8 Events, 1 Day, 1200 Runners Take to the Trails at Birkie Trail Run Festival

Hayward, WI (September 26, 2018) – September 29, 2018 marks the 17th running of the Birkie Trail Run Festival, presented by the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation. The event is held on the legendary hills of the iconic Birkie Trail. For a second year, the Birkie Trail Run Festival will once again host the USA Track and Field (USATF) Half Marathon Trail Championship; the USATF is track and field’s national governing body.

“We are honored to host another USATF National Championship and welcome America’s best runners to the beautiful trails of the north woods,” said Ben Popp, ABSF Executive Director. “It’ll be an awesome day on the Birkie Trail for all of our runners and trekkers.”

From the challenge and intensity of a 100-kilometer ultra-marathon to the fun of a 5-kilometer run/walk, an estimated 1200 runners and trekkers will take to the Birkie Trail for a day of fun, camaraderie, and outdoor adventure in the beautiful forest of northwestern Wisconsin. With eight events on the roster – including a marathon, marathon relay (3 or 6 person teams), half marathon, Nordic Trek, 5K run/walk, youth 5K (12 and under), 1K Fun Run and Dive for the Dirt obstacle course (free for ages 9 and under), along with the 100K Ultra Marathon – there is a north woods trail experience available for every ability level. Full race course information is available at www.Birkie.com.

The Birkie Trail Run Festival events, presented by Salomon, start and finish at Birkie Ridge Trailhead, 12.5 miles north of Hayward, Wisconsin, and 5 miles south of Cable, Wisconsin, near Seeley, Wisconsin. The eight Birkie Trail Run Festival events place runners and trekkers on some of the most scenic stretches of the famous Birkie Trail and single-track sections of the CAMBA (Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association) trail system.

The Birkie Trail Run Festival will welcome runners with a Vendor Fair and bib pick-up on September 28. On Saturday, September 29, it’s off to the races with a full roster of events, a savory lunch, Birkie Brew-Ski amber ale and other cold beverages on tap, on-site camping at Birkie Ridge, autumn leaves (courtesy of Mother Nature), and Birkie Fever aplenty.

Race Day Schedule, September 29

  • 5:30 AM Ultra Marathon 100K
  • 6:30 AM Bib Pick-Up Opens
  • 8:00 AM Marathon – 26.2
  • 8:30 AM Marathon Relay – 26.2
  • 9:00 AM Dive for the Dirt opens
  • 9:15 AM Birkie Half Marathon 13.1
    • USATF Half Marathon 13.1
  • 9:30 AM Nordic Trek – 10 Mile
  • 9:45 AM 5K
  • 10:30 AM Birkie Ridge Bash Begins
  • 11:00 AM Award Ceremonies Begin
  • 11:45 AM 1K Fun Run for Kids
  • 6:00PM Ultra Marathon Awards &
    • Celebration at Rivers Eatery
  • 11:00PM Last Ultra Finishers

Going Cup Free

Once again, the ABSF is encouraging its participants to help make the Birkie Trail Run Festival a clean race by using a reusable SpeedCup from HydraPak or another personal hydration vessel. The first 1000 participants at bib pick-up will receive a SpeedCup, compliments of HydraPak, for use during their race and beyond.

Dive for the Dirt

An obstacle course for kids, Dive for the Dirt will include a slack line, tunnel crawl, hay bale leap, balance beam, agility ladders, hurdles, and a cargo net belly crawl. Birkie and Hayward Memorial Hospital & Water’s Edge volunteers will supervise and help kids as needed. An adult must sign a waiver for each child participating in youth events. At 11:45 am, kids will gather for pre-run warm-ups and a 1K fun run through the woods. The run is untimed, and kids will enjoy cold Kemps chocolate milk after their fun run. Advance registration is recommended for this free obstacle and fun run.

ATRA – Elite Athlete Meet & Greet and Q&A

The public is invited to join the ABSF in the tent at the Vendor Fair at 5:30 pm on Friday, September 28th for a presentation from American Trail Running Association (ATRA) Executive Director, Nancy Hobbs, and a Q&A with elite athletes. ATRA has been the leading advocate for mountain, ultra & trail running for two decades. Elite runners, in contention for the USATF Half Marathon Trail Championships, will be on hand to answer your questions and share their training tips.

Vendor Fair

On Friday, September 28, the public is invited to Birkie Ridge for the Birkie Vendor Fair- a source for great gear, clothing, and more. The Birkie Vendor Fair will be open during bib pickup on Friday from 1:00 pm to 7:00 pm and again on race day until 3:00 pm.

  • Salomon
  • FITS Socks
  • Citizens Climate Lobby
  • Gear West
  • Hayward Coffee Company
  • Leki Poles
  • Mainstream Boutique
  • New Moon Ski & Bike Shop
  • Riverbrook Bike & Ski
  • Telemark Vacation Condominiums
  • Katie Wilkins Massage
  • Birkie Store
  • ABSF “Support Your Birkie Fever


Event registration opened on January 1, 2018 and interested runners and trekkers are invited to register for open events at www.Birkie.com through 7:00 pm on Friday, September 28. Kids may register for the fun run until 11:30 am on Saturday, September 29.


The Birkie Trail Run Festival is sponsored by: Salomon – Title Sponsor Birkie Trail Run Festival; CARLSON MD – Presenting Sponsor Marathon; FITS – Presenting Sponsor Marathon Relay; HydraPak – Presenting Sponsor Half-Marathon; The Rivers Eatery – Presenting Sponsor 100K Ultra-Marathon; Corner Deli – Post-Race Food & Beverage; Clif Bar – Official Bar; Kemps – Finish Line Recovery; GU – Official Energy; nuun – Official On Course Hydration; Hayward Area Memorial Hospital & Waters Edge – Presenting Sponsor: Kids 1K and Dive for the Dirt.

Posted September 26, 2018 at 2:23 pm