Course Description & Maps
Races in the woods and on trails require that the athletes stay focused – part of the event is staying on course. We cannot use permanent markings like paint in the park, so the course is marked with blue ribbons, blue arrows, and flour lines. And we have a great team of volunteer course marshals along the way. Please be mindful and watch for course markings along the way. Participants who miss portions of the course may be disqualified.
Paddling Leg – 7K
- From the start at Bde Maka Ska North Beach, the course heads around two buoys on the south end of the lake before turning north to the channel to Isles. On Isles, paddlers go around the big island and then head to the Kenilworth Channel. Paddlers then turn left to go around two buoys on the south end of the lake before turning north to the tunnel to Brownie Lake. The tunnel is narrow and requires boats to be single file. The paddle finish is on the north end of Brownie and you may use either of the two landings (2019 note: concrete ledges at both Brownie takeouts are hidden by high water. Approach shore with care).
- SUPs: note that your course goes straight from North Beach to the channel and does not go to the south end of Bde Maka Ska. This puts you in the main pack for the rest of the race.
- Note that weather conditions will be closely monitored and course adjustments may be necessary, e.g. high winds.
- The start is self-seeded. Slower boats/paddlers should start toward the back. The race will not start until all boats are behind the start line.
- All paddlers are required to report to the start area for an 8:30 a.m. meeting to discuss the course, safety and any last-minute changes.
- All paddlers must have Personal Flotation Devices in the boat and are advised to wear them.. Paddlers 14 and under must wear a PFD.
- Paddlers will be required to remove their canoe from the water and portage their boat a short distance (about 50’). Once the boat is across the transition/timing line, it can be left. Volunteers will move the boats into the boat corral area for later pickup. Paddlers continuing on the run may start running as soon as the boat is across the line. For relays, the timing chip may be transferred to the runner as soon as the boat is across the line.
- Any materials participants want at this transition must be brought in their canoe, e.g. running hat, running shoes usually worn in the boat, etc.
- An aid station will be at the top of the hill before crossing 394. The aid station will include energy drink and water.
- You are responsible for picking up your own boat after the race except for boats rented from Wheel Fun through Loppet registration (we transport those rental boats for you). The boat corral area will be monitored until 2:00PM after which all responsibility falls on the racer.
Run Leg – 5.5K
- Brownie Lake to The Trailhead. The run course is a mixture of dirt, grass, and asphalt trails through the park.
- The course is marked with blue signs, blue arrows and flour lines.
- There are four road crossings. Please use good judgement and listen to the police and course marshals.
- Near the 55 underpass, the run and bike course share the path. Runners stay to the left, bikers to the right.
- There will be an aid station with water and gatorade just past the Hwy 55 underpass.
- Keep in mind that the Tri-Loppet shares the park with other activities. Please be respectful of other park users.
- Participants may place their bike and other gear (e.g. post-race needs in a small bag) in the transition area at The Trailhead north parking lot starting at 7AM race morning. Please hang bikes by the saddle and alternate sides. Make note of which row you racked your bike so you know how to find it.
- Relays will have designated racks. The timing chip handoff must occur at the racks, not outside the transition area. The chip must be on the biker’s left ankle before they leave the transition area.
- There will be an aid station with water and gatorade for runners just before crossing Wirth Parkway to the transition area at The Trailhead.
- No riding is allowed in the transition area. You may mount your bike once you are outside of the transition area and have crossed the timing mat.
Bike Leg – 13K
- A mix of dirt singletrack, blacktop and gravel/grass trails. The majority of the riding is appropriate for beginner-level mountain bikers..
- The bike starts down the alley behind the Trailhead, up the “back yard valley” and on to the Area 36 Trail. These trails are designed specifically for event use. They are wider than typical mountain bike trails and generally do not have rocks, roots or obstacles. However, they are physically challenging, with some bigger climbs.
- From Area 36, riders follow the paved bike path past the Chalet to the flatter trails in the Conundrum trail section (skipping the big switchback climbs). They then cross Bassett Creek and ride the new 45 North trail section (if conditions allow) before crossing Wirth Parkway and heading toward Hwy 55 along Tornado Alley. A short loop on the south side of 55 and riders come back to the Luce Line and head back toward Theo Wirth Parkway. Expect a few fun “bumpout” trails along Tornado Alley and the Luce Line. Be aware that runners and bikers share the path from the 55 overpass to Theo Wirth Pkwy. Bikers please stay right. Finally, the course finishes with a trip west toward the Twin Lake Trails and then back to the finish along the edge of the Par 3 Golf Course.
- In wet conditions the bike course may be altered.
- Pass with care. Generally, alerting the slower rider by saying “on your left” or “on your right” is appropriate.
- There are two road crossings in the bike section of the course. Police officers will be controlling traffic. However, bicycle riders are still expected to use good judgment in crossing the roads.
- All bikers must wear helmets while riding.
- Bikers should proceed with caution, be respectful and ride under control at all times. Reckless riding that endangers other riders, runners or other park users may lead to disqualification.
- The finish area is located in Lower Stadium near The Trailhead.
- After completing the course, participants may store their bicycles in the secured bicycle area until 2PM. Please be respectful of participants that are still racing and give them right of way.
- Post-race refreshments including energy drink, water, and rolls will be provided.
* While Police Officers will be at all race road crossings, we want athletes to know that the roads will not be completely shut down to traffic. Athletes must follow instructions from Police Officers and always give right of way to emergency vehicles.