2024 Superior Spring Trail Race Pre-Season Updates

Thank you for your interest in the Superior Spring Race 50KM, 25KM and 12.5KM. We are currently in the permitting process for the 2024 event. The tentative date for the 2024 race(s) is Saturday May 18 - the race having historically been held the weekend before Memorial Day weekend. Race registration is held via lottery as demand outstrips available race spots. The 15 day lottery registration period is tentatively set to open on Monday January 1, 2024.  The information currently available on the website is for the 2023 race - the majority of the information for the 2023 race will be applicable for the 2024 race, but there may be some changes. Most of the significant updates to the event website will be made prior to registration opening. If you are interested in running the 2024 race we encourage you to review the information that is available now, but require that all of the information be reviewed again once it has been updated for the 2024 race, and prior to you registering for the race. We reserve the right to make changes to dates, the course, logistics, cutoffs, entry fees, the registration process, and any other aspect of the event - that said we do expect that most of the details will be the same as the 2023 race. Final details will be published late fall / early winter 2023 - please check back. You can join our mailing list HERE. You can join the Rocksteady Running Community HERE. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact Race Director John Storkamp HERE.

2023 Lottery Selection

We thank everyone that entered the 2023 Superior Spring Trail Race 12.5KM, 25KM and 50KM lottery. The lottery drawing for the May 2023 event took place in accordance with our lottery protocol and procedures. Complete 2023 lottery drawing information can be found HERE https://www.superiorspringtrailrace.com/2023-lottery-selection/

Information for the 2024 lottery will be published on this page late fall / early winter of 2023. For your reference the 2023 event lottery / registration information is below. Please keep in mind that this information is subject to change for the 2024 race.


2023 Lottery / Registration Information

2023 Superior Spring Trail Race 12.5KM, 25KM & 50KM, Detailed Lottery Registration / Application Information and Procedures.  Race Date: Saturday May 20, 2023

PLEASE NOTE: Prior to registering you should review this page (registration info page) and the race information page / participant guide associated with the distance that you would like to run.  The link to register for the lottery is at the end of this page for a reason, please review all of this information in its entirety.  Thank you for taking the time.





The 15 day lottery registration / application period for the 2023 Superior Spring Trail Race 12.5KM, 25KM and 50KM races will open on Sunday January 1, 2023 at 9:00 AM CST and will close on Sunday January 15, 2023 at 11:59PM CST. The lottery drawing will be held thereafter with accepted registrations processed and the resulting start list published within 10 days of lottery registration closing (so, on or before January 25).


Do not enter the lottery unless you fully intend to register and run this race.  Do not enter the lottery until you have familiarized yourself with all lottery rules and procedures on our website.  Accepted applicants selected at the end of the lottery registration period will have their credit card automatically charged and will be officially entered into the event as a registered runner.  Once an accepted registration has been processed and published to the start list there will be no refund.  Detailed information regarding registration fees and policies can be found below.


History & Description of the Superior Spring Trail Race Lottery:
In the early 2010’s the Superior Spring Trail Race underwent a period of exponential growth. The last time we held a conventional registration process was in 2015 and the race filled in under an hour, crashing our registration (web) server many times over in the process. Registering had become a fast-finger contest for those that were available to be at their computers on the exact day and at the exact time that race registration opened. For the 2016 race the lottery was instituted in an effort to provide a fair and sane method of choosing the starting field.

The lottery and resulting registration is hosted through our registration provider UltraSignup. Those participating in the lottery will be selected by the race director and race committee in accordance with the following combined registration limit for the 25KM and 50KM races: 650 Runners and the 12.5KM race: 325 runners (these numbers may be subject to some minor tweaks).  There is no fee to enter the lottery.


If the Field Limit for Any of the Distances is Not Met Via the Lottery:
In the event that the field limit for any of the distances is not met via the lottery, remaining spots will be made available until the field limit has been met via a “conventional” registration process.


Procedure for Entering the Lottery:
To enter the lottery, applicants will submit their registration information (including credit card information) via UltraSignup during the 15 day online lottery registration / application period as referenced above.  There is no fee for entering the lottery, you will only be charged if you are selected to run the race.


Drawing Procedure:
Within 10 days of the lottery registration / application period closing, the lottery drawing will be held by the race director and race committee and the accepted applicants (along with those who qualify for automatic acceptance – see below) will have their credit card charged by UltraSignup. They will see their names added to the list of registered runners after the drawing and within 10 days of the lottery registration closing (so, on or before January 25).  Accepted applicants who have accidentally provided invalid payment information or have the payment transaction fail for some other reason will be notified with instructions on resolving the issue – if the issue is not resolved within 48 hours of the email correspondence their acceptance will be revoked / void and the spot made available to someone else. It will be the applicant’s responsibility to check their email and ‘spam’ as mail-servers sometimes ‘spam’ non-malicious transactional email from all types of companies / senders.


