Welcome to the Michigan Outback Relay!

2021 Michigan Outback Relay

The 2021 Michigan Outback Relay is now completed. Congrats to all that participated, and special congrats to the members of Jebs in Nam on winning the Jim Mitch Memorial Trophy for the Open Division and War to the Shore on winning the Punch Metcalf Memorial Trophy for the Mixed Division. We hope that everyone enjoyed the weekend and we look forward to seeing everyone again next year. Planning for 2022 is already underway! We hope to announce details of next year’s race later this fall. Thanks for checking in, and if you are new to relay, feel free to reach out with any questions about this unique event!

Alright, so are you ready to sweat, run, and have some fun?

Getting up before the crack of dawn, driving to the start and checking in for the run of the day couldn’t be any more exciting when it involves running along the Ausable River or lake Avery as the sun comes up.

The Michigan Outback Relay is a three-day summer weekend featuring the country’s longest and most challenging relay race run through the scenic upper half of Michigan’s lower peninsula. Great people, great runs, and great times to party after your last run of the day…

The Course

Are you up to the challenge? Three days of running over hills, through sand, mud, and water. In some years, there is a trek through the swamp and even a river crossing.

You will experience the beauty of the northern half of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula like you never have before – up close and personal. The course will take runners through state and national forests, over remote trails and roads, through sandy ruts, and of course over a few hills! All roads are runnable but not always drivable.

Michigan Outback Relay 2021

For 2021, we went back to a course we haven’t used for a while using the sandy horse trails of the Shore to Shore trail.  We started in Oscoda and ended in McKinley for Day 1, kept going on the Shore to Shore trail to Grayling on Day 2, and used our traditional Day 3 (with the new start) heading for our finish in Empire. Aside some grueling trail conditions, all teams were able to navigate their way to the finish. Planning for 2022 is underway. We will post updates later this fall. 


Each team consists of up to 10 runners

The Course

Are you up for the challenge?


Open and mixed divisions


What's new with the relay?

The race is run with the help of our friends at the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the United State Forest Service.