In-Person Race is Closed – Virtual Race Registration Closes 1/19/21!

Whether you’ve chosen to ski in-person or have opted for the virtual experience, Birkie 2021 will be an experience to remember!  #Birkie2021

  • Wednesday, Feb. 24: SKATE 43K
  • Thursday, Feb. 25: SKATE 43K
  • Friday, Feb. 26: CLASSIC 43K
  • Saturday, Feb. 27: SKATE 43K
  • Sunday, Feb. 28: CLASSIC 43K

The 2021 Slumberland American Birkebeiner®:

  • Hosted over 5 days from Wednesday, February 24 through Sunday, February 28
  • 3-days of Freestyle Technique racing: Wednesday, Feb. 24, Thursday, Feb. 25, and Saturday, Feb. 27
  • 2-days of Classic Technique racing:  Friday, February 26 and Sunday, February 28
  • Smaller waves, socially distanced spacing, and spread out start times
  • A looped course from the American Birkebeiner Trailhead in Cable, WI to OO Trailhead and back
  • Park conveniently close to the adjoining start & finish areas
  • Safety precautions and protocols in place from start to finish
  • Check the Birkie Event Update page and FAQ’s for the latest event news


We remain committed to providing inspiring opportunities to promote a healthy active lifestyle and wellness events for all.  We promise you that we will take every safety precaution and measure to ensure the safety of our participants, volunteers, spectators, staff, and local communities.  Whether in-person or virtually, the Birkie week races will happen.

  • For skiers with travel barriers, who have underlying health conditions, who have had COVID-19 in the 90-days preceding the race, or who are simply uncomfortable traveling to NW Wisconsin for their in-person race, we encourage you to select the virtual race option.  Simply select “virtual” during registration.  You’ll get your race bib, hat, ski-stickers, pin, and if you complete your race (on skis or rollerskis from wherever you are), you’ll get credit for your race.  Read the FAQ’s for the latest virtual race details.
  • See the Event Update page for the latest event news.

2021 Slumberland American Birkebeiner
Wednesday-Sunday, February 24-28, 2021
In-Person Race is Closed – Virtual Event Registration Closes 1/19/21

Tier Entry Fee Tier Status & Registration

Tier 1


Tier 1 First 3000 American Birkebeiner, Kortelopet & Prince Haakon Skiers – Closed 5/5/20

Tier 2


Tier 2 - American Birkebeiner, Kortelopet, Prince Haakon Skiers - Closed 7/17/20

Tier 3


Tier 3 - American Birkebeiner, Kortelopet, Prince Haakon Skiers - Closed 11/5/20

Tier 4


Tier 4 - American Birkebeiner, Kortelopet, Prince Haakon Skiers

All participants must be 18 years of age or older on race day to register for the American Birkebeiner.

It is important to always register under the same name (exact spelling) every year in order to keep track of your previous race finishes.

If you are unsure of the name you have previously registered under or if you changed your name, please call the Birkie office at 715-634-5025, Ext. 0, or email

Virtual Event Option

For skiers who aren’t able to travel to Hayward/Cable, or skiers who don’t feel comfortable traveling in February of 2021, we are offering a virtual event for the American Birkebeiner, Kortelopet, and Prince Haakon.  Register for your event now and choose to participate virtually.  You’ll receive your bib and participant hat in the mail so you can wear your bib on race day.  Complete your event on skis or roller-skis on the event day and within the event time limit, track your race using a GPS based app or have a reliable eyewitness verify your results.  Submit your results and you will receive credit for the race and your finish pin.  Results from virtual participation will not be used for future wave placement.

Details on the virtual race in the FAQ’s on the Birkie Event Update page.

To switch to the virtual Birkie, Korte or Prince Haakon option, click here.

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 the 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!

