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Race #7 - Bluff Riders Charge

The Registration "Race #7 - Bluff Riders Charge" is not currently available.

Race Description

A longtime series favorite race, Bluff Rider's Charge has access to 7+ miles of wooded singletrack to tailor-make a different course for each category. Your beloved trails will be prepped and ready to shred, courtesy of the Mount Kato Trail Crew!

MNMBS, Mount Kato, and the Mankato Interscholastic Cycling Team are joining forces to re-energize the iconic Bluff Rider's Charge. All proceeds from the race will benefit More Families on Bikes, a Mankato-based organization that cultivates the family cycling culture as an independent activity provider.


The Registration "Race #7 - Bluff Riders Charge" is not currently available.

Start Times, Distances, Fees : ONLINE REGISTRATION ONLY

Class Start Time Approx. Distance # of Laps Early Pre-Registration (closes 7/22 @ 8:00 pm) Late Pre-Registration (closes 7/24 @ 8:00 pm)
Kids Comp 9:00 AM 4 miles 2 $18 $28
Citizen Men & Women 9:30 AM 8 miles 2 $29 $39
Sport Men 11:00 AM 12 miles 3 $34 $44
Comp Women 11:00 AM 12 miles 3 $34 $44
Sport Women 11:00 AM 8 miles 2 $34 $44
Elite Men 1:10 PM 25 miles 5 $38 $48
Elite Women 1:10 PM 20 miles 4 $38 $48
Comp Men 1:20 PM 20 miles 4 $34 $44
All riders 18 and under $23 $33

Racers who have NOT raced a Series race this year will pick up their race number on Sunday before their race.

Racers who HAVE raced a Series race this year should use their EXISTING race number and will NOT pick up a new race number for the race.

Race-Day Awards: KIDS COMP ONLY FOR 2021

Presentation ceremony for KIDS COMP awards will begin at approx. 9:45 am.


Pre-Ride-a-Palooza: Saturday, July 24th, 12:00 noon - 5:00 pm

Yes, it's back for 2021!

Free pre-ride? Yup, just sign-in with a representative of the Mankato Interscholastic Cycling Team and your daily trail pass fee is covered.

Complimentary hot dogs off the grill? You know it. They taste SO much better after a hot lap at The Mount.

Reindeer Games? Of course, even Rudolph can play...

Who: Bluff Rider's Charge participants, family members, and friends

What: Pre-Ride the 2021 Bluff Rider's Charge race courses*

When: Saturday, July 24th, 12:00 noon - 5:00 pm

Where: Mount Kato Mountain Bike Trail System

Why: soak-up the awesome Minnesota Mountain Bike Series culture and get some Mount Kato trail time!

*the elements of Kid's Comp will be open to pre-ride, the actual race course will be marked the morning of Sunday, July 25th.

2021 Race Course Descriptions

Use the 'Mount Kato Mountain Bike Trail System' link for a bird's eye view of the complete trail system, course map, and on-board video links!

*Specific course elements are subject to change based on course conditions on race day and discretion of the race director and property owner.

Kid's Comp

All new for 2021, the Kid's Comp course will be a 2-lap, 4 mile event using the Mount Kato trail sectors of:

Reed's Way, The Maze*, Back Home, & Cabin Run.

Spectators will have the opportunity to view and encourage Kid's Comp riders at their start, completion of Lap 1, and their finishes!

(*Kid's Comp will ride The Maze in the reverse direction (counter-clockwise) during their race. The Maze is NOT to be ridden in the reverse direction any other time, including during pre-riding.)

Citizen Men & Women

This classic 2-lap event at Mount Kato includes:

Kato Climb, Frog Pond Loop, Outlook Traverse, Back Loop, Gets Tight, Cedar Climb, Killer Toad Loop, Dead Horse, The Maze, Back Home, Cabin Run.

