Nine Events, One Amazing Day.

The events will traverse the rolling hills and twists & turns of the famous Birkie Trail.  You’ll see beautiful vistas from atop Mt. Telemark and run on challenging hills, all within the beautiful forests of northwest Wisconsin.  If you love to run on a great trail in the midst of nature, this is the event to put on your calendar NOW. Hills for breakfast anyone? See you in September!

The Birkie Trail Run Festival will start & finish at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead, in Cable, WI.

The ABSF is pleased that the Birkie Trail Run Festival’s half marathon has once again been named the USA Track and Field 2021 Half Marathon Trail Championship!


2021 Registration is Now Open!

Choose Your Event! 

  • Ultramarathon (100K)
  • 4-Person Ultramarathon Relay (100K)
  • Marathon (26.2 miles)
  • 3-Person Marathon Relay (26.2 miles)
  • 6-Person Marathon Relay (26.2 miles)
  • Half Marathon (13.1 miles)
  • Nordic Trek (9 mile hike with or without trekking poles)
  • 5 km Run/Walk

Free Race Entry with purchase of $1000 or more at Slumberland. Any Birkie Ski Run Bike Event. Click for Complete Details.

 Jan 1 thru May 16May 17 thru June 19June 18 thru August 5August 6 thru September 9September 10 thru September 24
100 km Ultra Marathon$130$140$150$160$170
Ultra Relay$260$290$320$350$380
Marathon Relay, 3-person$130$145$160$175$190
Marathon Relay, 6-person$260$290$320$350$380
Half Marathon$70$80$90$100$110
Trek - 10 miles$45$55$65$75$85
5 Km Run/Walk$35$40$45$50$55
5 km Ages 12 and Under$10$10$10$10$10

Relay Event Registration

The Team Captain must register and pay for the team.  Each Team Member must register individually under the same Team Name to be issued the team bibs.  We will place your team in the appropriate team category based on age on race day and gender of your participants.

Age Restrictions

Participants in the Half Marathon, Marathon Relay, and Ultramarathon Relay must be 13 years old or older by September 25, 2021.
Marathon and Ultramarathon participants must be 18 years old or older by September 25, 2021.

Registration Deadlines

Register online until 7:00 p.m. on Friday, September 24. There is no in-person or race-day registration.
Team Relay registration closes on Wednesday, September 22nd at 11:59 p.m.

Register through September 1 to guarantee a Birkie Trail Run t-shirt!

Race Change Requests

Participants may transfer their entry from one Birkie Trail Run event to another at any time until 4:00pm CST on Friday, September 17, 2021.  To transfer events, click here, find your registration and click on “Transfer Race” on the bottom of the page. No partial refunds will be given if changing to a shorter event. All requests will be charged a $15 processing fee plus any increase in race fees, if applicable.

To make a RELAY race change, please email

Marathon Relay Categories

Marathon Relay Teams will be placed in one of 12 categories:

3 Person Female Open3 Person Female Masters6 Person Female Open6 Person Female Masters
3 Person Male Open3 Person Male Masters6 Person Male Open6 Person Male Masters
3 Person Mixed Open3 Person Mixed Masters6 Person Mixed Open6 Person Mixed Masters
  • 3-Person Teams must have 2 or 3 team members and may exchange at any of the 5 exchange zones at the marathon aid stations.
  • 3-Person Mixed Teams must have one member of each gender.
  • 6-Person Teams must have 4 to 6 team members and may exchange at any of the 5 exchange zones at the marathon aid stations.
  • 6-Person Mixed Teams must have two members of each gender.  A 6-Person Team with only one person of either gender will not qualify for any team category.
  • A Masters’ team requires ALL members to be 40+ years old as of September 25, 2021.

Ultramarathon Categories

Ultramarathon Relay teams will all be placed in one overall category.

