The Birkie is rapidly approaching! I can feel the fever in the air! You know it's Birkie time when your friends and relatives from far away start blowing in and assembling in Hayward. I just heard that Emalea Landgraf is back in town ready to give it all out there from Cable to Hayward like so many years before!
At this point, the only thing you can do is try to stay healthy before the race. Last year I was so sick on Wednesday that I didn't even know if I'd be able to ski. Conditions ended up being so bad last year that physical health wasn't even much of a factor. If you want to read about last year's race, check out this article titled "2014 Birkie Beat Down: The Beard Cost me 2 Hours" (I've heard that article called the greatest ever Birkie recap in the history of Western literature...I'm the one who said it, but it was said).
There's nothing in the forecast to suggest we're going to have a 2014 repeat. Just drink lots of fluids, stay healthy, and don't go out for any "hammer fest" final preparation skis. If you aren't in shape for the race now, it's too late to prepare. The Birkie is tough, this is simply not a race you can do unless you've trained.
I have to give a special shout-out to Marva Sahs who is making an attempt at her 28th Birkie. Honestly, I would have dropped out last year, but I knew she was in the race and she would have never let me live it down if I had quit (she's my mom :) ). 28 Birkies is pretty darn impressive!
For those of you doing your first ever Birkie, you need to read this article titled "The Ballad of Lone Wolf and the 2013 Birkie." This article has been called the greatest ever story of a first time Birkie Skier in the history of Western Literature (again...I said it, but it was said).
If you're fortunate enough to have some time off, I strongly suggest you head up to Hayward for the Birkie Fever Legacy Bash! The Birkie Office is in the middle of a tremendous fund raiser, and they are doing a great job making sure the Birkie will be here to stay for the foreseeable future! Again, thanks to Ben Popp and everyone else involved on the board of directors for doing such tireless work to preserve this awesome, awesome Wisconsin event! Tickets are $50 and proceeds go to the Birkie Legacy fund raiser, so it's totally worthwhile. Get tickets here. Read my write up about the event they did in Eau Claire here.
Finally, if you haven't picked up a copy of "Beyond Birkie Fever" yet, there's still time to get a Kindle copy and read the book to prepare you for the 2015 event. "Beyond Birkie Fever" has been called "the greatest achievement in the use of written language in the history of the human race" according to the internet, that quote is attributed to Abraham Lincoln. Honest Abe never lied. Get your copy here!
That's it for now folks! Get 'em waxed and get some sleep (also, check out our Birkie Checklist...print the checklist out so you don't have to think when you're deep in the throes of BIRKIE FEVER!!!). Good luck one and all!