I hope you had a great Christmas and wish you all the best for 2020!
Thanks to everyone who sent in their paperwork already. I am getting more on a daily basis. In a couple of weeks I will send out an overview that will show you what I have and what still is missing. That hopefully helps making the dealings with paperwork in Whitehorse as efficient as possible. I am still missing quite a few BICO certificates. If you have not done the online course, please do not forget it. Email me your certificates once you have it.
Now on to some more reminders and other little bits and pieces:
It’s of course way too early to say what trail conditions will be like. We have seen great winters with very cold temperatures and then all of a sudden it warmed up the week before the race which meant trail conditions became challenging. The Canadian Rangers have not decided which route they will take when approaching Whitehorse. If it is safe for us, we will stick to the trail we always use, i.e. even if the Quest goes via Lake Laberge, it is likely we stick to the traditional trail.
In general, be prepared for anything from hard packed snow, to icy surfaces, soft snow, fresh snow and areas with overflow. Think about how each surface will influence your feet/footwear. And of course also have the right solution for your feet if temperatures go down to the extremes.
The official gear check is January 29th from 11:30 to 14:00 at the Coast High Country Inn (Library). If you are doing one of the 4-day survival courses you do not need to come because your gear check is part of the course. All other ultra-athletes not doing a course please bring your full sleeping system, your expedition down jacket and your stove. Stove lighting will of course be outside – MYAU crew will show you where. Also, please no stove repairs or handling of fuel etc. inside the hotel!
Once again Primus is sponsoring your fuel and Coast Mountain Sports is helping with the distribution. So, to get fuel before the race, please take your fuel bottles to Coast Mountain Sports, tell them you are a MYAU athlete and they will then fill up your bottles. During the race we offer to refill your fuel bottles free of charge at Braeburn, Carmacks and Pelly Crossing.
Travelling drop bag
The 300 mile athletes please remember that we have a travelling drop bag, i.e. you will have access to one and the same drop bag at Braeburn, Carmacks and Pelly Crossing. This drop bag can have max. weight of 23 kg.
It is very important that you mark/label your bag with the words “Drop Bag” and your name and bib number. That way it can’t be mistaken for a crew member’s bag and accidentally taken to a place it should not be. The marking needs to be resistant to frequent handling and cold temperatures. I also recommend to not pack anything that breaks when it’s cold or weight gets put on (as we do pile the drop bags and store these outside in a trailer) and that you do not leave technical items like a camera or valuable things like wallet or passport in there.
I have received a lot of insurance paperwork and will get more in Whitehorse I am sure. I just want to remind you that I won’t be able to read all the small print. I get your insurance certificates and that means I can tick the box. It remains your job to make sure that your respective insurance is the right one for the participation in an event like the MYAU.
Please also remember to have your insurance information with you when you need to go to the hospital in Whitehorse. Also, you will need your credit card upon arrival at the hospital!
Labelling your food
Please remember to label all your food items with you race number.
Transfers for local marathon runners
Could all local marathon runners please send me a quick email to let me know if they need a transfer from the finish line back to Whitehorse?
As you all know, Muktuk is the finish line for our marathon. Locals are more than welcome to visit. To local athletes, please tell your friends and family who want to greet you at Muktuk the following:
- Dog trails cross the road down to the kennel. Drive slowly!
- When they arrive down at the kennel and it’s not obvious where to park, they should please approach Muktuk staff to ask where parking is possible. The road around the dog yard always needs to remain open.
- Visitors with dogs please check with Muktuk staff if it’s okay to take your dog out of the car. Under no circumstances may visitors leave their dog off the leash.
- Visitors who want to pet the Muktuk dogs may only do so after checking in with Muktuk staff.
Muktuk CP for athletes
We will keep the change implemented for 2019, i.e. athletes in the ultra-distances are not allowed inside any of the buildings. There are several reasons for this. For one, the moisture in clothing and shoes that was not too much of a problem outside, turns everything wet once inside a warm house. Also, as hard as having to stay outside is, it will serve as an early reminder what it means to sweat and then being forced to stop. We will have a very close look at how sweaty/icy the ultra-athletes arrive. If we notice that stopping outside at Muktuk gets you in trouble, we will only let you go again if you have shown us that you can handle the situation. This may include an enforced stay of up to 4 hours; time that will not be credited.
Remember: Try to avoid sweating and have enough spare clothing as drying things during the first 100 miles will be very difficult.
There will of course be a hot meal that you will get served outside. Please have your bowl and cutlery ready. Same for tea, hot water, coffee and hot chocolate. You can get a hot drink upon arrival and give us your flasks to be filled up with hot water. Please be patient if it takes a few minutes. There are times when a lot of people require large amounts of hot water at the same time, which can cause a bit of a delay.
We will have a wood fire outside but this won’t be large enough for more than 6 people to “enjoy” and certainly not sufficient for drying clothes.
Also, for the marathon athletes, please note that you initially will run past the turn-off where the ultra-runners leave the Takhini River to get onto the Muktuk property. To come as close to the marathon distance as possible, you will keep on running on the Takhini until you get to a turn-around spot. You then come back on that same trail and will leave the river when you reach the turn-off point onto the Muktuk property again.
Updates during the race
There are several ways that friends and family back home can follow the race and your progress:
- -On our website there will be a link to the SPOT Tracking page. Provided your SPOT works, your signal should be updating several times per hour and show on the map, together with some interesting stats.
- Also on the website there is a “Results” link that leads to a table showing all checkpoints and the “in” and “out” times for all athletes.
- Once again we are lucky to have the great photographers Mark Kelly and Joe Bishop with us. As images become available to us, these will be uploaded in the gallery on arcticultra.de.
- The most frequent written news will feature in our facebook group.
- We will also have a daily news update on arcticultra.de.
- Last but not least, we will upload images and news on Instagram.