Cross Country Ski Events Schedule as Impacted by COVID or Other Circumstances

Reports from Race Directors and Update Links

Being Updated Now for January, February, & March 2021 Race Events

Dear Readers: If you have any additional information on races and sites, please reach out to me via:

bruce.steinberg@mmclocal.com 630 337 1144  

Because there is no paywall, please feel free to take a long walk around this site and so many stories reflecting things happening from day to day. Also, contributor Kierstin Kloeckner has put together a similar list for Winter 2020/2021 Fat Bike races that will appear in the December 2020 print edition and on this website menu list as well (https://silentsportsmagazine.com/reported-fat-bike-race-covid-updates/), along with writer Delaney FitzPatrick’s December 2020 print edition information on how to make your virtual cross country ski race the best it can be. I truly hope this is helpful to your cross country skiing race experiences despite COVID!

Best, Bruce, Managing Editor, Silent Sports Magazine.

December 2020 / January 2021 or ongoing 

 Lakes of the North Freestyle, Mancelona, MI/Michigan Cup Series –DECEMBER 12th – CANCELLED. http://www.nordicskiracer.com/event-details.asp?id=3238

 Forbush Time Trial, Fredric, MIDate: SUNDAY, DECEMBER 13th   CANCELLED!  http://www.nordicskiracer.com/event-details.asp?id=3239

At the MECCA Trails (Mercer, WI), ski virtual races from December 18, 2020, to February 21, 2021, including the Turtle River Pursuit, Flowage 15K Freestyle, Clair d’ Loon 5K, and Mercer Springs Snowshoe Tour. All information available at: https://www.meccatrails.com/

The Snekkevik: Held at the fabulous Nine Mile Forest (last year on January 11th) with multiple event choices. From Gary Zimbric, President of the Wausau Nordic Ski ClubWe think we’ll be holding a modified event, like many others, but are still studying the options. Updates at http://wausaunordic.org/snekkevik.

January 4-17 — SISU Virtual Ski Fest (Link ⇒) www.sisuskifest.com/ One of winter’s premier events held in Ironwood.

January 23  —  (Link ⇒)  North Lakeland Discovery Center Interpretive Ski –Ski the MECCA Trails (Mercer, WI) with a guide from the Discovery Center.  Sponsored by the MECCA Experience.

Lapham Race Series: From Kristin Maki, race director — The Lapham Peak Wednesday Night Adult Ski League and Junior Nordic Ski League will be held in 2021 starting on January 6th and recurring for seven total Wednesdays. Our ski leagues take place on manmade and/or natural snow on State Kettle Moraine Forest property; therefore, we must follow WI State DNR rules for meetings during the Covid-19 pandemic. Group activities are limited in number and registration will be online this year. Updates for registration and times for K-6, Middle School or adult groups will be updated at www.laphampeakfriends.org.

Coleraine JNQ:  Held in Minnesota last year on January 18-19. From Jon Arnston, MINSA: We are determining those things [COVID’s impact] now. CXC has devised an extensive COVID plan, but it is still being fine-tuned. The future is still somewhat murky, but becoming clearer. Update from Jon Arnston on 10/26/20: We have some more clarity at Mt. Itasca now, although of course everything is fluid. We plan to host a CXC JNQEvent on December 19-20 which is titled the CXC Cup Holiday Carnival; there will be specific COVID mitigation procedures in place. Information will be available at CXC or at the event website. CXC: https://cxcskiing.org/pages/events/cxc-junior-cup.htmlEvent website: https://mtitascanordic.wixsite.com/cxc-cupThe US Biathlon Junior/Youth National Trials have also been moved to Mt. Itasca from Anchorage due to COVID and travel concerns. The dates for those events are January 28-31. COVID mitigation procedures will be in place, although we are not yet sure what those will look like. The best places for updates are at the USBA website or the Minnesota Biathlon Website. Event contact person is Vlad Cervenka, cervenkv@gmail.comUSBA: https://www.teamusa.org/us-biathlon/events;  USBA announcement: https://www.teamusa.org/US-Biathlon/News/2020/October/07/Changes-Announced-to-US-Junior-Youth-Trials?fbclid=IwAR36FPBksVzF9SQSJ9Y4fvTZMgbE9tfsTLsvY8jObVR4NFEtWMMVtPKa5fE

Minnesota Biathlon:  https://minnesotabiathlon.com.