Applicants Not Selected:
Applicants not selected will find that their names do not appear on the list of registered runners – it will be your responsibility to check the list as we will not send out additional notification to those that were not selected. Those applicants not selected will not have their credit card charged.


Payment Terms and Conditions:
If your name is drawn in the lottery your credit card will be automatically charged and you will be officially entered in the race.  For those that are selected please note that entry fees are not refundable under any circumstance, race registrations are not transferable to other participants, future years races or other Rocksteady Running events, and transferring between distances (up or down) is not allowed. Please consider all of these factors very carefully before entering the lottery registration / application process.


Registration / Entry Fee(s):
50KM: $105.00,  25KM: $85.00,  12.5KM $75.00 – (plus UltraSignup fee).


Registration Fee Assistance:
Registration fees are used to cover the costs of producing a race, cover overhead and hopefully provide a little bit of a cushion / startup capital for the following years race.  That said, we do not want an entry fee to be the reason that someone cannot participate in one of our races.  For each race that Rocksteady Running produces, we will make available a couple reduced fee and / or comp entries for those in need. Please contact us via email if you need registration fee assistance and give us a brief explanation of your situation. Any assistance provided will be kept confidential. Please only request help if it is necessary, leaving the assistance for those that are truly in need.

Additionally, our Endless Summer Trail Run Series, which consists of four to five weeknight trail running races throughout the summer, with distances ranging from 5KM to 7 miles, is an ultra-low-cost event that is specifically intended to reduce financial barriers to trail racing. While the entry fee for each individual series race is only $25, we provide a full-fledged race experience including a giveaway, a chip-timed race, tons of experienced and friendly volunteers and refreshments after. These low cost racing opportunities are made possible in part by what are generally higher entry fees for our longer / ultra-distance races. This is one way in which we can all encourage and welcome individuals from all walks of life into our awesome sport.


Automatic Acceptance:
For 2023, the previous year’s (2022) male and female (overall) winners for each distance will be guaranteed entry, however we make no guarantees of these exceptions beyond 2023.  Those automatically accepted will be required to pay the full registration price like all other accepted applicants.


Automatic Acceptance – For Registered Runners Affected By 2022’s Change of Venue:
Automatic acceptance into the 2023 race will be given to those runners who were selected in the lottery / registered for the 2022 race. We are doing this because of the last minute change in venue that moved the race off of the Superior Hiking Trail for the 2022 race. This change was due due to weather / trail / environmental conditions that were out of our control – https://www.superiorspringtrailrace.com/2022-superior-spring-trail-race-recap/. Should these individuals like to participate in the 2023 race, they will still need to enter themselves in the lottery during the 15 day lottery registration period and pay the full entry fee. We will identify and select these runners using the email address associated with their UltraSignup account that they used to register for the 2022 race. If the email address associated with their UltraSignup account has since changed, they will need to contact us and provide us with the updated email address.


Waiting List (No Waiting List Will Be Kept):
Please note that we do not keep a waiting list. Instead we accept extra runners up front so that everyone has the same opportunity to train, make reservations, get a babysitter, etc. This means that a withdrawal prior to race day does not create an opening in the race field – it just brings us down to our predetermined field limit which is set in accordance with our permitor(s) including; the United States Forest Service, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Superior Hiking Trail Association, Lake County and Cook County.  We have found that a percentage of those chosen in the lottery will not make it to the starting line due to injury, illness, or other “real life” interventions and adjust the number of allocated lottery spots (registration limit) accordingly year to year based on historical averages.


Group Lottery Entry:
Runners may choose to enter the Superior Spring Trail Race lottery as a “Group” / with the contingent that everyone that has listed themselves as being part of the group are also selected (minimum 2 – maximum 6 people per group).  A group may be mixed between the 12.5KM, 25KM and 50KM distance. Everyone in that group is either “all in” if selected, or “all out” if the group is not selected. It is important to note that the groups name is entered into the lottery only once and is drawn against all other groups and individuals – entering as a group does not increase your chances of being selected.  The group lottery option was implemented solely for those that only want to participate in the race if their friend, spouse, family member gets in as well – if this is not you, then do not enter the lottery as a group. 

To enter the lottery as a group you will need to do the following:

1.) Decide on a VERY UNIQUE “Group” name.
2.) Notify everyone in your “Group” of your chosen name.
3.) Each individual within the “Group” must register for the lottery and provide their individual registration and payment information per the lottery registration policy and procedures.
4.) Enter your “Group” name where indicated on the online entry form EXACTALY as your group has agreed up (same name, same spelling, same spaces, etc.)
5.) Check the list of registered runners after the lottery drawing to see if your group has gotten in (group will not be listed, just individuals who comprise the group.)

