Gear & Safety


SCI takes the safety of all the competitors seriously. Race officials will conduct an onsite safety briefing during the mandatory race meeting immediately following the Welcome Dinner on Thursday, September 30.

Each team is required to carry an SCI Mountain Challenge-issued tracker at all times while on the course (trackers will be provided on site at the race start). The tracker automatically communicates with race headquarters every five minutes with the precise GPS location of the team, and features a “help” button should the team require assistance. In addition, trail runners are placed strategically at checkpoints along the course to provide assistance to competitors if needed. Each team member must also carry several mandatory items at all times as a minimum safety standard. See MANDATORY GEAR section for details. 

A team of medical professionals (EMT and First Responders) will be onsite for support and emergency purposes. SCI maintains a written safety plan specific to the 2023 SCI Mountain Challenge that includes an overview of the route and identification of risks, as well as contingencies for everything from inclement weather, to accidents, to extractions on the course.


Each competitor must carry a number of mandatory items on his/her person at all times as a minimum safety standard while on the course.

There are additional mandatory items listed that are required per three person team.

For safety purposes, competitors will encounter checkpoints along the course where race officials will check for mandatory gear and issue time penalties for missing items. The following lists outline the mandatory and suggested equipment, and competitors may opt to bring additional gear based on their individual needs. The lists may be subject to change and participants will be notified of any changes in advance of the event.

Each person is responsible for carrying his/her own equipment and clothing for the climate, conditions and activities. SCI will provide Fueling Bags with snacks each morning, but competitors may choose to bring additional food. It is recommended that competitors bring at least 100 oz. of water up the mountain each day.


(one set per individual participant)

  • Waterproof jacket (this is determined by looking inside the jacket at the seams. If the seams are not “sealed” then the jacket does not meet the waterproof standard. Most GORE-TEX® jackets have taped seams)
  • Whistle
  • Emergency blanket (lightweight, Mylar-type material, thermal)
  • Headlamp or flashlight (cell phone flashlights do not apply)
  • Wool or synthetic cap (NOT cotton; wool remains insulated and will dry more quickly)
  • Capacity to carry a minimum of one liter of water (although it is strongly recommended to carry 3 liters)
  • Official race bib (to be given to each competitor at registration)
  • Face mask (to be worn when social distancing between other teams is not possible)
  • Hand sanitizer


(one set per team)

  • Antibacterial ointment
  • Small assortment of band-aids
  • 3” ace bandage
  • 6 doses of anti-inflammatory medication (e.g. Ibuprofen)
  • 6 doses of antihistamine medication (e.g. Benadryl)
  • Tweezers
  • Sunscreen
  • Lockable Pocket knife
  • Epinephrine for those with anaphylactic reactions (venom allergies, etc.)
  • Medical tape
  • Gauze pads
  • Matches, lighter, flint or other fire starting device


(not required)

  • Dry bag for all gear (Ziploc bags will work)
  • Neoprene gloves
  • Hydration pack
  • Extra pair of lightweight shoes (to wear in the canoe)
  • Visor
  • Sunglasses with retention strap
  • Extra socks
  • Anti-blister lubricant (e.g. Hydropel)
  • Moleskin
  • Easy to eat and access snacks
  • Bathing suit for heated pool