The Bell’s Beer Iceman Cometh Challenge is 30 miles of dirt roads, two-tracks, abandoned railroad beds and the world famous Vasa Nordic ski trail. This grueling Northern Michigan bike race starts in downtown Kalkaska and ends at the Timber Ridge RV & Recreation Resort in Traverse City.
On Saturday, November 5, thousands of cyclists from 36 states along with British Columbia and Ontario will gather for the race. Their ability levels vary from first time racers to Olympians.
This year’s pro men bikers include four-time Iceman winner Brian Matter; last year’s winner, Troy Wells; Brad White, this year’s Wilmington Grand Prix winner; and London Olympic competitor, Todd Wells, along with several other big names. The pro women competitors include 2016 Olympic bronze medalist, Catharine Pendrel; 2015 reigning women’s champion, Chloe Woodruff; and Erin Huck, who took 1st at the US ProXCT #1, Bonelli.
The Iceman course, labeled a road race on dirt, includes trail section highlights dubbed the “Steve’s Secret,” “Lombard’s Luge,” “Cassle Cliffs,” and “Ice Breaker” (the last hill to climb). Racers will wind through the incredible fall scenery of Michigan’s Pere Marquette State Forest.
After the race, bikers celebrate the sport of mountain biking at Bell’s Beer Sunset on the Season Party at the View Nightclub inside the West Bay Beach Holiday Inn Resort.
New to the area? If you are in town for the Iceman and don’t know where to start looking for lodging or places to eat, we have compiled a Guide to the Bell’s Beer Iceman Cometh Challenge.