  • Teams may consist of 2 to 4 members.
  • 4-Person Teams of any gender combination.  Team members can exchange at any of the Ultramarathon aid stations.
  • Team members can run in any order and exchange as many times as determined by the team, as long as the exchange occurs at an Ultramarathon aid station.

Protect Your Registration!

Get reimbursed up to 100% on your registration if you can’t compete for a number of reasons.  Next Wave Insurance offers Regsaver so you can insure your non-refundable registration fee in case injury, illness, or another covered peril occurs.* Please see policy for complete list of covered perils at Limitations and exclusions apply. Next Wave Insurance, CA License #: OF00755.

Regsaver - An AIG insurance policy to cover your registration fees - Learn More

Learn More About RegSaver Registration Protection!

Birkie GreenBirkie Trail Run Festival is a cupless event!  Bring your own hydration vessel or during registration purchase a reusable and collapsible cup to use on course and at future races!

Cupless Racing Sponsored by HydraPak.  Register by September 10th to purchase a cup during the registration process.  You’ll get your HydraPak speed cup at bib pick-up.

Course Information

All events start and finish at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead located on McNaught Rd in Cable, WI!

New 2021 Course Map!

Half Marathon/Marathon Course Map

Half Marathon/Marathon Course Map

Time Limits

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end and there are time limits for each event!

The following time limits are in place for each event:

  • Ultramarathon: 17. 5 hours, must cross the finish line by 11 pm
  • Marathon:  7 hours, must cross the finish line by 3 pm
  • Half Marathon: 4 hours
  • Trek: 4 hours
  • 5K: 2 hours

Relays must cross the finish line by 3 pm for the Marathon events and 11 pm for the Ultra.

Marathon & Marathon Relay
Presented by Carlson MD and FITS

Half Marathon/Marathon Course Map

Total Distance: 26.2 miles
Get ready for two laps of the course!


  • Over 2000 feet of total elevation climb on 2 laps of course.


Total Distance: 13.1 miles

  • One lap of the above course
  • Over 1000 feet of elevation gain on the course

We are proud to be hosting the 2021 USATF Half Marathon Trail Championship!

Participants do not have to be USATF members to run in the half marathon, but must have a valid USATF membership to place on the USATF Half Marathon Trail Championship podium.  Click here for more information on WI USATF membership.  For more information on the USATF Half Marathon Trail Championships, please email

Athletes who participate in National Championships and Team USA competitions are subject to drug testing performed by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) in accordance with the USADA Protocol for Olympic and Paralympic Movement Testing.

100 km Ultramarathon and Ultra Relay

Total Distance: 100km, 62 miles
Total ascent is 3432 feet, descent 3461 feet per course lap.

The Ultra course will follow the half marathon course to Timber Trail aid station.  At Timber Trail, it will continue on the Birkie Skate trail towards OO.  The course will turn onto the classic trail before reaching OO and follow the classic trail back through Boedecker and Fire Tower Aid stations to where it meets the half marathon course at the intersection of Timber Trail Rd.  Near the finish area, the Ultra course will take the Lap bypass, go through the start area and head back on the course for lap 2.  Each lap is approximately 31 miles.

2020 Food Options for Ultra Individuals. We will determine if we are able to offer our typical Ultra food at aid stations in 2021 during the summer of 2020.

Item Flavor
Maruchan Instant Lunch Chicken
Individual wrap string cheese
Oranges 5 lb bags
Miniature candy bars Snickers, twix, reese’s, etc
Pop tarts Mix of blueberry, strawberry, cherry
Uncrustables pb and any kind of jam
Small boxes of raisins
Small, single size bags of chips mix of flavors
Coke 7.5 oz (small cans)
Granola bars
Fig bars

Friday, September 24th 6:00 p.m. — Ultramarathon pre-race briefing 

5 km Run / Walk

Total distance 5 km (3.1 miles)

The 5km course will take you on the Birkie Skate trail to smaller ski trails and give you a tour of some of the expanded trail system around the American Birkebeiner Trailhead.  With 350 feet of elevation gain, it’s a nice rolling course to put your legs to the test!

