Snowmobile & Sno-Bike Hillclimbs!

January 16, 2023

Two of the biggest snowmobile events in the Copper Country includes the Feb 4th and 5th Vollwerth’s Meat’s-Wildlife Refuge Cabins-Pat’s Motorsports WINTERNATIONALS Hillclimb and the Feb 25-26th World Championship Qualifier.  Both of these challenging Hillclimbs takes place at Whealkate Bluff in South Range.

Whealkate Photo Sno Bike

This year’s Hillclimbs will be the most challenging of all the hillclimbs that has taken place since the 1st MASTERS Hillclimb in 1991.  The MASTERS, which stands for Mid America Snow & Terrain Expert Racers, is one of the longest running Snowmobile Sanctioning organizations in the Midwest.  It is the organization that brought ‘true’ Snowmobile Hillclimbs to the Midwest.

It is at these Hillclimbs that competitors will have the chance to qualify for the World Championship Hillclimb in Jackson, Wyoming.  The popular circuit has had 2 of its racers that went on to qualify for the World Championship at Snow King in Jackson.


That is Jordan Stank, a MTU Grad, and the Pat’s Motorsports team member or Tyler Robinson.  The Circuit has consistently sent 4 to 10 of its racers to compete at the World Championship.  To qualify the riders have to win their class and win the Pro Stock King of the Hill and the Pro Mod King of the Hill at the Feb 4-5 WINTERNATIONALS.  The final opportunity to advance will be at the Feb 25-26th Hillclimb.

This year the MTU Sledheads will be clearing the side of the ‘cut’ in the hill.  The Pro Drivers will have to climb a 5-10 foot cliff on the side of the hill, than jump down to the cut to go around the gates.   The climb gets even more difficult as they then will have to make it through the timing Shute at the ‘Wall.’  The ‘Wall’ is at the top of the steep Whealkate Bluff.

The qualifying for the finals will be on the Saturday of the two Hillclimbs.  The Kids, Junior, Women, MTU Sledheads Vintage, Public Vintage, and Sno Bikes will run first on Saturday.  After those classes run, the Pro Stock and Pro Mod classes will begin Qualifying.

The top racers in each of the Pro Divisions will come back to run in the Finals on Sunday.  The winner of each class will qualify for the coveted King of the Hill shoot-out.

Whealkate 2022 Kids in Keweenaw Winners Circle

The Kids 120’s and 250’s will run a Terra-X style course at the bottom of the hill.  The Vintage racers will get a long run and go straight up the hill.  The Junior and Women’s class will only run a limited amount of gates.  Snow Bikes will run around the gates, and the Pro Drivers will run around all the gates.

That is if any of them can successfully make it around all the gates to get to the Wall at the top of the Hill.  In the past usually only 2 out of 10 attempts make it over the Wall during Pro Qualifying. The rest will get help from the members of the Sigma Tau Gamma Fraternity.

Due to health reasons, End of the Earth Entertainment will not be doing the Video or streaming the competition.  The MASTERS is currently looking for another Video Service that can do a Video of the Hillclimb and possibly offer live streaming.

The Hillclimbs has had a Cash Purse of over $5000 in the past and expect the purse to be around that once again this year.  

The competition brings in racers from all over the Midwest, along with a huge crowd.  The fans can watch the competition right from their vehicle.  “That is providing they get to the Hillclimb right away in the morning.

The competition will start around 10:00 am ET and run till around 4:00 on Saturday.  The competition will start at 11:00 am ET on Sunday and end around 3:30 pm ET.  Gate Admission is $10/person with Vehicle parking only $10.  Dogfathers Concessions will be on the grounds.

MASTERS WINTERNATIONALS 2021 Brandon Jilbert roll over Pic 1

Final Racer registration is on the Friday Night before the Hillclimb.  There is no registration on the day of the Hillclimb.  Racers can Pre-Register and not need to be at the hill until Saturday Morning for the Mandatory Drivers Meeting at 9:30.  

Registration and more information can be found at or by the Masters Racing Circuit Facebook page.

‘If you’ve got the GUTS, we’ve got the Hill!’

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