Wave Placement

The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation utilizes a seeded start structure for four of its events:  Birkebeiner Skate, Birkebeiner Classic, Kortelopet Skate, and Kortelopet Classic.  Participants are seeded into start waves based on their race history.  The first priority for wave placement is your best result from 2018 – 2020 Birkie events for the same event for which you are registering- distance and technique (see the Wave Seeding Criteria tables below).

If you do not have a finish time for that specific event (same distance & technique) from 2018 -2020, but do have a finish time from any of the other distances/techniques, 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 Birkie events in 2018-2020, wave placement criteria will use results from the similar distance race, then from a similar technique.  Race times from the 2021 Birkie race will not be used for calculating 2022 wave placement.

Participants who do not have a Birkie event finish time from those years will be placed in the last wave.  The goal of wave placement is to place participants of similar abilities together to minimize passing and encourage a smooth flowing race.

There are also three special waves for those who qualify; Spirit of 35, Wave 70, and Elite Wave. Details for each are found below.

Birkebeiner Skate Wave Seeding Criteria

Birkie Skate 2020 Finish Time2020 PBE2019 Finish Time2019 PBE2018 Finish Time2018 PBE
Wave 1Up to 2:41:17Up to 35.5%Up to 3:11:35Up to 44.5%Up to 2:57:00Up to 44.5%
Wave 22:41:18 to 2:54:2335.5% to 46.5%3:11:36 to 3:30:0944.5% to 58.5%2:57:01 to 3:14:0944.5% to 58.5%
Wave 32:54:24 to 3:07:2846.5% to 57.5%3:30:10 to 3:47:2358.5% to 71.5%3:14:10 to 3:30:0558.5% to 71.5%
Wave 43:07:29 to 3:25:1957.5% to 72.5%3:47:24 to 4:04:3771.5% to 84.5%3:30:06 to 3:46:0071.5% to 84.5%
Wave 53:25:20 to 3:44:2272.5% to 88.5%4:04:38 to 4:28:2984.5% to 102.5%3:46:01 to 4:08:0384.5% to 102.5%
Wave 63:44:23 to 4:22:2788.5% to 120.5%4:28:30 to 5:04:16102.5% to 129.5%4:08:04 to 4:41:07102.5% to 129.5%
Wave 74:22:28 and Up120.5% and Up5:04:17 and Up129.5% and Up4:41:08 and Up129.5% and Up
Wave 8

Birkebeiner Classic Wave Seeding Criteria

Birkie Classic2020 Finish Time2020 PBE2019 Finish Time2019 PBE2018 Finish Time2018 PBE
Wave 1Up to 3:46:46Up to 54.5%Up to 4:17:27

Up to 39.5%Up to 4:10:34
Up to 49.5%
Wave 23:46:47 to 4:21:5954.5% to 78.5%
4:17:28 to 4:54:2139.5% to 59.5%4:10:35 to 4:47:26
49.5% to 71.5%
Wave 34:22:00 to 5:01:3778.5% to 105.5%
4:54:22 to 5:27:34 59.5% to 77.5%4:47:27 to 5:25:5971.5% to 94.5%
Wave 45:01:38 to 5:50:03105.5% to 138.5%
5:27:35 to 6:11:5277.5% to 101.5%5:26:00 to 6:14:3594.5% to 123.5%
Wave 55:50:04 and Up138.5% and Up6:11:53 and Up101.5% and Up6:14:36 and Up123.5% and Up
Wave 6


Event Adjustment Factors

Event You are Registering For in 2021Using Previous Birkie Skate ResultUsing Previous Birkie Classic ResultUsing Previous Korte Skate ResultUsing Previous Korte Classic ResultUsing Previous Prince Haakon Result
Birkie Skate0+ 8 %+ 15 %+ 15 %Wave 7
Birkie Classic- 8 %0+ 8%+ 8 %Wave 5
Korte Skate- 15 %- 7 %00Wave 4
Korte Classic- 15 %- 7 %00Wave 3

Event/Technique Change Request

Participants may request to change from the Birkie to the Korte or Prince Haakon, and/or change technique between Skate and Classic at any time until 4:00pm CST on January 19, 2021. Wave placement is subject to availability at time of request. If the wave that you qualify for is full, you will be assigned to the next wave with space available. A change fee of $25 will be applied. You will receive an updated e-mail confirmation reflecting the change once the change has been made. If you do NOT receive an updated e-mail confirmation within 10 business days, contact

Click here to request an Event/Technique change.

