- The race website
- Prerace email
- Blog posts from race director
We'll give you some phone numbers at the race start for emergencies. If you have questions before then, feel free to contact us in any number of ways:
Pre-race checkin will be available Friday night (4:30-7:30pm) at Fargo Running Company, 1801 45th St S in Fargo, ND 58103. This is important as we have a large number of participants to process. The store is much nicer than dealing with paper, bibs, pins, etc. in the open splendor of Jorgen’s Hollow Campgrounds, especially if it’s cold and windy. There will be waiver sheets available, but it would be appreciated for each participant to print her/his own sheet from the website and bring it to checkin.
The store has a good selection of anything you need for your time on the trail.
Added benefit to coming to packet pick-up: Dr. Amy from Body in Balance Chiropractic in West Fargo, ND will be at Fargo Running Company. She will be there to answer questions about running issues, aches + pains, etc. She will also be taping runners that evening. Dr. Amy has tape that she prefers to use and sells for $20/roll. Tape is also available at the store. Dr. Amy will also do a single application taping for $5.00.
100K: Please make every attempt to make this Friday night check in, as things will move very fast in the morning. We will not be taking drop bags at the Friday night check in! Please bring them to the race start. Water will be available at the start.
100M: 100 mile participants can come to packet pick-up at Paramount Sports. However, there will be time at Jorgen’s Hollow Campground prior to the start for waiver signing, drop bags, etc. (updated 2017-03-01)
Race Day checkin: Available one hour before start or bus departure for each race.
|Start Time||Cutoff Time|
|100M||10 PM Friday||Midnight Saturday (26 hours)*|
|100K||8 AM (start at Jorgen's Hollow)||Midnight (16 hours)|
|50K||11 AM (bus leaves Jorgen's Hollow at 10:10)||9 PM (10 hours)|
|25K||1 PM (start at Jorgen's Hollow)||6 PM (5 hours)|
*The midnight cutoff for the 100 mile participants is suggested, but not a “hard” cutoff. Anyone attempting this distance should be able to maintain a 4mph average. As access by vehicle is limited in many portions of the Sheyenne National Grasslands, participants are responsible for making it from checkpoint to checkpoint.
Location and Course Description
Sheyenne National Grasslands, approx. 45 minutes SW of Fargo, ND. The race base (start and finish) will be at the expanded parking lot adjacent to the Jorgen’s Hollow Campground on Richland County Road 23 (6147 Co Rd 23, McLeod, ND 58057, see driving directions below). One of the bathrooms (primitive but private) will be open for our use. The drive from Fargo takes between 45 minutes and an hour, so allow time. When you come to Jorgen's Hollow Campground for your event, please park in the large lot off of Richland County Road 24. The Campground will be busy with 50k shuttle vans, starting line + finish line, food, bathroom usage, etc. Thanks in advance for your help. The parking lot isn't striped, so be visual enough to leave space for others when you park in rows as the day progresses. [Updated 2017-03-17]
Driving directions to get to Sheyenne Oaks Horse Camp, 1.2 miles north of race start (copied from their website): "Written Directions ~ highly recommended! GPS is great until you get almost here. If traveling west on I-94, get off at Fergus Falls on 210 west. Continue west to Breckenridge, MN/Wahpeton, ND. Bypass town on the north side and continue west on ND Hwy 13 all the way to Wyndmere, ND. Turn north on Hwy 18. You will pass Hwy 27 going west and CR 4 going east. Your road is next. Turn west on CR 4 also called CR 23. As you travel west, you will see a green SHEYENNE OAKS sign that directs you north. Follow until you arrive at camp which is on the right ~ east side. When you turn off Hwy 18, the last 8 miles will be gravel. If you are coming south to camp from the north, you will find yourself close to Leonard, ND. This is where Hwy 18, Hwy 46, and CR 23 all meet. You want to go south on CR 23 for four miles, follow the green SHEYENNE OAKS sign, go east one mile, continue south about 2.5 miles. Camp is on the left just past the Sheyenne River. The last 3 miles are gravel."
