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!

Slumberland Furniture

For 2019 Kortelopet skiers will experience a great 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, 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 2019!

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

Tempur-Pedic = 2 Free Entries! Click for Info

Skier Tracking – Share this with Family & Friends!

It’s easy for friends and family to track an American Birkebeiner, Kortelopet or Prince Haakon skier on their smartphone or online!


Download the app (free!) from your app store. Search for the Birkie 2019 event and you’re all set!


Click this link to track your favorite skier on race day!

Users will get details such as time, pace, position on the map, and estimated finish time! Plus, watch the live stream cameras!


2019 Registration Closed on January 3, 2019 at 11:59pm!

If you registered on February 25, 2018, you will not show up in “Am I Registered?”. If you are unsure, please contact the Birkie Office at 715-634-5025, ext. 0.

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

Please 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, please call the Birkie office at 715-634-5025 or email Skiers interested in skiing the Korte on Friday and the Birkie on Saturday can register for both races!

Protect Your Registration!

Get reimbursed up to 100% on your Korte registration if you can’t compete for a number of reasons including:

  • A covered illness or injury
  • Pregnancy
  • You have a traffic accident en route to your event
  • Your car breaks down within 24 hours of the event
  • One of the many other covered reasons

Event Registration Protector also comes with Competition Care: a 24 hour assistance hotline that can give you race-day information, find nearby equipment stores, and much, much more.

Add Registration Protection!

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!

2019 Birkie Gear Bags Are Sold Out!

It’s Back for 2019! It seems that everywhere we looked during Birkie week 2018 we spotted the awesome new Birkie gear bag!  Participants gave the Birkie gear bag a rousing thumbs up!

  • The 2019 Birkie gear bag will have the same great styling, same handy features, same convenient size, and a brand new look!
  • The Birkie gear bag will be used in lieu of the plastic bag you normally receive at bib pick-up.  If you opt not to participate in this opportunity at registration, a plastic bag will still be available during bib pick-up 2019.
  • Locking in your own new Birkie gear bag is easy!  For $39 during the registration process you can claim your own bag for 2019!  The $125 value Birkie gear bag is available only while supplies last and only during the registration process.  You must register for the race and gear bag no later than July 1 to guarantee a Birkie gear bag in 2019!
  • Just like in 2018, the Birkie gear bag will be distributed during bib pick-up 2019 for those who’ve opted to secure a gear bag during Birkie, Korte, and Prince Haakon registration (events which currently receive plastic drop-off bags).
  • The reusable Birkie gear bag is yours to use on your year-round adventures as well as during future Birkie, Korte, and Prince Haakon races!
  • Use of the Birkie gear bag significantly reduced plastic waste during Birkie week 2018.  With your help, we hope to reduce even more waste from plastic bags in 2019!  Thank you for helping the Birkie to go green!
  • Only an official 2018 or 2019 Birkie gear bag or the provided plastic bag will be accepted at bag drop-off on race day.
  • Dimensions:  26.5 x 10.5 x 12.5 with backpack straps.  The Birkie gear bag is a slightly larger version of that used by the US Ski Team and includes a special clear pocket on the top of the bag for your bib number!

Skiløper - New Kortelopet Recognition Program

Like Birkie skiers, Kortelopet skiers are a dedicated bunch!  In honor of a Korte skier’s determination and dedication, the ABSF is pleased to announce Skiløper, a well-deserved recognition program!  Skiløper, Norwegian for “skier” (pronounced “Shē-lōp-păh”), will begin in 2019 and will recognize Kortelopet skiers who reach the milestones of 10, 20, and 30-years.  In addition to the current recognition which includes a Kortelopet 10-year plaque and a pin as you cross the finish line, Skiløper skiers will be receive a unique bib and deservedly a little swagger for earning it!  Here’s how it works:

  • Skiers will be recognized at 10, 20 and 30 years for their Kortelopet accomplishments!
    • Skiløper – Ti (Pronounced “tee” means Ten )
      • Unique bib for 10-19 years
      • Listed in the results of the Birch Scroll as a Skiløper – Ti
    • Skiløper -Tjue (Pronounced “tu-a” means Twenty)
      • Unique bib for 20-29 years
      • Listed in the results of the Birch Scroll as a Skiløper – Tjue
    • Skiløper – Tretti (Pronounced “tre-tee” means thirty)
      • Unique bib for 30+ years
      • Listed in the results of the Birch Scroll as a Skiløper – Tretti

If you’ve skied 10 or more Kortelopet races, you’ll automatically receive a bib for the next year in your overall Korte accomplishments as a Skiløper (Ti, Tjue, or Tretti!).

Congratulations Skiløper – You’ve Earned it!

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 2015, 2016 and 2018 Birkie events for the same event which you are registering- distance and technique (see the Wave Seeding Criteria tables below).  Wave placement will be made based on the top finish which matches the race you are currently registered for.  If you do not have a finish time for that specific event from those years, but do have a finish time from any of the other three seeded Birkie events 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, wave placement criteria will use results from the similar distance race, then from a similar technique.   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.