Wave Upgrade Request

Participants may utilize their 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.

Click here to make a wave upgrade request by 4:00pm CST on January 19, 2021. All requests will be charged a $15 service fee, whether a wave upgrade is granted or not. Wave upgrades are subject to availability. If the wave that you qualify for is full, you will be upgraded and assigned to the next wave with space available. You will receive an updated wave placement email confirmation if an upgrade has been made. If you do NOT receive an updated e-mail confirmation within 10 business days, contact  In an effort to create an environment with reduced on-trail passing, consistent race flow, reduced congestion in aid stations, and the safest possible environment for all skiers, we are unable to downgrade a skier to a wave that is slower than the wave they qualify for (and outside of the wave options provided in the Race Day Selection emails).

Follow these steps to see if you are eligible for an upgrade:

  1. Determine your percent back in the qualifier race. Take the Difference in time between You and the Winner. Divide that by the Winner’s time. (Example: your time is 2:36, winning time is 2:00; Difference =36 minutes/2 hours = 0.3 x 100 = 30% back)
  2. Determine your Percent Back Equivalency (PBE). Add the qualifier race’s Adjustment Factor, which is found on the Qualifier List. PBE = Your % Back + Adjustment Factor (Example your 30% back + 57% Adjustment Factor = 87% Back Equivalency.)
  3. Determine where your Percent Back Equivalency (PBE) would place you. Look up your PBE in the 2020 column of the Wave Seeding Table of the race for which you are registered. (Example: A PBE of 87% will place you in Wave 5 for Birkie Skate or Wave 2 for Birkie Classic or Wave 3 Korte Skate or Wave 1 Korte Classic)

Request an upgrade only if your PBE will place you in a lower wave.  Make sure you have completed steps 1-3 before submitting your request as there are no refunds.

Celebrated and Elite Athletes

Spirit of 35

This wave celebrates the spirit of the 35 intrepid skiers who finished the first Birkie in 1973. It is comprised of a small group of skiers who have completed the most Birkies and therefore have a special place in the race’s history. The current group of Spirit skiers have at least 41 Birkies completed, including Birkie Founder, Ernie St. Germain, who has finished all 46 Birkies!

Wave 70

Cross country skiing is a lifestyle sport that allows people to stay active and healthy into their later years. Each year the Birkie provides an opportunity to celebrate this for more than two hundred skiers over the age of seventy! We recognize these skiers with a special bib and special wave.

35 Endowment Forerunners

These 35 major donors collectively gave nearly $1,000,000 to launch the Foundation for the Endowment of the American Birkebeiner, which provides a permanent source of funds for the American Birkebeiner organization. We recognize them permanently with their own specially numbered 35 white bibs.

Elite Wave

The Elite Wave is a long standing tradition at the American Birkebeiner. This wave accommodates competitors who have outstanding credentials from the previous year’s American Birkebeiner.  The top 200 male and 60 female finishers from the 2020 Birkie Skate race will automatically be assigned a starting position in the Elite Wave for the 2021 Birkie Skate race ONLY.  The top 100 male and 40 female finishers from the 2020 Birkie Classic race will automatically be assigned a starting position in the Elite Wave for the 2021 Birkie Classic race ONLY.  Athletes qualifying for the elite wave, but racing a different distance or technique in 2021 must request to be placed on the Elite Wave waitlist of that race at

In 2021, Birkie Champions will be crowned on Saturday for skate and Sunday for classic.  Elite skiers must race on those days to be eligible for awards.

