. This separation will provide better course conditions for all skiers on race day. Classic skiers will have the best tracks we can provide, and skate skiers will have more room since the Birkie Trail will not be tracked, except on downhills, through these sections.
  • The new trail has elevated the stature of the Birkie Classic Race which we believe will draw additional participants, including top classic skiers, resulting in the Classic Birkie joining the Birkie in being recognized not only as the premier cross-country ski race in North America, but among the best in the world.
  • The “loops” created by linking the Birkie and Classic Trails at each food station and at several other points provide more options for other events and general recreation for all silent sport users, including hikers, runners and mountain bikers year around.
  • The new trail now provides another alternative for the Birkie in poor snow years. The new trail can serve as a return route to Telemark allowing a full marathon event to take place on the northern portion of the course when we can’t get to the much preferred finish in Hayward.

Major Donors

Contributing $1000 or more to the construction and maintenance of the Birkie Classic Trail:

  • John and Leslie Taylor
  • Johnson Family Foundation
  • Joseph and Cheryl Hoida Family
  • Judy and Gordon Faulkner
  • Becker Law Offices, Madison, WI
  • Phil and Ann Zink
  • Lori Steinbach
  • Bill and Nancy Bauer
  • Alvin and David Nelson
  • Lance Scott
  • Daniel R. Huber Family
  • Gail and Willi VanHaren
  • John Stien
  • The Hayward Lions Club
  • Jane Bidwell
  • Barbara Klippel
  • Seeley Ski Club
  • John Schneider
  • Steven Eyer
  • Kassbohrer All Terrain Vehicles
  • Michael Devanie