Nordic Trek

Total distance: 9 miles

  • 900 feet of elevation gain on the Trek course.
  • The Trek course will follow most of the Half Marathon course, but head back to the finish earlier to offer a shorter distance.  The Trek course will join with the 5K course after the Stadium aid station before making its way to the finish line.  This event is timed for safety purposes, but no overall or age group awardss are given.

Race Day Schedule & Information

5:30 AMUltra Marathon Start
6:30 AMUltra Marathon Relay Start
6:30 AMBib Pick Up Opens
8:00 AMMarathon Start
8:30 AMMarathon Relay Start
9:00 AMDive for the Dirt Kid's Obstacle Course Open
9:15 AMHalf Marathon Start
9:30 AMTrek Start
9:45 AM5K Start
10:30 AMPost Race Party Begins
11:00 AM5K Overall & Age Group Awards
11:35 AMHalf Marathon Awards - Overall, Age Class and USATF National Championship
11:45 AMKid's Warm Up & 1 km Race
12:45 PM Marathon Awards - Overall, Relay
1:15PM Marathon Age Group Awards
3:00 PMFinal Marathon Finish Cut-Off
6:00 PMUltra Champion Awards
11:00 PMFinal Ultra Finisher Cut-Off


Getting to the Start

All of the races will start and finish at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead.  Arrive at the start from Telemark Rd- take Hwy M east from Cable, take a right (south) on Telemark Rd., drive past the old lodge and follow the signs to parking and/or bib pick-up.  Exit the start/finish area on McNaught Rd.  There is ample parking at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead.

Aid Stations

Birkie GreenThere are three Aid Station locations for the Birkie Trail Run (most are used twice) depending on the race.  There are no aid stations on the 5K course. Aid Stations WILL NOT supply disposable paper cups.  Bring your own hydration vessel.

Ultramarathon Support

Ultramarathon participants may have drop bags transported to aid stations. All drop bags must have the runner’s name and the name of the aid station clearly marked on them. Bags should be brought to the race start Saturday morning.  Please deposit your bag on the appropriate destination tarp for transport to each aid station.  See Ultra directions for more details.  Drop bag service will not be offered for any other race distances.

Food options will most likely be pre-packaged option again in 2021.  Food options available for Ultra runners will likely include: small cans of cola, bananas/oranges, salty snacks, cup of noodles, Uncrustables, Pop Tarts, raisins, miniature candy bars,  and string cheese.  Hot water will be available at all aid stations except the Stadium station.  Specific details will be available in September.

Drop Outs

If you are dropping out of the race, please report to an Aid Station Chief or at the Finish.  All Ultramarathon runners that drop out must report to Command Central.  See Ultramarathon participant guide for more information.


Ultramarathon runners will need a light for at least a portion of the race. Sunrise is at 7:00 am and sunset at 6:52 pm. Unless you plan on finishing long before sunset, you should plan on having access to a light. Runners will not be allowed to leave an aid station after 5:00 pm without a light.


Please stay tuned for guidance on whether spectators will be encouraged to attend the event or cheer from afar. 

Please … No Dogs at Event

To assure the safety of all participants and spectators, no pets or strollers are allowed on the course. Pets are also not allowed anywhere on the event grounds, including the course, start/finish line area, Great Hall, food, and spectator areas.


Every participant in the Birkie Trail Run events will receive a post-race meal, including your first beer or soda for free! The first 900 registered will receive a commemorative t-shirt.

Please stay tuned for award procedures.

100k Ultramarathon Awards


The top male and female runners will receive a certificate for a pair of Salomon shoes! Second and third place male and female runners will receive podium awards.

Marathon Awards


The first male and female across the line in the Marathon will receive a certificate for a pair of Salomon shoes!  Second and third place overall will receive podium awards.