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

New for 2019! Korte Elite Waves!

The Kortelopet Skate and Classic races will each have an elite wave.  The Elite Wave is a long standing Birkie tradition that will now include the Kortelopet.  The Elite Wave recognizes the athleticism that it takes to be a top competitor and provides the advantage of a less congested start.  The Korte Skate Elite Wave is comprised of the top 100 men and 40 women from the previous year (2018); Korte Classic Elite Wave is top 40 men and 15 women from the previous year (2018).  Participants qualifying for the Korte Elite Wave will automatically be placed in their respective wave upon registering.  Elite Wave qualifiers that ski a different technique in 2019 will not be placed in the elite wave, but may request to be put on the waitlist.  Skiers qualifying for the Elite Wave may register for the race until January 25, 2019.  Open positions in the Elite Wave will be filled from the waitlist after January 25, 2019.  For more information or to be placed on the waitlist, email

Kortelopet Skate Wave Seeding Criteria

Korte Skate2018 Finish Time2018 PBE2016 Finish Time2016 PBE2015 Finish Time2015 PBE
Wave 1Up to 2:21:12Up to 70%Up to 1:45:00Up to 70%Up to 1:59:17Up to 70%
Wave 22:21:13 to 2:54:2571% to 110%1:45:01 to 2:09:4371% to 110%1:59:18 to 2:27:2171% to 110%
Wave 32:54:26 to 3:35:57111% to 160%2:09:44 to 2:40:36111% to 160%2:27:22 to 3:02:26111% to 160%
Wave 4 3:35:58 and Up161% and Up2:40:37 and Up161% and Up3:02:27 and Up161% and Up

Korte Classic Wave Seeding Criteria

Korte Classic2018 Finish Time2018 PBE2016 Finish Time2016 PBE2015 Finish Time2015 PBE
Wave 1Up to 2:57:23Up to 85%Up to 2:09:59Up to 85%Up To 2:25:50Up to 85%
Wave 22:57:24 to 3:30:5686% to 120%2:10:00 to 2:34:3586% to 120%2:25:51 to 2:53:2686% to 120%
Wave 33:30:57 to 4:18:53121% to 170%2:34:36 to 3:09:43121% to 170%2:53:27 to 3:32:51121% to 170%
Wave 44:18:54 and Up171% and Up3:09:44 and Up171% and Up3:32:52 and Up171% and Up

Event Adjustment Factors

Event You are Registering For in 2019Using 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

U20 Wave for Junior Racers

If you are a skier born between January 1, 1999 and February 22, 2006 you will be assigned to start the Kortelopet in the U20 Classic or U20 Skate Waves.  If you are a junior skier and do not want to ski in the U20 wave contact and you will be placed 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 25, 2019. Contact with inquiries or questions.

Wave 70

The mission of the American Birkebeiner Foundation includes supporting healthy and active lifestyles among people of all 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.

Event/Technique Change Request

Participants may request to change from the Korte to the Prince Haakon and/or technique between Skate and Classic at any time until 4:00pm CST on January 25, 2019.  (Participants may no longer transfer from the Korte to the Birkie as the Birkie is full.)  A change fee of $15 plus any difference in entry fee 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 make an event/technique change request.

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.

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 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

You may request to use a race result from the list of qualifier competitions 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 multiply 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 2018 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)

Request an upgrade only if your PBE will place you in a lower wave. Make sure you have completed steps 1-3 before calling.

Click Here to View the 2019 Qualifier Races

Bib and Gear Bag Pickup

Bib Number Email Confirmations will be sent out the week before Birkie Week

Pre-Race Bib Pickup: Thursday, February 21

  • Location:  Birkie Expo, Hayward High School
  • Time:  10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Details:  You will pick up your bib and Birkie Gear Bag (if you ordered one). If you did not order a Birkie Gear Bag, you will get a plastic bag. You will not receive both types of bags.
  • Click Here for “Expo Preview”

Race Day Bib Pick Up: Friday, February 22

  • Location: In the big tent at the Kortelopet Start
  •  9:00 am to 11:00 am
  • There will be NO BIRKIE GEAR BAG PICK-UP at the start. Plastic bags will be given to all those picking up bibs at the start. If you ordered a Birkie Gear Bag and are doing bib pickup at the start, you have two options to get your Birkie Gear Bag: 1. Bring your bib envelope (it must say “Bag Type = Birkie Gear Bag”) to the Expo on Friday after the race and pick it up there. 2. If you ordered a Birkie Gear Bag and are picking your bib up at the start, you can have your Birkie Gear bag mailed to you ($11 cost), up through March 15, 2019.

Click here to request to have your Birkie Gear Bag mailed to you.