Should your group get in, your credit card will be automatically charged and your registration will be subject to all lottery registration policy and procedures as outlined.

Please Note: Groups are for registration purposes only. There is not a team component to the Superior Spring Trail Race.


Qualifying Standards:
There are no performance or distance qualification standards that need to be met to enter any of the Superior Spring Trail Race distances.


Rights Reserved:
The Superior Trail Race reserves the right to allow into the race or disallow from the race any applicant (regardless of stated lottery procedures) as the race director and / or the race committee deem in the best interest of the race.


Cancellation Policy:
The Race Director reserves the right to modify or cancel the race or course for safety concerns, trail condition concerns or natural disaster. In such cases there will be no refunds of race entry fees. Each athlete must accept any such risk of their entry fee paid. There is no complimentary race entry to a future race. Entry fees collected are used to develop and produce the event, starting well in advance of the race date – including course preparation, race supplies, permits, administration, staff and overhead. We will make every effort to produce a fair and safe event for all participants. Any decision we make that impacts the race date or potential cancellation is carefully considered and based on the overall event safety, sustainability and manageability.

~ During the lottery registration period follow the link below to enter the lottery.

Superior Spring Trail Race
50KM, 25KM & 12.5KM
Lutsen, Minnesota
Saturday May 16, 2020
50KM 7:00AM
25KM 8:00AM
12.5KM 9:00AM

Registration / Lottery:
Opens Wednesday January 1st, 2020 – 12:01AM CST
Closes Wednesday January 15th, 2020 – 11:59PM CST
* Due to high demand, registration for the Superior “Spring” Trail Race is held via a lottery, more details about the lottery can be found HERE

Directions to Race Start:
Caribou Highlands Resort / Lodge
371 Ski Hill Road
Lutsen, MN 55612
Google Maps Directions HERE
Approx Travel Times
1:15 North of Two Harbors, MN
1:45 North of Duluth, MN
4:00 North of Minneapolis, MN

Terrain / Course Description:
The Superior 12.5KM, 25KM and 50KM Trail Races are extremely hilly, rugged and technical out-and-back (100% trail) trail-races which traverses the Sawtooth Mountain Range on the Superior Hiking Trail in the far reaches northern Minnesota .  The course parallels Lake Superior, the greatest freshwater lake in the world, climbs to near 2000′ peaks with breath-taking vistas of the lake and inland forests and crosses whitewater rivers and serene streams while meandering through mystic Boreal forests.  The races start and finish at Caribou Highlands Resort in Lutsen Minnesota.

Superior 50KM
25KM Out & Back Course = 50KM (31MI)
Elevation Gain 4,200 FT
Elevation Loss 4,200 FT
NET Elevation Change 8,400 FT
4 Aid Stations
9 Hour Time Limit
Starts at 7:00AM Saturday
Compete 50KM Info HERE

Superior 25KM
12.5KM Out & Back Course = 25KM (15.1MI)
Elevation Gain 2,300 FT
Elevation Loss 2,300 FT
NET Elevation Change 4,600 FT
1 Aid Station
8 Hour Time Limit
Starts Saturday at 8:00AM
Complete 25KM Info HERE

Superior 12.5KM
12.5KM Point to Point Course. 12.5KM = 7.75MI
Elevation Gain  900 FT
Elevation Loss 1,050 FT
NET Elevation Change 1,950 FT
NO Aid Stations
7 Hour Time Limit
Starts Saturday at 9:00AM
Complete 12.5KM Info HERE

More About the Area:
The North Shore of Lake Superior runs from Duluth, Minnesota at the Southwestern end of the lake, to Thunder Bay and Nipigon, Ontario, Canada, in the North to Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, in the east. The shore is characterized by alternating rocky cliffs and cobblestone beaches, with rolling hills and ridges covered in boreal forest inland from the lake, through which scenic rivers and waterfalls descend as they flow to Lake Superior. The shoreline between the city of Duluth to the international border at Grand Portage as the North Shore.  Lake Superior is considered the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area. It is the world’s third-largest freshwater lake by volume and the largest by volume in North America.  The Superior Hiking Trail, also known as the SHT, is a 310-mile long distance hiking single-track hiking trail in Northeastern Minnesota that follows the ridgeline overlooking Lake Superior for most of its length. The trail travels through forests of birch, aspen, pine, fir, and cedar. Hikers and runners enjoy views of boreal forests, the Sawtooth Mountains, babbling brooks, rushing waterfalls, and abundant wildlife. The lowest point on the trail is 602 feet above sea level and the highest point is 1,829 feet above sea level.