As I train towards my first ultramarathon, the 9Bar9x9 81Km Trail race in October, I have read several times about races that have a mandatory list list. The 9Bar race is based around a 9km loop and does not have a mandatory kit list, recommending only wearing trail shoes, carrying a charged mobile phone and having a torch if expecting to finish after dusk.
If you’ve read some of my other ultrarunning posts you will know I like having plenty of gear so I thought I would explore what makes up the typical ultramarathon mandatory kit list a little more.
Hopefully I will be entering races in the future that will require this kind of kit so it makes sense to start planning now to avoid unnecessary or bad purchases. For example, I will need a head torch for the 9Bar race so I want to find one that will be good for that race but also suitable for other races in the future, such as where I might need to run through the night or need more power.
Mandatory Kit Lists
I searched around the Internet and through the trail running and ultramarathon books and magazines I have and found one Site that stood out from the others. Centurion Running organise runner orientated ultra distance trail races in the UK and currently have around seven events of 50 or 100 miles planned for 2015.
Centurion have a mandatory kit list for each of their races and not only describe this in detail on their website but also have a really helpful video that shows one of their team fitting all of the necessary equipment into a 3 litre Salomon vest. I strongly recommend you visit the Centurion Running Site for more information.
Below is a list of the items I have most often found in mandatory kit lists for ultramarathons. The actual contents varies depending on the type and distance of the event. The time of year will also make a difference.
- Waterproof jacket with taped seams
- Waterproof trousers with taped seams
- Head torch with spare batteries
- Mobile phone
- Map of the route
- Water bottles or bladder
- Spare base layer long sleeve top
- Emergency food
- Emergency foil blanket
- First aid kit
- Something to carry the above in!
What’s In Your Kit List
I hope this post is useful to you. Are there any items you think I’ve missed? Perhaps there is an item that does not appear on mandatory kit lists but that you always carry? I’d love to hear from you so please leave a comment below.