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Race Information

IMG_8389Winter Edition
Camp Roger, Rockford
January 28, 2017
Up to 3 hours

Join us for the 6th annual Winter Edition, the largest winter adventure race in the U.S. Experience trail and off-trail running (likely 4-6 miles depending on how many checkpoints you get), Amazing Race-style challenges, beginner to intermediate orienteering (map and compass), snowshoeing and fatbiking, weather permitting. Snowshoes and fatbikes will be provided but you may bring your own. We’ll enjoy the new Camp Roger lodge before and after the race, feasting on Honey Creek Inn chili and Peppino’s pizza.

Watch this 4-minute Go Pro video to get a first-hand feel for the race. Or view hundreds of photos from last year’s race.

Early (until 11/14/16): $66 per person, 2 or 3-person teams, with lunch, hooded sweatshirt ($4 more for 2XL or 3XL sizes)

Regular (11/15/16-1/18/17): $74 per person, 2 or 3-person teams, with lunch, hooded sweatshirt ($4 more for 2XL or 3XL sizes)

Late (1/19/17-1/25/17): $74 per person, 2 or 3-person teams, with lunch, no sweatshirt (we must order the sweatshirts by 1/18 to get them shipped in time; $20 after race if available)

IMG_5535We will add prizes for 3-person teams if there are enough teams to warrant it. Note that some challenges are for two people only.

On a per-hour basis, the Michigan Adventure Race is one of the least expensive races of any kind in Michigan.

Register here. 

Tentative Schedule
Early check-in: 
Camp Roger, Friday, Jan. 27, 4:00-7:00 pm
Same-day check-in: Camp Roger, Saturday, 7:15 am to 8:15 am
Race briefing:
 8:30 am to 9:00 am
Race start:
 9:30 am (waves at 5 minute intervals likely) 
Race cutoff:
 12:30 pm
12:15 pm  pizza/chili lunch begins in the lodge.
Award ceremony and raffle:


Required Gear
The amount of required gear and clothing has been greatly reduced. We are requiring a few items for safety but the other items are at your discretion.

Navigation/Compass Clinic
Join us for a free Navigation 101 Clinic at Robinette’s Apple Haus on Saturday, Jan. 14. Large group instruction (inside) followed by small group in-field practice with map and compass. RSVP on Facebook here.

We recommend using Kayak, Hotwire or another search site to gather the best hotel deals in the area. Candlestone in Belding will likely be your best deal if coming from the east. Many more options south and west of Camp Roger.

Camp Roger is located at 8356 Belding Rd NE in Rockford, just east of Pando Winter Sports Park. All racers must park at Bostwick Lake Congregational Church (or Lakes Elementary if the church lot fills up), both located at Belding Road and Young Ave. Please carpool if at all possible as parking is limited. New this year: wait at the school front doors for the bus (not the church since there’s no easy turnaround). We will shuttle you by coach bus to Camp Roger, which has only enough parking for volunteers and staff.

Please read through our standard race rules. Special rules that only apply to the Winter Edition will be listed in one of the race updates you’ll receive or on the race instructions.

Age Guidelines
We have no age requirements for the winter race.

Adventure racing isn’t the ideal spectator sport but we offer race maps to spectators before the race so they can check out some of the fun challenges. We encourage you to invite friends and family to check out the race and they can stay warm in the lodge.

We will race snow or shine. In the event of a thunderstorm or blizzard, we will postpone the race until conditions improve. During the race, please seek shelter during these conditions. No prize is worth risking your life. Race organizers reserve the right to cancel the event in the case of extended severe weather. We will do everything possible to get the event in, but refunds are not available if it is cancelled due to significant costs we must pay in advance of the race. We would provide you your race shirt and likely provide partial credits for a future race.

Sign the waiver and get your shirt, passport, and “bib” number at early check-in or same day at Camp Roger (NOT Gazelle Sports due to a conflict). You may pick up your teammate’s and/or friends’ number and shirt only if you bring their signed waiver. For early check-in, you may park in the lot on the hill where the lodge is and the new dining hall is being built. For same-day check-in, you must use the shuttle system.

