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Here Comes the Pre-Birkie!

Back when the Pre-Birkie was only 26K, it was probably my favorite race of the year, it was short enough, yet difficult enough to really let you know where you were at just a few weeks before the Birkie (and even if you weren't in good enough shape, at 26K you were probably going to manage to shuffle in somehow).

However, recently somebody got the brilliant idea to offer a 42K event for the Pre-Birkie weekend, and I was stupid enough to go ahead and sign up for it. It seemed like a good idea at the time a few weeks ago, I figured I'd do the City of Lakes Loppet at 33K, the Pre-Birkie at 42, and then the Birkie at 52. It was a logical progression. However, once I thought about it, I kind of came to the conclusion that the Pre-Birkie is probably a tougher race than the Birkie.

The problem is that starting on lake Hayward and heading North, you're essentially going entirely uphill. To make matters worse, you're then required to head up the divide and you only get to turn around at about the highest point of the course.


For those of you on the team who somehow managed to put off signing up for the Birkie for so long that it closed up on you (cough...cough...Chris Wallace...Cough...) I suppose you could salvage a meager amount of pride by coughing it up for the Pre-Birkie. This is going to be a great race, and I think they'll take stragglers right to the bitter end (I hope so anyway, or I'm not going to be allowed to finish). Here's the web page.

Back in the old days, THIS was the weekend that defined your Birkie. We always used to do the Pre-Birkie, Mora Vasaloppet double header. Well, now that the Pre-Birkie is 42K, I think those days of the double are long gone. Too bad, that was some epic stuff (we might have to aim for it next year).

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