Bemidji Cross Country Ski Club Events: Club Secretary Patrick Donnay provided the following: Of our events listed below, I have put what we know at this point. The Snowjourn [tentatively set for January 16] is planned to go ahead, but not sure of details – e.g. untimed, rolling start, etc.  The club website or Facebook page is the best place to look for new information.  [https://www.facebook.com/skibemidji] The Sunday Ski School (Jan. 10, 17, 24, and 31) and the Barneloppet have been cancelled. The Skiper BowlFebruary 7 (Super Bowl Sunday) tentatively as scheduled. Candlelight Ski at Bemidji State Park – TBD (no park activities currently scheduled). MN Finlandia – Saturday, February 15 (tentative reformat planned, contact Minn Fin). Community Ski Day at Movil Maze – TBD. Tour De Bemidji – Saturday, March 6 or 7 TBD. 

 Noquemanon: Marquette, Michigan, January 22-24. From Assistant Race Director

Paul Johnson —

We are still working to determine details but at this time we do plan on an actual

event that will be modified. We are planning around several possible scenarios and

what we are actually able to do will be dependent on the status of executive orders

from the Governor of the State of Michigan. The public can stay up to date with our

event in several ways: View or sign up for newsletters on the race website: 

http://www.noquemanon.com[and] follow the race Facebook page. NOVEMBER 22, 2020

UPDATE – use this link to stay on top of all things Noque till race day: 

https://runsignup.com/Race/MI/Marquette/NoquemanonSkiMarathon2019

Michigan Tech Citizen Night Race Series – through MarchCANCELLED: https://www.michigantechrecreation.com/trails/Citizen-s_Night_Series However, Joel Isaacson Michigan Tech Athletics Senior Associate Athletic Director reports that the Mich. Tech CXC Cup Holiday Championship on January 2 & 3, 2021 is a go with further and ongoing updates via: https://www.michigantechrecreation.com/trails/Ski_Races/index

Mora Ski Club “Adult Learn to Ski” class on Sundays in January- the 3rd, 10th, 17th and 24th from 1:00-3:00, all abilities, classic and skate techniques.  Registration is through Mora Community Education. Facebook Link: https://www.facebook.com/Mora-Community-Education-109945747240354/ Also from  Phoebe Miron Kroll:  We are also planning on having our Fast Track Kids Ski program at the same dates and times as the adult classes this year.  We usually meet after school in the elementary school but that is not feasible this year.  We are asking everyone (adults and kids) to come ready to ski.  We are still not sure if the Nordic Center building will be open, plus it would be too many inside at one time in any case!  We are currently planning on holding some form of our usual Lanternloppet on January 30th, starting at sunset on the Nordic Center Trails, but again, we are still working on how to make it happen as safely as possible. Website: http://moraskiclub.org; Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Mora-Community-Education-109945747240354/; Email Phoebe if you have questions: phoebelu@moraskiclub.org

Badger State Games: Nine Mile, Wisconsin – January 30, 2021 – From Nick Ockwig, BSG Director

For Nordic, we have made the decision to not have a large tent with concessions. No Concessions

and anyplace for a gathering spot. Basically, come to event, get dressed in your car, ski

your event, and leave. Go to http://www.badgerstategames.orgfor continued updates.

Duluth XC Ski Club: From Eric Chandler, DXC Communications. Our Nordic Spirit Race

is still scheduled for January 30. The format is TBD. The best way for people to stay up to date

with the race and other events is via our website: http://Duluthxc.com.