During the inaugural year (mid March) runners faced over a foot of brand new snow on the trail. You should be prepared for an 'all conditions race.' Yeah, it is possible that the trail will be dry and in awesome conditions, but it isn't exactly likely. While we expect some sections of dry and fast runnig, we also expect challenging sections of the race including plenty of miles of 'spring conditions'.
The NE portion of the course (all participants are in this section) is characterized by small but frequent rolling hills and oak savannahs. The SW section (miles 1-15 on the Grasslands map) which the 50k, 100k, and 100 mile participants will be on is more exposed, flatter, and faster than the NE area. The North Country Trail in the SW section is a bit more difficult to follow, but it will be well marked. Runners are responsible for following the route. The indentations in the terrain, as well as small rock gravel on the prairie are indications that you’re on the trail. Also, large wooden posts with North Country Scenic trail emblems on them are useful guides. Temporary markings for the event will be placed in this section, as well.
The 100M, 100K and 25K will begin and end at Jorgen’s Hollow Campground. We’ll be using the newly developed Oak Leaf Trail Loop for all of the distances. This loop is located to the east of the Campgrounds. There will be NO road running this year. Everything will be on the North Country Trail. Also, be aware that due to melting and areas where the water table is high, wet spots will occur. These can be by-passed if you desire, but know that your shoes and feet will probably get damp. The 100M, 100K and 50K participants will have sections of boardwalk or puncheons that will take them over areas that are usually wet and muddy
100 Mile - It begins at Jorgen’s Hollow Campground with 2 loops (8 miles total) on the Oak Leaf/North Country Trail. After these miles you’ll be on the North Country Trail until you reach the Middle Trailhead at Ransom County Road 53. (13.3 miles). At this point you’ll be on gravel roads going north, east, and south in order to return to Jorgen’s Hollow Campground. (17.2 miles) Once again you’ll go onto the North Country Trail. This time upon reaching the Middle Trailhead (13.3 miles) you’ll stay on the North County Trail until you reach the West Trailhead (15 miles) at Ransom County Road 54. At this point you’ll turn around and basically continue north on the Trail. Before mile post 10, you’ll leave the NCT to run on gravel roads going west, north, east, and south until you reach the Middle Trailhead (12.8 miles). At this point you return to the North Country Trail and complete your adventure at Jorgen’s Hollow Campground. (13.3 miles). Your total distance will be close to 103 miles.
100k - It begins at Jorgen’s Hollow Campground. It’ll be an out & back on the North Country Trail. At the Aid Station at Forest Road 1237 (see map – Exhibit A) you’ll have a short (2.7 mile total) out & back. This will be done twice (each time you get to this Aid Station). You’ll have access to drop bags at the West Trailhead.
50k - It begins at the West Trailhead of the North Country Trail on Ransom County Road 54 and ends at the Jorgen’s Hollow Campground. It’s a point-to-point run with an out & back at the Aid Station at Forest Road 1237 (see map-Exhibit A). If you need transportation to the West Trailhead, vans will leave from Jorgen’s Hollow Campground at about 10:10am. There will be a portable toilet at the West Trailhead.
25k - It begins by heading south on the Oak Leaf Trail. After a 4 mile loop which includes the North Country Trail, you’ll return to Jorgen’s Hollow. Now you’ll continue on the North Country Trail, basically heading west. At the Aid Station at Forest Road 1237 (see map-Exhibit A), you’ll turn around and come back to Jorgen’s Hollow and the finish line.
Please note the placement of aid stations in the map (Exhibit A).
100 mile participants, Forest Road 1237 Aid Station will not be in operation the first 2 times you go by this area. You may receive aid at Jorgen’s Hollow during your initial 2 loops and when you return after running on gravel roads. Middle Trailhead Aid Station will be operational throughout your run. When you cross State Highway 27, there will be water and calories. This is 6 miles from the West Trailhead and your turn around. Chances are it will be self-service. There will be two distances of about 17 miles without an Aid Station. There possibly may be a mobile aid station, but don’t count on it. If you have someone along as support, you can receive aid (hydration, calories, and encouragement only) on those portions of the run.