Age Class

The 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place runners, male and female, will receive a special award in each of the following classes:

  • Marathon – 18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, 80+

Half-Marathon Awards

A total of $6000 in prize money!


The first male and female across the line in the Half-Marathon will receive a certificate for a pair of Salomon shoes!  Second and third place overall will receive podium awards.

Cash prizes for the Half Marathon, male and female:

  • 1st place $1000
  • 2nd place $800
  • 3rd place $600
  • 4th place $400
  • 5th place $200

Age Class

The 1st, 2nd and 3rd place runners, male and female, will receive a special award in each of the following classes:

  • Half Marathon – 13-17,18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, 80+

USATF Half Marathon Trail Championship

The first male and female USATF members across the finish line will win the USATF Half Marathon Trail Championships!  Make sure your USATF number is current or become a member here.

USATF members are also eligible for USATF Age Group Awards in the following categories:

  • Open (top 10)
  • 40-44
  • 45-49
  • 50-54
  • 55-59
  • 60-64
  • 65-69
  • 70-74
  • 75-79
  • 80-84
  • 85-89
  • 90-94

5K Awards


The first male and female across the line in the 5k will receive a certificate for a pair of Salomon shoes!  Second and third place overall will receive podium awards.

Age Class

The 1st, 2nd and 3rd place runners, male and female, will receive a special award in each of the following classes:

  • 5 km – 8 and under, 9-10, 11-12, 13-17, 18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69,70-79, 80+

Marathon Relay Awards

Each team member of the overall first place 3- and 6-person relay teams will be awarded  a certificate for a pair of Salomon shoes!

Relays are awarded in the following categories: Open Men; Open Women; Open Mixed Gender; Master (40+)  Men; Master (40+) Women; Master (40+) Mixed Gender

Ultramarathon Relay Awards

Each team member of the overall first place team will be awarded a certificate for a pair of Salomon shoes!

There is only one category for the Ultramarathon relay.

Travel & Lodging

North Woods Getaway

The Birkie Trail Run Events start and finish at the American Birkebeiner Trailhead, located about 17 miles north of Hayward, WI, the “Gateway to the Historic Northwoods” in the town of Cable, WI. Within driving distance from Duluth, MN 1:30, Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN 3:00, Madison, WI 4:50, and Chicago, IL 7:20.

Lodging Options Are Available from the Regional Tourism Offices

No onsite camping will be available in 2020.

Hayward Lakes Visitor & Convention Bureau

Sawyer County, WI, USA
800-724-2992 or 715-634-4801

Hayward Area Chamber of Commerce

800-724-2992 or 715-634-8662

Cable Area Chamber of Commerce


Rice Lake Tourism

800-523-6318 or 715-234-8888

Ashland Chamber of Commerce


Celebrate Your Run

Post-Race Celebration

The post-race celebration may look differently than in a typical year.  We’ll keep you updated with the latest and what you can expect from our friends at the Corner Deli and Earth Rider Brewery. 

Gear Up

Stay well hydrated at the Birkie Trail Run. You will carry your own hydration and fuel with you for this event—water refill will be available. Find the perfect solution for you, from handhelds to packs.  Click here for hydration gear options.

Train to Run

Be ready for those Birkie hills! Running uphill often seems too hard or we try to run too quickly and explode. Improve your uphill technique with these tips.

Uphill Running Tips
Training Plans


Want to get involved, see the event up close and personal, be part of what makes Birkie events great?
We love Birkie Volunteers!

Click Here to Volunteer!

Elite Athletes

The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation is committed to supporting elite athletes at all of our events. Send inquiries to to see what support is available.




Title Sponsor



Carlson MD
Presenting Sponsor
Presenting Sponsor
Marathon Relay
Presenting Sponsor
100K Ultra / Ultra Relay
Northern Lakes CooperativeNorthern Lakes Cooperative
Presenting Sponsor
Post-Race Lunch



Backroads Coffee
Marketplace Foods