Competitive cross-country races around the world often have the same or longer day stages than the Arctic Circle Race. This applies to the Vasa Race in Sweden and to the Birkebeiner Race in Norway.
The Canadian Ski Marathon Race is similar in length to the Arctic Circle Race, but no other race combines the element of competition with a 160 kilometers adventure skiing race, happening in the wilderness over very mountainous terrain and with camping in the back country as part of the event.
“I took part in a 7-day, 440 km race in Russia once, but it was not as hard as this because of Sisimiut’s high mountains!”
That kind of long distance pain endured by body and mind is of course not something we all think of as entertaining. It is not only three days in the mountains, staying overnight in sleeping bags, and eating instant pre-packaged food; it is very much a do-it-yourself race, as you have to look after yourself, handle your own food preparation and your own equipment.
Yet, the Arctic Circle Race is an event for skiers of all levels of proficiency and every year there are participants in the Race from around twenty countries, including many Greenlanders. The Race includes amateurs, as well as professional cross-country skiers, so participation can’t be all that bad.