100k + 50k participants, you’ll have 3 major Aid Stations along your route. The self-service station along State Highway 27 will have water and calories only. This may be more important to the 100k participants, as the 50k runners should prepare to make the initial 15 miles with carried supplies.
There will be post-race refreshments, food, and camaraderie at Jorgen's Hollow Campground.
This year there will be a portable toilet available at the Middle Trailhead and the West Trailhead. Jorgen’s Hollow has enclosed, vault toilets for our use.
The Trail is easily followed due its usage, signage, and the gravel/ stone layer that is evident on the trail. Other cattle trails and vehicle trails intersect the North County Trail, but these will be readily marked to insure you remain on the Trail.
We expect the trail to be relatively snow free which is good, barring a mid-March blizzard. The SW section of the trail now has trail markers. In addition to our markings, the NE section will, however, have various style North County Trail markers as well as mile markers (see photo). Note, the mile markers count up from the SW to the NE and are approximate at best but can be used to determine your pace!
Some accommodation is available in Lisbon ND, which is about 25 minutes from race start. Fargo, ND is the nearest major city with ample accommodation options and is about 45 minutes to 1 hour from the race start.
If you want to camp at Jorgen’s Hollow Campground prior to or following the event you are welcomed to do so. As of now camping is free. There are two vault toilets which are in buildings. As of this time the pump to access water has not been activated.
Although there will be several aid stations, racers should be prepared to be self-sufficient and will be required to carry a minimum amount of gear. This gear list may be modified prior to race day depending on weather forecasts and/or actual race day conditions.
Emergency contact numbers will be provided upon check in. It is your responsibility to program these into your cell phone to be used in case of an emergency that requires assistance from staff organizers. It is recommended that you keep your cell phone off until you need it. If your battery is dead because you are taking selfies at every mile marker and posting them to Facebook we will not feel sorry for you when you get lost and get severe frostbite because you are unable to call for help.
Bold items are required. Non-bold items are recommended.
- 1 liter water capacity
wind/rain jacket (weather dependent)
1 liter water capacity
wind/rain jacket (weather dependent)
1.5 liter hydration capacity--the race will start with 16 miles without aid stations
Headlamp/flashlight* with extra batteries
extra mid layer
100 Mile and 100k participants will be able to have drop bags along the route. The West Trailhead is the only location for 100k drop bags. 100 mile runners can have a bag at Jorgen’s Hollow to access after your initial 38.5 mile distance. You can then have one at the West Trailhead Aid Station.
The headlamp/flashlight can be part of this drop bag. The bag must be clearly labelled with your name and sealed to prevent articles from coming out. You may leave anything you want in the sealed bag when you start the second half of the course and it will be brought back to the finish line for you. Articles not put in your sealed bag will be thrown in the trash.
As mentioned above, a phone number list will be provided to participants at check in. This is your lifeline. Although cell service is spotty, due to the flat nature of North Dakota most of the course does get it. We will have several vehicles dedicated to ‘extraction’ but if at all possible, please try to drop at an aid station. If you simply can’t make it to an aid station, we will ask you to describe your location in terms of last aid station passed, time on the trail from the aid station, last mile marker passed, etc. to determine the best route to access you on the trail. Be prepared to wait it out, help may take some time to arrive!
Following the races there will be an array of food and refreshments at the parking area. Brats and nonmeat burgers will be available on the grill. Chocolate milk, electrolyte drink, and juices will be available, as well. Bagels and cream cheeses will supply carbohydrate replenishment, too.
We welcome those of you with time and multimedia capabilities to participate with updates, thoughts from the trail, selfies, tweets, instagrams, etc. We will provide more details on how to do this prior to the race, but if you’d like to get a head start, please use hashtag #ENDSURE, stop by the ENDracing Facebook page or heckle us at @ENDracing on Twitter and @endracing_gf on Instagram. After the race, we'd love to add your race reports to our website, please send them to us in any format you want.