     Hyland Rennet: January 9, Bloomington, MN. From new Race Director Brian Mastel— The event will be taking place. The Rennet web pages were just updated and should have most of the information you need at http://threeriversparks.org/skirennet. We may have to make a few modifications, but fully intend to put on the races in-person.  

HinderBinder Ski Race: January 16, 2021. From Norm Hoyt, Director of Educational Ministries. There will be a race no matter what. There WILL be a safe way to do it. More information at http://www.forestsprings.com.

February Updates/Links

First Weekend (Feb. 5/6/7):

Minnesota (Brainard) – Lumberjack Jaunt http://www.brainerdnordicskiclub.com/lumberjack-jaunt.html

Minnesota Moraloppet Ski for a Cause (Breast Cancer Fundraiser)2/6/2021, listed as a go: https://vasaloppet.us/moraloppet-ski-for-the-cause/

Minnesota: City of Lakes Loppet Winter Festival, Minneapolis, Feb. 5 – 7, 2021https://www.loppet.org/events/festival/

Minnesota, Minneapolis: Classic Ski Loppet, February 6, 2021 Saturday, 9:00 AM; Bde Maka Ska North Beach, 2707  West Lake Street  https://www.loppet.org/events/classicskiloppet/

Minnsota – The Skiper BowlFebruary 7 (Super Bowl Sunday) tentatively as scheduled.

Wisconsin (Minocqua)Wolf TracksCANCELLED/REPLACED: Per an email from Dan Clausen: Winter Park will not be hosting the Wolf Tracks race this season. We plan to groom with a bigger budget for great skiing.  The ski shop has been active this past month.  Thinking of planning out a course for some races that are going to go virtual.  Stay Safe!  http://www.minocquawinterpark.org/wolftracks/

Wisconsin (Washburn) – Mt. Ashwabay Summit Ski Race Feb. 6, 2021 – https://ashwabaysummitskirace.com/race-info/

Wisconsin (Cable) – North End Classic – Feb. 7, 2021 –https://northendskiclub.org/north-end-classic-race/

Michigan Tech Citizen Night Race Series – through MarchCANCELLED: https://www.michigantechrecreation.com/trails/Citizen-s_Night_Series However, Joel Isaacson Michigan Tech Athletics Senior Associate Athletic Director reports that the NCAA Regional Championships are a go on February 27/28. 2021 with further and ongoing updates via: https://www.michigantechrecreation.com/trails/Ski_Races/index

February 13-20, 2021

Wisconsin (Seeley/Hayward) Pre-Birkie: A go as of 12/22/20: No spaghetti feed this year. 26 and 42K with both start at Birkie Ridge, just north of Seeley, where the course heads south down the skate trail to OO (26K) or Gravel Pit (42K), where the race returns north up the classic trail to Fire Tower, then loop back to Birkie Ridge. Aid stations are planned throughout as health and safety officials permit. Registering online gives you a chance to win a free registration for the 2022 pre-Birkie. New Website URL: http://prebirkie.com 

Wisconsin, Boulder Junction – The Forest Frenzy – held in 2020 on February 15th, has been CANCELLED for reasons unrelated to COVID.

Wisconsin, Coloma: Feb 13, 2021: Feb. 13th: Coloma, WI Glide & Ride at Coloma Community Park. Registration starts at 9am, Racing starts at 10 am, 14K Skate and Classic, Kid’s Race 1k, 10 and under, 7K Fat Bike Race to follow. Distance for the bike race can be increased by adding a second lap for 14K.  The group can help decide the distance.  Men’s and Women’s Divisions, Medals 1st,2nd, and 3rd. This is a cross country ski race (10 am) and a fat tire bicycle race (noon) sponsored by the Coloma snowmobile club. Yes, join us for a great day of winter sports. Snowmobilers are also welcome to stop in for chili and conversation. Coloma, WI https://colomapathfinders.com/events/ or find us on Facebook at Coloma Pathfinders Snowmobile Club; 715-572-1354 or 715-572-8119

 Community Park, in ColomaWisconsin, Bayfield Area – Book Across the Bay Feb. 20: CANCELLED! See story at https://silentsportsmagazine.com/2020/12/19/book-across-the-bay  For more information on the 2021 Book Across the Bay, please visit www.batb.org or call the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce: (715) 682-2500.