Sport Men & Women; Comp Women

Sport class riders have the added challenges of the Staircase climb and the technical descent of The Luge:

Kato Climb, Frog Pond Loop, Outlook Traverse, Back Loop, Gets Tight, Cedar Climb, Killer Toad Loop, Dead Horse, The Maze, Staircase, Luge, Cabin Run.

Elite Men & Women; Comp Men

This course includes crowd-favorite Mad Squirrel & the all-new Ridge Run you have what it takes?!

Kato Climb, Frog Pond Loop, Outlook Traverse, Back Loop, Gets Tight, Cedar Climb, Killer Toad Loop, Mad Squirrel, Dead Horse, The Maze, Staircase, Ridge Run 2.0, Back Home, Cabin Run.


Mt. Kato area maps

Mount Kato Ski Area
20461 Hwy 66 | Mankato, MN 56001

Driving Directions from Minneapolis/St. Paul and points north:

Take US Hwy 169 South from the Twin Cities to Mankato/North Mankato. Exit right onto Riverfront Dr. and go about 8 blocks--turn left onto Sibley (under the overpass) and continue six blocks to right turn onto Blue Earth Street. Left at the stop sign onto Hwy 1 (old Hwy 66), follow for 1.5 miles to Mount Kato on your left.

Driving Directions from points south:

Take US Hwy 169 North/60 East. Turn left onto Hawthorn Road/Hwy 90 and go about 2.5 miles. Turn left onto Hawthorn Road/Hwy 90 and go about 2.5 miles. Turn left on Hwy 66 (south of Mt Kato) and less than a mile from there Mt. Kato will be on the right.

Other Information

Camping is available at two locations near Mt. Kato:

Land of Memories

382 Hawley Street
Mankato, MN 56001
(507) 387-8649

Minneopa State Park

54497 Gadwall Road
Mankato, MN 56001
(507) 389-5464


Lodging is available at:

Hilton Garden Inn

20 Civic Center Plaza
Mankato, MN 56001
(507) 344-1111

AmericInn Hotel & Conference Center

240 Stadium Road
Mankato, MN 56001
(507) 345-8011

Mount Kato Bluff Rider's Charge 2015: Finally a Kato Race Under 100 degrees!

More than 400 racers turned out for great racing and great day in Mankato.‚Äč

By Troy Melhus

There are many reasons Mount Kato always ranks among my favorite mountain bike trails in Minnesota.

I spent nearly a decade covering the Minnesota Vikings — and their summer training camp practices — after which, each night, I'd ride over to Mount Kato for multiple laps.

I met my wife at Mount Kato. (True story: We met while checking the results posted on the side of the chalet at a Mount Kato race, nearly 10 years ago).

And now I have memories of our 4-year-old helping with handups and racing for her own medal in the series' kids race.

But my affection for Mount Kato goes beyond sentimental. The truth is Mount Kato is one of the best overall singletrack courses in Minnesota, from its lung-busting opening climb to the flowing singletrack on the backsides of this popular winter ski area. With its wooded terrain, quick switchback climbs, and rolling hills, a day at Kato for me is a day of pure joy.

Clearly I'm not alone. More than 400 racers rolled onto Mount Kato on Sun., May 31 to experience this annual rite of joy with me. The day could not have been better.

"These are the best conditions I've ever raced at Mount Kato," said Matt Kirk, a racer for the Bicycle Sports bike shop of Rochester. "First time it hasn't been 100 degrees."

Despite rain the previous day, the weather — and course — were in ideal shape.

"All the riders have been saying the course is great," said Matt Anderson, the Minnesota Series referee. "The riders have been really happy — it's been clean racing all day."

"It was tough but a lot of fun," said Hub Cycling racer Mary Gonzalez. "It's just very nice to have people cheering you on the whole way and have that support."

Troy Melhus is a former expert racer for the Peace Coffee Bicycle Racing Team and former reporter and editor for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. He still occasionally throws his helmet into the ring as a Comp single-speeder. You can reach him at


Mike Busch

Event Director

Phone: (507) 351-0781