You will receive a hooded sweatshirt with your entry if you register before the late registration period. Uni-sex sizing. The sweatshirts run a bit on the small size for uni-sex sizing so order the larger size if you are in between sizes. You can switch sizes once registration ends.

Click here for sizing specifications.


Charcoal heather hoodie with logo

Members of first place teams in each division will win a handcrafted medallion made from Michigan cherry trees.

Merchandise (available at race, limited quantities)
Sweatshirt, hooded, mid-weight $25
Short sleeve ($17) and long sleeve ($22) shirts
Buff headwear $10 ($18-$23 for most others)
Stainless steel pint $10 ($15 on most race sites)
Sticker (removable) $3

MAR hoodie mockup with RACE logo 150hshirt 275Hot coral women's croppedbuffpint 200hmar magnet 2 150w

Pre-race briefing
passport Feb1 gray borderWe’ll go over rules, answer any questions, explain the passport and hand out an instruction sheet and maps. Bring your passport with you. The passport is the piece of waterproof paper you’ll punch at each checkpoint to prove you found it so we can verify using the unique barb pattern on the punch that you were indeed there. At most challenges, you will punch the passport upon arrival and a volunteer will punch the box next to the checkpoint box if you complete the challenge successfully.

The map(s) will be topographical. Most, if not all, checkpoints will be shown. While not every trail in the area will be on the map, the vast majority will be. It’s critical that you do not lose or destroy your passport, map or instructions! You may want to waterproof your map with packing tape or contact paper (find at Meijer-type stores) as water can get into map cases.

The trekking/orienteering portion of the race is roughly 5-6 miles to get every checkpoint; most people will log 3-5 miles. We will refine this once the course is fully designed and testing is underway. There will not be a biking leg like in a warm-weather race, although a short challenge will require one teammate to ride a provided fat-wheel bike (fatbike/snowbike) on snow if you choose to do it. Should not be too difficult if the snow is packed.

We will note which checkpoints are “advanced.” Teams that are not going at a fast pace should consider skipping these as they require going a significant distance or over dodgy terrain to obtain. They are meant to challenge the elite teams trying to obtain all CPs.

Map reading will be critical. You should also know how to use a compass, although you may be able to manage without if you can navigate well with your map.

All CPs are optional.
The format will be “breakout” or rogaine style. You can get any checkpoint in any order. Teams will head out in dozens of directions. Ideally, this will greatly minimize lines. You can access gear and food from your car at any time during the race.

Water and Gatorade will be available at the lodge only. Be aware that water can freeze in the tube if you are using a bladder system. Try filling your bladder with hot water, blow the water back into the tube or use a different container. Restrooms are available inside the lodge.Suunto-Control-Marker-3649

Each checkpoint will have an orange and white flag with a punch attached to it. Look for the checkpoint number attached to the flag/punch to confirm which checkpoint you are at and punch the corresponding box on your passport.

The goal is to maximize the number of checkpoints on your passport within the three hour time limit. A team that gets 25 checkpoints in 2 hours and 59 minutes will finish ahead of a team that gets 24 checkpoints in 2 hours.

Please join us in the lodge for lunch followed by the awards. No cheap food – we’re bringing back Peppino’s Sports Grille pizza and adding Honey Creek Inn’s veggie and meat chilis. Feel free to bring one food or drink (no beer) item to share (e.g., 2 Liter pop, fruit, veggie, chips, cookies) for some variety. We’ll pass out some great prizes to the top teams in each division. We’ll raffle off a bunch of stuff too.

Charity Partner
A portion of the profits will go to a scholarship fund for kids to attend summer camp at Camp Roger who would not normally be able to afford to.

Questions? Our Facebook page is a great place to ask questions and get answers so others can learn from your question. For questions specific to you, email Mark VanTongeren, race director.

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