Minnesota Mora Vasaloppet February 13/14, 2021https://vasaloppet.us/race-weekend/2020-vasaloppet-saturday-ski-races/ Press Release from the Mora Vasaloppet, February 13/14, 2021: We are happy to say that the Vasaloppet USA ski race is a “go” for 2021. We have prepared a comprehensive COVID-19 plan working within the state guidelines, and have engaged Kanabec County Health Department, Welia Health, and other key members of the community to create a plan that assure the health and safety of all skiers, volunteers, organizers, and the community. Link⇒: See complete COVID-19 plan details here. Be sure to (Link⇒) register now for your race as the number of registrations for each race are limited.  Live Facebook Broadcast & Complete Story with more updates links ⇒ https://silentsportsmagazine.com/2020/12/02/press-release-vasaloppet-usa-race-plans-dec-7-at-7-pm-live-facebook-broadcast/

IMPORTANT VASA NEWS: Received January 27, 2021: Extra Note from Phoebe Miron Kroll of the  Mora Ski Club: Bruce – We’ve changed the date and format for our Skijoring and Fat Vasa races, if you would like to update your website- We’re holding the Skijoring races on March 13th, with a start/finish window of 9am-noon… the courses – approx. 4K and 10K -will be well marked and skijorers will be timed but no other race support this year.  The Fat Vasa will be on March 14th – approx. 12K, 24K & 36K- it will be a self timed event – there will be a QR code to scan to start/lap count/finish –  with a start/finish window of 10am – 4pm.  All registrations will be through moraskiclub.org, nothing in-person.  We will also be holding the Founders’ Classic races – 5K, 10K & 20K- on February 21st in the same format- register online, self time, etc.  The Founders’ Classic is more of a family event so, of course, families are encouraged to ski together, otherwise, it is everyone’s responsibility to be socially distant.  Thanks! Phoebe Miron Kroll, Mora Ski Club

 Minnesota- MN Finlandia – Saturday, February 15 (tentative reformat planned, contact Minn Fin).                                           https://www.minnesotafinlandia.com/

 Minnesota, Grand MaraisThe Pincushion Winter Festival is listed as planned as Virtual for 2021:                                     http://pincushiontrails.org/ 

Minnesota, Mora Ski Club’s Founder’s Classic on February 23rd. Per Phoebe Miron Kroll: We like to hold those races at the Northern Practice loops where the Mora Vasaloppet was originally started but that is very dependent on snow conditions so we make that decision usually in early February: Website: http://moraskiclub.orgFacebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Mora-Community-Education-109945747240354/Email Phoebe if you have questions: phoebelu@moraskiclub.org

Minnesota – Events planned by Jan Guenther of Gear West:  February 20, 2021: Snowflake Race and/or the Inga-lami – Held at Baker Park in the Three Rivers Park District. Jan reported, as of November 28, 2020, that the events going forward during COVID will depend on planning with the park district as well as snow conditions, to determine the possibility of interval starts so the events could still happen. Per Jan: We can do it in some sort of healthy fashion that everyone will be happy with and feel, safe- An update to occur in January.