All elite wave qualifiers for 2021 will be automatically qualified in 2022.  Anyone skiing in the 2021 elite wave due to an elite upgrade request will have to make the request again in 2022.

Elite Wave registrations & Elite Waitlist requests close on January 26, 2021 at 4:00 pm CST.

Positions in the Elite Waves are only guaranteed for returning skiers who meet the above finish place criteria. No exceptions. If you have an Elite Wave finish two or more years prior, top Kortelopet finish, or other outstanding cross country ski race results, you may request to be added to the Elite Wave Waitlist by sending an email to Open positions in the Elite Wave will be filled from the Waitlist after January 26, 2021.

Seeded FIS Group

Competitors from all FIS member nations that meet the eligibility requirements will be included in the Seeded Group in the Birkie Skate Race. This group will start as part of the Men’s and Women’s Elite Birkie Skate Waves. However, these competitors will be assigned designated starting positions at the front of the wave and the rest of the elite wave must stay behind the seeded group until the gun goes off.

There is no Seeded Group in the Birkie Classic Race.

Eligibility for the Seeded Group requires that the competitors be active FIS members with at least one FIS race result in the 365 days prior to February 12, 2021, with:

  • fewer than 200 points for women and 150 points for men in competitions with a distance of 30 km or greater
  • fewer than 150 points for women and 125 points for men in competitions with distance less than 30 km

Registrations & Requests for Seeded Group entry must be sent to prior to February 12, 2021.

Team Captains Meeting

There will be a mandatory meeting for Seeded Group competitors at 5:00 pm on Friday, February 26, 2021.  A link to a virtual meeting will be available as we get closer to race day.
Athletes without team affiliation are encouraged to attend the meeting and will have the opportunity to ask questions.

Bib Pickup and Event Week Schedule

Bibs and Birkie Gear Bags Delivered to You

In 2021, prior to Birkie Week, you can have your bib packet ($6) and/or Birkie Gear Bag ($11) mailed to you.  Bib packets and gear bags will be mailed at the beginning of February. Bib packet mailing requests will be accepted through Friday, January 22 at 4 pm CST in order to be processed and mailed before the race.  Gear Bag mailing requests will be excepted until March 31, 2021. Click here to have your bib packet and/or Birkie Gear Bag mailed to you.

Bib packets and Birkie Gear Bags will be mailed to US addresses only.

Birkie Week Bib Pickup

Bib pickup for in-person participants will be at Birkie Ridge by driveup only.  Specific details like dates and times are still to be determined.

Race Day Maps

Arrival & Departure Map
Start/Finish Layout Map

2021 Birkie Skate Wave Schedule- Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday

WaveStart Time
American Birkebeiner Elite Men8:00 AM
American Birkebeiner Elite Women 8:05
American Birkebeiner Wave 18:15
American Birkebeiner Wave 28:30
American Birkebeiner Wave 38:45
Kortelopet Elite Men and Women9:00
Kortelopet U20 Girls and Boys9:05
Kortelopet Wave 19:15
American Birkebeiner Wave 49:30
American Birkebeiner Wave 59:45
Kortelopet Wave 210:00
Spirit of 3510:15
American Birkebeiner and Kortelopet Wave 7010:20
American Birkebeiner Wave 610:30
Kortelopet Wave 310:45
American Birkebeiner Wave 711:00
Kortelopet Wave 411:15
American Birkebeiner Wave 811:30
Kortelopet Wave 511:45
Prince Haakon U19 Boys12:00 PM
Prince Haakon U19 Girls12:05 PM
Prince Haakon 12:15 PM