Start Wave Schedule

Race Schedule:  Friday, February 22

WaveStart Time
Elite Skate Men/Women10:30
Elite Classic Men/Women10:35
Wave 1 Classic10:40
Wave 1 Skate10:45
U20 Boys Skate10:50
U20 Girls Skate10:55
U20 Boys/Girls Classic11:00
Wave 7011:05
Wave 2 Classic11:10
Wave 2 Skate11:15
Wave 3 Classic11:20
Wave 3 Skate11:25
Wave 4 Classic11:30
Wave 4 Skate11:35

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 23, 2019. Kortelopet skiers must be 13 years of age by February 22, 2019. There are no refunds allowed for any reason including race cancellation. Entry fees are non-transferable between individuals or to future races.

Participants who complete an event in 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.

Click here for policies for using the clothing transport from the start to the finish Clothing Bag Procedures

Click here for the Participant Rules.

Cut-Off Times

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.

TimeLocationKilometer from Start
1:30 pmGravel Pit Aid Station9 KM
2:30 pmMosquito Brook Aid Station15 KM
3:35 pmHatchery Park Aid Station21 KM
5:00 pmFinish Line29 KM

Course Information

Korte Elevation Profile

Korte/Prince Haakon Course MapClick the image above for PDF map.


Kortelopet Skate and Classic Overall Awards

The top three male and female finishers across the line in both skate and classic will be awarded Championship plaques at the Kortelopet Award Ceremony in the Celebration Plaza in Hayward at 12:45 pm on Friday.

Wave Winner Awards

Top male and female Korte skiers in each wave: Skate & Classic Waves 1, 2, 3, 4, U20, Wave 70. How to claim your award: On race day, check Korte “Wave Winners” results online, then go directly to the Clif Lodge on the corner of Main Street by the Birkie Bridge (hours: Friday – 11:00 am to 5:00 pm. Saturday – 9:00 am to 5:00 pm).

U20 Scholarship Awards

The top three U20 Boy and U20 Girl finishers in the Korte Skate and Korte Classic will receive a scholarship that can be applied to US Ski & Snowboard or US Ski & Snowboard regional partner training camps or competition trips that occur AFTER the Kortelopet race (and within 1 year of receiving the award). Eligible camps and trips 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.

The scholarship payment has to be sent directly to the organization (NOT the athlete) that is hosting the camp/competition.  The scholarship winner must communicate with the Birkie (contact the name, email address, physical address, and phone number of the organization.

Scholarship amounts are:

  • 1st Place $500
  • 2nd Place $300
  • 3rd Place $100

Finisher Recognition

Skiers finishing their first Kortelopet will receive a medal at the Finish.

Skiers who have completed more than one Kortelopet will receive a pin indicating 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.


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 among the nine races that comprised the founding events, which have grown to 20 races on five continents.

Worldloppet Ambassadors

There are many Birkie Skiers who have experience traveling to races around the globe. If you are interested in a particular race or just about the WL in general, we can connect you with someone who can share their experience with you and help to plan a trip. Click Here to submit an inquiry.


Tens of thousands of skiers around the world record their finishes of the Worldloppet Competitions in a special Passport. Finishers of the Korte  Skate or Classic can have their passport stamped for Worldmaster Silver credit  or purchase a new passport  following the race on Saturday or on Sunday.

Worldloppet passports may also be purchased on-line by clicking HERE. If you have completed a Birkie or Korte  in the past, you can request that a stamped passport be mailed to you at any time. Cost of new passports are $35.

Worldloppet Breakfast

All are welcome to join Worldloppet Skiers, Delegates from other Worldloppet Competitions ,and honored guests at the Worldloppet Breakfast held 8:00 am, Friday, February 22nd.  More information and registration details coming soon.


For lodging information, see our Lodging page.


The First Lutheran Church will provide childcare for children ages 4-12 on Friday, Feb. 22nd from 8am – 5pm and/or Saturday, Feb. 23rd from 8am – 5pm.  Cost is $50/child/day. Lunch & snack will be provided. A registration form can be found hereCompleted registration forms and questions should be sent to Tiffany Chipman at .

For additional questions, please contact Tiffany at 715-634-2141.


Skiers, whether elite or citizen, count on spectators to cheer them on as they set their sights on the finish line. Just when they think they’re fading, spectators provide an emotional lift that encourages them along their way. Catch Korte Fever!

Watch, cheer and ring cowbells for skiers.

Join the celebration  at the People’s Bank Midwest Celebration Plaza on Main Street between 3rd and 4th Streets beginning at 10:00 am. The first finishers are welcomed with the ringing of the church bells as they come off of Lake Hayward on to Main Street at approximately noon. Good viewing is possible along the length on Main Street.
Parking is available at designated parking lots with shuttle service throughout the day. There is limited street parking with in the downtown area, respect the parking direction signs and utilize the parking lots.

Wax Services

Check back soon to get this year’s wax recommendations from our sponsors — Swix, New Moon, Gear West, Start, and BNS.