Online registration with early bird pricing is now open for the country’s top multisport event — the 44th annual SELCO Pole Pedal Paddle. This year’s event is scheduled for May 16 in the outdoor recreation capital of Bend, and participants can register as individuals, pairs or teams at PPPBend.com. Early registration pricing is available through April 9, and new categories and changes have been announced for 2020.
The SELCO Pole Pedal Paddle is a Central Oregon tradition that annually attracts thousands of competitors from throughout the Northwest and beyond. The multisport race includes alpine and cross-country skiing, cycling, running and kayaking, and stretches from the slopes of Mt. Bachelor to the finish line in Bend. Athletes of all ages compete in divisions ranging in skill level from novices to elite racers, and either individually or as part of a team.
New for 2020, participants will have the option of including a mountain biking leg in lieu of the Nordic and road cycling legs, and the option of “hiring” a cross-country skier from the MBSEF Nordic Ski program to complete what is typically the most challenging leg of the event.
“The SELCO Pole Pedal Paddle has thrived for generations because it is enjoyed every year by such a wide range of competitors, from less-competitive racers who are out to share a fun experience with family and friends to elite multi-sport athletes who perform breathtaking individual feats,” said Molly Cogswell-Kelley, executive director of the Mt. Bachelor Sports Education Foundation, which organizes the event. “One thing that has always remained consistent is the original spirit of the PPP. We are proud that the camaraderie and fun the event fosters — in addition to the celebration of all that makes Central Oregon an outdoors haven — lives on year after year.”
The individual Pole Pedal Paddle legs include:
Alpine leg: Beginning at the top of Mt. Bachelor’s Red Chair, participants sprint 200 feet uphill to their waiting skis or snowboards, then proceed down the Leeway run to the base of the mountain near the West Village Lodge.
Nordic leg: The 8-kilometer cross-country leg winds around the West Village parking lot before taking skiers through Mt. Bachelor’s vast Nordic trial system, finishing near the Nordic Center.
Bike leg: The 22-mile, mostly downhill bike leg takes riders from the West Village parking lot down Century Drive to the edge of Bend, finishing at the Athletic Club of Bend.
Run leg: The run leg departs the Athletic Club of Bend for a 5-mile single-track trail run along the Deschutes River, finishing at Riverbend Park. Kids’ teams (under 12 years) will take on a shortened course.
Paddle leg: The 1.5-mile canoe/kayak/SUP leg begins at Riverbend Park and heads upstream for one-half of a mile, before heading downstream for three-quarters of a mile. A final one-quarter-mile upstream segment brings paddlers to the finish back at Riverbend Park.
Sprint leg: Starting at the paddle finish in Riverbed Park, the one-mile sprint leg features a new course for 2020 that follows the paved path along the Deschutes River, taking participants to the finish line in the Old Mill District.
Mountain Bike option: New for 2020, participants have the option to complete a mountain bike leg in lieu of the Nordic and road cycling legs. The mountain bike course takes riders down Century Drive to Wanoga Sno Park, where they will continue along the Funner and Storm King single-track trails before exiting onto Conklin Road, then to Century Drive to the Athletic Club of Bend.
The SELCO Pole Pedal Paddle is produced by and for the benefit of the Mt. Bachelor Sports Education Foundation, which creates opportunities through competitive snow sports programs to support athletes in achieving their individual athletic, academic and personal goals. The cost to register in the early period, which lasts through April 9, ranges from $40 per team member to $80 for adults who race individually.
For more information or to register for the 44th annual SELCO Pole Pedal Paddle, visit pppbend.com.