2021 Birkie Classic Wave Schedule- Friday, Sunday

WaveStart Time
American Birkebeiner Elite Men8:00 AM
American Birkebeiner Elite Women 8:05
American Birkebeiner Wave 18:15
American Birkebeiner Wave 28:30
American Birkebeiner Wave 38:45
Kortelopet Elite Men and Women9:00
Kortelopet U20 Girls and Boys9:05
Kortelopet Wave 19:15
American Birkebeiner Wave 49:30
American Birkebeiner Wave 59:45
Kortelopet Wave 210:00
Spirit of 3510:15
American Birkebeiner and Kortelopet Wave 7010:20
American Birkebeiner Wave 610:30
Kortelopet Wave 310:45
Kortelopet Wave 411:00
Prince Haakon U19 Boys11:15
Prince Haakon U19 Girls11:20
Prince Haakon 11:30

Birkie Expo

Exciting changes are happening to the Birkie Expo for 2021.  Check back here for more information soon!

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 27, 2021. Kortelopet and Prince Haakon skiers must be 13 years of age by February 26, 2021. There are no refunds allowed for any reason including race cancellation. Entry fees are non-transferable between individuals or to future races.

Skiers must ski the distance they have registered for- no participant in the American Birkebeiner can ski the Kortelopet or Prince Haakon without officially changing their race entry (see above for how to request an Event change).  Participants who complete a technique for which they are not registered (for example – 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.

There will be no drop bag service offered during 2021 races.  Skiers should use their vehicle for storage of all personal belongings.

Participant Rules.

Trash Penalty

A trash penalty is now in place for all Birkie events. Any participant, coach, or support crew caught throwing waste on the trail or into the woods between aid stations could be assessed a 15 minute penalty. There will be “Last Chance” garbage disposal areas as you leave each aid stations at all 2021 races. Violators should be reported by bib number via email at or to a volunteer at the next aid station.  Read more in the Participant rules above.

Cut-Off Times

Participants of the 2021 Events must complete their race by 6 pm. Cut-off times for races must be strictly followed for the safety of participants and volunteers.  Participants not following guidance from Medical Staff and Race Chiefs will risk penalty and possible ineligibility for future Birkie Events.

Birkie 2021 Course Map

Click the image above for PDF map.

2021 Course Elevation in meters
2021 Course Elevation in meters

Virtual Trail & Course Tour

A complete list of maps and trail conditions can be found on the Trails page.

Birkie Skate Course Elevation Profile

Birkie Classic Course Elevation Profile

Birkie Course Trailmap ThumbnailClick the image above for PDF map.

Interactive Course Maps

Experience the race again or for the first time! Explore every leg of the race and feel the rush as you virtually ski the American Birkebeiner race! Immerse yourself in the 360 videos of the race start, cross the International Bridge, and witness the amazing finish on Hayward’s Main Street! Try skate or classic, this interactive map experience has it all!

Register for the Slumberland American Birkebeiner and make it real! Because…once the race is closed…it’s closed. Don’t miss out!

View Interactive Course Map »

Or, Tour the Interactive Birkie Trail Map »

Trail Genius Screenshot


Start Line and Finish Line
American Birkebeiner Trailhead, Cable

Sorry, no spectators are allowed in the start or finish areas in 2021.

Worldloppet & Visma Ski Classics

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 one of the nine races that comprise the founding events.  The Worldloppet has grown to over 20 races on five continents. Learn more about Worldloppet Ambassadors, Passports, and the annual Birkie Week Worldloppet breakfast!

Visma Ski Classics

New in 2020! The Slumberland American Birkebeiner is the first American event to enter the world of Visma Ski Classics as a Challenger Series event. Based in Sweden, the Visma Ski Classics is an international, long-distance, skiing circuit. The Visma Ski Classics Challenger series was launched in 2019 as a common platform to connect and promote long distance skiing events worldwide. Learn more!

Lodging & Services


For lodging information, see our Lodging page.

Camp Birkie Childcare

Camp Birkie is postponed until Birkie Week 2022.

Wax Services

Wax Services

Get your skis waxed by the best! Check out the services below from NEW MOON and GEAR WEST!

Future Event Dates

Future Birkie Week Dates:

2022: February 24 – 26

2023: February 23 – 25