Michigan – North American Vasa, still scheduled for Feb. 13 & 14, 2021. Updates via: https://vasa.org/

American Birkebeiner Events

February 24 – 28th, Inclusive

COVID Impact Report: Ben Popp, Race Director, and the ABSF Team have expanded the event to five days, and have sent the following email to all registrants, also helpful to people still deciding whether to register for the race:

Dear American Birkebeiner, Kortelopet, and Prince Haakon Participant: Each registered participant of the American Birkebeiner, Kortelopet, and Prince Haakon races will have the opportunity to select their race day from available slots on one of the following five-days of Birkie Week: 

Wednesday, February 24th, 2021:  Skate
Thursday, February 25th, 2021:  Skate
Friday, February 26th, 2021:  Classic
Saturday, February 27th, 2021:  Skate
Sunday, February 28th, 2021:  Classic

Also unique to the events: Each wave will be limited to about 72 each. Racers will drive to the start area at Telemark and remain in their cars and will be called to the wave start via a dedicated FM radio station just for this purpose. The courses will be circular using the skate and classic trails and will end in a separate area near parking; water will be provided along the course through touchless systems, as used successfully in the Birkie Trail Run Festival; other nutrition will be self-provided. Bib pick-up will be via drive-up/touchless; masks required at the start/finish (of course not during the race).

Please note, you will only be able to choose from days that correspond to the technique you are registered for.  Prince Haakon skiers must choose to ski either skate or classic on the appropriate day. The course will be groomed differently based on that day’s technique. Change your technique or event here until Sunday, November 15 at 8pm CST; no changes will be allowed during the Race Day Selection process.  Change requests will resume on December 1. You will receive a personalized email from registration@birkie.com (American Birkebeiner Registration) with the subject: Race Day Selection.  Emails will be sent to participants in the order in which they registered for their race.

Watch for your email on one of the following days: Tuesday, November 17th: April registrations; Wednesday, November 18th-Friday November 20th: May registrations; Monday, November 23rd: June and July registrations; Tuesday, November 24th: August and September registrations; Wednesday, November 25th: October and November registrations

All slots are first come, first served. We encourage you to select your race day as soon as possible.  Race Day Selection emails are specific to each participant and cannot be shared with others.  You may choose the virtual race option at any time here. Virtual participants registered by January 22, 2021 will have their bib, participant hat, ski ties, and finish medal or pin mailed to them before the event. Please see the website for the NEW start schedule and cut-off times for each day.  The new schedule will be posted by Tuesday, November 17th
Questions?  Email us at Birkie@birkie.com.

 February 27, 2021    

Lappe Invitational Thunder Bay Ontario – https://www.lappenordic.ca/event-details/lappe-invitational/  -With COVID Impact   Guidelines

February 27 — (Link ⇒) North Lakeland Discovery Center Moon-Shoe — Snowshoe hike under a full moon. Sponsored by the MECCA Experience.

March 2021 Update / Links

Minnesota -Tour De Bemidji Saturday, March 6 or 7 TBD.

Minnesota, Minneapolis – 24 Hours of Wirth Winter – March 13 / 14Cross country ski and fat bike individual relay.  Report from the event website as of 11/28/2021: COVID-19 Update: The 2021 24 Hours of Wirth is currently on hold and registration is not open at this time. We are working hard to come up with a solution, but at this time it seems unlikely that we will be able to conduct this event due in large part to the need to provide participants with food and housing accommodations during a time when The Trailhead is closed to general use (including event participants). Website link: https://www.loppet.org/events/24hoursofwirthwinter/

Michigan – The Great Bear Chase March 13, 2021 reports as follows: Great Bear Chase Planning: Race is On, but changes in place November 4, 2020 – We have changed a number of aspects of the Great Bear Chase, including implementing starting corrals (basically waves of 50), no pasty lunch (although we hope to still provide drive-up pasty delivery), a limit on the total number of skiers, and more. See the following Race Guide Link for current details: http://www.greatbearchase.com/race-guide/   

March 13  — (Link ⇒) North Lakeland Discovery Center Owl Prowl— The educational program at the NLDC is followed by a hike at MECCA. Sponsored by the MECCA Experience.