The SEVENTY48 race brings paddlers, rowers, SUPers, and pedal-boaters from Tacoma to Port Townsend each year, and continues to grow in size and influence.

For 2024, SEVENTY48 will start in late May instead of early June, decoupling the schedule from its traditional position on the same weekend as the start of Race to Alaska. NWMC Race Boss Jesse Wiegel enthused, “2024 is the year that SEVENTY48 steps out from the murky shadow of Race to Alaska. It’s the largest SEVENTY48 ever—currently, we have 130 registered teams.” When asked how the schedule shift might affect the race, Race Boss rolled his eyes and declared, “There’s a 6% chance it will be slightly colder.” Mainly, it’s about giving these adventure racers more dedicated and deserved attention.

The SEVENTY48 race start is in Tacoma, as always, but this year it moves down the waterfront to the Foss Seaport Waterway, which has a long linear dock and a large building to house registration and the start celebration on the evening of May 31, 2024. The boat- and adventure-curious public are welcome!

SEVENTY48 co-founder and former racer Dean Burke says, “When we started this thing back in 2018, none of us had a clue what would come of it. Our goal that first year was to get 30 teams. Since then, more than 800 teams comprised of more than 1,100 people have been a part of this race, growing every single year.”

Burke brings it back to the humans whose power propels these vessels through the night (or two) and over 70 saltwater miles to the finish in Port Townsend, encouraging fans to visit the start and/or finish lines: “The racers who have shown up… their stories… the lives changed… it’s overwhelming. My only regret is that I don’t get to hear every single story. Walk up and talk to a racer, at the start or at the finish. Give a listen. You just might be inspired in ways you were not prepared for.”


Feature image courtesy of Dean Burke.