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Best Mountain Bike Events in the Midwest 2023

Best Mountain Bike Events in the Midwest 2023

The team at Strambecco rated the Top Gravel events in the Midwest for 2023 based on various factors, including reputation, route quality, location, rider feedback, and the overall uniqueness of the event or race.  Spanning Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Kansas, Iowa, South/North Dakota, Nebraska, Indiana, and Minnesota, the Midwest terrain features of Strambecco’s best list is generally flat or rolling. Still, routes often include steep short climbs with a significant elevation gain over the entire event route.

If we had to pick the best of the best, or those you’d classify as bucket list events, we’d recommend the Lutsen 99er, which is also a Leadville Race Series event and a qualifier for the famed Leadville 100.  The Checuamegon MTB Festival in September is a great fall event produced by Life Time Events.  Several National Ultra Endurance Series events are on our best list, including the Mohican and Marji Gesick.

Strambecco does not list every event.  We strive to identify and review events that are special and noteworthy.  If you have suggestions on other events, we should consider or review, please contact us here or send us a note at

rider crossing the bridge

Mohican MTB 100

The Mohican MTB 100 is one of the best endurance mountain bike races and events in the United States and is part of the National Ultra Endurance Series (NUE)! Riders will crisscross…

Lumberjack 100

A classic 100-mile off-road race featuring 90% singletrack terrain from the same producers as the famed Barry-Roubaix gravel event.  The Lumberjack 100 is for experienced mountain bikers from the sport level to…

Lutsen 99er

The Lutsen 99er movement continues, high above the shores of beautiful Lake Superior. This 99-mile course (69-, 49- and 25-mile options also offered) takes advantage of the scenery and topography of Minnesota’s…

Ore to Shore Mountain Bike Epic

Ore to Shore is set in the beautiful Upper Peninsula of Michigan and is an incredibly popular endurance mountain biking race that utilizes much of the same trail as the popular Noquemanon…

Dakota Five-O

In early Fall, the Dakota Five-O is a popular 50-mile endurance mountain bike race in Spearfish City, North Dakota. Riders enjoy the incredible single track, big crowds with many riders, and good…

man having to walk his bike

Marji Gesick 50/100

The Marji Gesick 50/100 is one of the best long-distance endurance mountain bike races in the United States and is part of the National Ultra Endurance Series (NUE). This is it; this…

Chequamegon MTB Festival

An extremely popular event that attracts thousands of off-road enthusiasts,  the 39th edition of the Chequamegon MTB Festival takes place in the big woods of northwestern Wisconsin.  The event is produced by…

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