Photo Credit: Ben Jones

Have you ever wanted to take a selfie with a Yeti? Look no further than the highlight of every Midwest OCR fanatic's winter: The Abominable Snow Race. This isn't your typical OCR. Normal obstacles like walls, monkey bars, and bucket carries are leveled up by the chilly weather. It is conveniently located north of Chicago on the Illinois/Wisconsin border by gorgeous Lake Geneva. Everyone is bundled up in layers while they run, climb and swing… well, almost everyone.

David Hart impressively runs in a speedo every year.
Photo Credit: Ben Jones

The Venue

The ASR returned to Lake Geneva Ziplines & Adventures for their 2022 event. There was a 1/3 mile snowy stroll from VIP parking up the hill for the race. Registration wait times were similar to Tough Mudder or Spartan. Early Packet Pickup Friday night helped to curb wait times. Everyone was in good spirits despite the chilly weather. There were plenty of warming stations and fire pits available. This venue was set up perfectly for spectators- a giant bowl with obstacles lining the top and bottom. On the course we would climb a hill, do some obstacles, then go run a mile or so of trails in the woods, then return to the rim of the bowl for more obstacles. Downhill, uphill, repeat for almost 6 miles. The snowy trails through the woods were mesmerizing.

The first hill of the race and the first obstacle, Ice Breaker.
Photo Credit: Ben Jones

The Obstacles

Polar Vortex (pictured below) was the highlight for many racers. It consisted of a slip wall up to a cargo net suspended over a road. Racers traversed across the cargo net and climbed down the cargo net on the other side of the road. Siberian Swing, a series of straight ropes, was the band collector for the elites. Summit's Peak was one of my favorites: monkey bars to a straight bar then back to monkey bars. The Yeti's Lair was a deceptively challenging low rig set up by Race Ready Obstacles. Avalanche is always a favorite- participants flew down a hill in inner tubes.

Polar Vortex, built by the crew from Battle of the Lions.
Photo Credit: Ben Jones


The Pocketbook

Registration fees ranged between $80 and $125, not including available discount codes. Parking was only $10. There were excellent volunteer perks including a free race and a hoodie. This race was reasonably priced and preferable for a budget-conscious racer (like me) who wants to fit in as many races as possible each year. Registration for their 2022 event opened in September of 2021, and they sold out within weeks. If you want to come play in the snow with the Yetis next year, make sure to get your tickets ASAP!

The ASR Team raised money for the Lake Geneva Food Pantry.
Photo Credit: Ben Jones

Coming Soon

Loyalty Registration for the 2023 Abominable Snow Race will open on February 15. Keep an eye on the Abominable Snow Race social media accounts (Facebook and Instagram) to hear about an extra chance to get Yeti ready this fall! For more highlights and information, check out .

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