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Posted By Chequamegon MTB Festival | Updated 2019-09-21 02:39:09 in Bikes & Cycling
Chequamegon MTB Festival

Chequamegon MTB Festival

Venue - American Birkebeiner Trailhead
14875 Mc Naught Rd, Cable, WI 54821, USA

Start Date
Start Time
8:00 AM
End Date
End Time
11:00 PM


SEPTEMBER 19, 2020

Join us on September 19, 2020 for the 37th Annual Chequamegon MTB Festival! To enthusiastic off-road bicyclists from across the country, the annual trek to the Chequamegon (She-wa-me-gon) MTB Festival presented by Trek means fat tire racing and fat tire fun. Each year in mid-September, thousands of mountain bikers descend on the towns of Cable and Hayward in northwestern Wisconsin to take on the off road bicycle tests of endurance and agility offered throughout the weekend.

From the 27 cyclists who lined up to ride the unknown trails of the Chequamegon at the first Festival in 1983 to the sold-out, limited field that is filled on a first come first served basis, the Festival is one of the nation’s greatest grassroots events. The rolling glacial terrain of the area's forests provides point-to-point courses that are as beautiful as they are challenging. Combined with the congenial welcome of the Hayward and Cable communities who provide a tireless volunteer army, the support of Presenting Sponsor Trek and a cast of other generous sponsors, the Chequamegon MTB Festival has earned its iconic rank in the sport today.

The event is promoted by Life Time Athletic Events of Chanhassen, Minn. Local event staff brings hundreds of years of combined experience to the race weekend as well as nearly 500 community volunteers.


Friday consists of bib pickup, food trucks, MBR beer festival, live music, retail sales, miles of bike trails, great conversations, fresh air, clean water and countless stars.

Saturday, race day is here along with a full day of activities including, awards ceremony, live music, food vendors, beer, kids race, vendors and much more!


Location: Great Hall (American Birkebeiner Trailhead)

• 1:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Bib pickup, food trucks, MBR beer festival

• 1:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. MBR Festival, Sponsor & Vendor Expo

• Enhance your Friday night MBR Festival experience by purchasing a $10 ticket that includes: 4oz pours at six different breweries, one commemorative pint glass. Available to participants and non-participants. Beer will also be available for purchase. Must be of legal drinking age. 

• 5:00 a.m. – 8:00 a.m. Bikes can be dropped off and placed in your assigned gate corral at the Cheq 40 start in Hayward
• 8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. CHEQUAMEGON 40 bib pickup only at Primary School/Hayward
• 8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. SHORT & FAT bib pickup only at Great Hall
• 10:00 a.m. CHEQUAMEGON 40 START at Primary School/Hayward
• 10:00 a.m. SHORT & FAT START at The Great Hall 14875 McNaught Rd, Cable, WI
• 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. MBR Festival, Sponsor & Vendor Expo at Great Hall
• 10:45 a.m. Short & Fat First Finisher at Great Hall
• 12:00 p.m. Chequamegon 40 First Finisher at Great Hall
• 2:00 p.m. Short & Fat Awards at Great Hall
• 4:00 p.m. Cheq 40 Awards at Great Hall
• 4:30 p.m. Little Loggers Kids Bike Event at Great Hall
• 5:00 p.m. Bike valet closes at Great Hall
• New - 5:00 p.m. Sawmill Saloon is hosting the CAMBA after party
• 5:00-8:00 p.m. CAMBA Fundraiser followed by live music at Sawmill Saloon
• 8:00-11:00 p.m. Live Music at Sawmill Saloon


The race courses are fairly consistent in routing from year to year, however, each year's actual race course may be impacted by current weather and trail tread conditions.

The Chequamegon 40 and Short & Fat courses are usually marked by Labor Day weekend. Those planning to pre-ride the course please note that at the beginning and end of the Chequamegon 40 course the route crosses private land for which we have an easement only on race day. Also sections of the race course are on shared use motorized trails. Those users do not anticipate bicycle traffic on their trails other than race weekend. Caution and courtesy is urged. Some of the grassy trail sections may not be mowed early in the season.

