The UP200 Powered by NMU
The UP200 is one of the top 12-dog mid-distance races in the Midwest and is also an Iditarod qualifier. The UP200 trail covers 228 miles of challenging terrain from Marquette to Grand Marais, Michigan, and back again through forested land and near-wilderness. Mushers face hills, creek crossings, deep snow, and isolated trails.
The first leg of the trail is from Marquette to Wetmore, a distance of approximately 66 miles on the upbound leg. The upbound checkpoint in Wetmore is at Timber Products. Teams will cross M-28 “on the clock” near Hiawatha Log Homes, with the State Police available to assist with traffic. After crossing M-28, teams proceed to the checkpoint at Timber Products. This is an assisted checkpoint, except for teams using the race as an Iditarod qualifier, and is also the location of a mandatory vet check for each team. Please note that spectators are not allowed inside the Wetmore checkpoint.
Teams will leave the Timber Products checkpoint early Saturday morning on the trail to Grand Marais. From Timber Products, the trail winds through Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and continues on to Grand Marais, approximately 48 miles. The Grand Marais checkpoint is the midpoint of the race and offers excellent viewing opportunities for spectators. The local Community Center is the checkpoint headquarters and visitors can have lunch, bid on items at a silent auction, and see the teams up close. Here the mushers rest, feed their teams, consult veterinarians as needed, and plan their strategy for the second half of the race.
The return to Marquette is over the same trail and again the assisted checkpoint is at Timber Products where handlers may help the teams. The trail from Timber Products to the finish at the Ojibwa Casino is 54 miles. The UP200 ends Sunday when mushers cross the finish line at the Ojibwa Casino on M-28 east of Harvey.
A total rest time of 16 hours is required, and the mushers decide how much rest time they will use at each checkpoint. A minimum 5-hour rest is required at the Wetmore checkpoint on the upbound leg to Grand Marais, but after that, it is up to the musher to decide when and where to take the remainder of the rest. Dogs may be dropped from the team at any of the checkpoints, and released to the care of team handlers.
The Midnight Run
The Midnight Run is an eight-dog, 82-mile race. This race is typically a faster race than the UP200. Midnight Run mushers will start in downtown Marquette, travel to Chatham, and then return along the same trail, finishing at Ojibwa Casino on M-28 east of Harvey. The Midnight Run draws some of the finest eight-dog teams in the region and the competition is fierce.
The Midnight Run start time is 30 minutes after the last UP200 musher leaves the chute, but not before 8:30 pm. This helps facilitate the downtown Marquette start while maintaining the overall race schedule.
Mushers travel 46 miles to the Chatham checkpoint at Michigan State University Experimental Farm, where they complete a mandatory 5-1/2 hour layover period. They then leave Chatham starting at about 5:30 AM and travel 36 miles to finish at Ojibwa Casino. The first teams start arriving at the finish on Saturday morning at 8:30-9:00 am.
Midnight Run Prizes
- 1st Place: $3,200
- 2nd Place: $2,700
- 3rd Place: $2,200
- 4th Place: $1,700
- 5th Place: $1,250
- 6th Place: $900
- 7th Place: $600
- 8th Place: $450
- 9th Place: $400
- 10th Place: $330
- 11th Place: $300
- 12th Place: $285
- 13th Place: $260
- 14th Place: $225
- 15th Place: $200
The Jack Pine 30
The Jack Pine 30 is a 6-dog that covers 26 miles of snowmobile and woods trails. The race starts and finishes at the First Baptist Church in Gwinn, Michigan.
The race starts and finishes at the First Baptist Church (195 North Billings) in Gwinn. The race trail is approximately 23 miles. The trail follows snowmobile and woods trails to Sands Station (approx 8 miles). From Sands Station, the trail turns Southwest for about 3 miles. Mushers will then run a beautiful 2.5-mile loop and return via the same trail to the finish. The few road crossings have many long-time volunteers assisting.
Community members are invited to the First Baptist Church to meet the dogs and mushers and cheer as the teams blaze away from the starting gate. While the mushers are out on the trail, people can enjoy the shops and restaurants in Gwinn before heading for the finish line at the church.
Mushers will meet after the race at Gwinn Baptist Church (finish line) where awards will be given for 1st through 10th place along with the commemorative Red Lantern Award for the musher who brings in the final team. The awards ceremony begins at 2:15 pm (estimated) so there is plenty of time to take in the race start, spend time in Gwinn, view the finish, and join the mushers and their handlers to celebrate this great winter event.