Last year, we posted about the Birkie closing to registrants on November 22. This year, the race has closed more than a month earlier, on October 15. The year before, it didn’t close until December, and the year before that, it didn’t fill until February.
It’s particularly impressive that the race is as popular this year given the dearth of snow last year in the Midwest, and pretty much the rest of the country, for that matter. The race went off without a hitch, but many other races were canceled, and very many skiers were relegated to patches of manmade snow for most of the season. Yet the Birkie, perhaps owing to pent up demand from a string of good seasons, keeps chugging along. The two main races will see 9500 starts this year (perhaps a few more as elites add in) in Cable. And if it’s a good snow year, we might be talking about the race closing before summer is over next year.
(Oh, but if you really, really need to get your application in, if it’s postmarked by today and you snail mail it you’re in. So, find a late-open post office, scribble in your details and send it away, all while supporting the US Postal Service!)