The Short & Fat 16 race course is permanently marked as part of the Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Trail system. Only the last .75 miles or so is on private land at Mt. Telemark.

The course map is meant for a general reference and is not suitable for navigation unless you have a good sense of where the race course actually traverses. Remember that the race courses are not closed to other user traffic.

Any questions about the race courses should be directed to the race office at pspencer@ltfinc.net .

View the 2018 Chequamegon 40 and Short & Fat 16 race course map here


NEW – BUSING INFO – Chequamegon 40 riders only

  1. Busing
    • Saturday morning busing only
    • $10 fee per person
    • 2 pick-up times
      • 7:30 a.m.
      • 9:00 a.m.
    • If you’ve already registered for the Cheq 40 and would like a spot on the bus, please sign-up here: Purchase Bus Pass
    • 2 pick-up times
    • Bikes can be dropped off in Hayward Saturday between 5am - 8am in your assigned gate corral with your race plate number attached
    • All parking will be in the airport field across from the Great Hall

Race-day parking notes
As a sizeable fleet of out of town cars descends on Cable and Hayward on race day, one question is in everyone’s mind is, “Where do I park?” On race morning, where and how you leave your car will leave a lasting impression on the area’s residents and law enforcement officials. With common sense and courtesy prevailing, you can make that impression a positive one.

First, please avoid filling up the local business lots in Cable or Hayward with your vehicles. The area businesses will need their parking spaces for their regular customers while you are out cycling from Point A to Point B. In addition please observe all posted restrictions and respect private property access when parking on residential side streets.

To provide assistance on race day, yellow vested Race Official parking monitors will help direct you to designated large lots in Cable and Hayward. To help minimize the parking confusion, please note the parking recommendations and no parking restrictions. All recommended lots are within a short bike ride from the start lines. All area church parking areas are pending race weekend restrictions that may be required for church activity events (funerals, etc).

Parking lot recommendations in Hayward
> Click here to view the Hayward parking map
• Parking Lot - Fifth St & Wisconsin Ave.
• First Lutheran Church lot – Nyman Ave near Main St.
• Hayward Wesleyan Church lot – Hwy 27 & Nyman Ave
• People’s National Bank lot – Second St. & Dakota Ave
• Hayward Primary & Intermediate School lot – Sixth St. & Minnesota Ave
• Hayward City lot – Hwy 63 & Hwy 27

No parking areas in Hayward
• Main St between Railroad St and Wittwer Rd
• East side of Nyman between Main Street & Hwy 27 (it’s a bike lane)
• Please do not leave your vehicles in local business lots during the event

Drive times
• Chicago: 8 hours
• Dubuque: 5 hours
• Duluth/Superior: 1.5 hours
• Green Bay: 5 hours
• Madison: 6 hours
• Milwaukee: 7 hours
• Minneapolis/St. Paul: 3 hours
• Rockford: 7 hours
• Wausau: 3 hours


Selected forest roads normally open to vehicular travel will be temporarily closed during the Saturday running of the Chequamegon 40 and Short & Fat events.
> View a map of the road closings

Only rider support vehicles with vehicle passes, race official vehicles, local residents and hunter traffic will be allowed on the following roads from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. during the running of the Chequamegon 40 and Short & Fat events:

Town of Spider Lake
• Telemark Road/Spider Lake Fire Lane from Clear Lake Road north to the town line
• Boedecker Road from the town line east to Spider Lake Fire Lane
• Janet Road from the town line north to Boedecker Road

Town of Lenroot
• Boedecker Road from Northern Lights Road east to the town line
• Janet Road from OO north to the town line

Town of Cable
• Spider Lake Fire Lane from Telemark Road south to the town line
• Randysek Road from the Town of Cable south to SMT 22

These road restrictions have been implemented to increase the safety of the riders during the event.

PLEASE NOTE! Those providing nutritional support for elite racers along the race route will be required to obtain a vehicle permit from race headquarters prior to race morning to access the course.

Contact the event headquarters in advance at pspencer@ltfinc.net or stop in the race headquarters up until Friday the night before the event to obtain your vehicle pass. Thank you for observing the road closed signs and the instructions of the course monitors along the race route.

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