You should wear or carry with you everything that you need to keep safe and comfortable during your Peak District Challenge (with the exception of water, food, and for 50-100km challengers a “half way” bag). There are no indoor or undercover resting areas during the event, (only at the start and finish), so you need to prepare to be outdoors for the entire event.
The list below has been prepared following the advice from the International Trail Running Association, the Fell Running Association of the UK, and qualified event staff. Our only motivation in designing this list is your safety; there is nothing unnecessary on it. The amount of kit is neither excessively heavy, nor expensive. Going without all of this kit increases your risks whilst taking part in the event.
Each participant must be equipped with:
- Waterproof jacket with taped seams and hood. Softshell or “coated” products are not suitable.
- Waterproof trousers with taped seams.
- Footwear with a good tread and ideally with high ankle support. We advise boots are safer than trainers.
- A warm jumper/fleece/primaloft, in addition to what you’re wearing to start the event, and initially carried in your bag. Real down not sufficient.
- Any personal medication you need, eg Inhaler, Epipen.
- A headtorch per person (Compulsory, for all challenges except Copper. Strongly recommended for Copper). A good quality headtorch will make a big difference to your speed and safety overnight, and we’d particularly recommend the Petzl Nao and Myo headtorches. Expensive, but really worth it. Sunset on 14 September 2024 is at 7.26pm.
- Drink bottle and personal snacks (you can top-up with food and water every 2-3 hours on average)
- Lightweight travel cup if you would like hot drinks at HQ or checkpoints. (We don’t provide single-use cups. Why?)
- Warm gloves and hat.
- Item(s) of reflective clothing. Armbands or clothing trim intended to enhance night-time visibility are adequate. (Compulsory, for all challenges except Copper).
Each self-navigating team (including teams of 1) must also carry:
- Waterproofed physical maps of the Peak District eg British Mountaineering Council Dark Peak, or both Ordnance Survey Outdoor Leisure Dark Peak (known as “OL1”) and White Peak (“OL24”) (White peak not required for Back Before Dark 10km fell race). Electronic mapping and the route guide we provide are not sufficient on their own.
- Minor first aid kit including blister and wound dressings. This can be self-assembled or shop-bought.
- A spare headtorch and adequate spare batteries, including for Copper and solo challengers.
- Separate, spare emergency food, not intended for consumption.
- Compass, for all teams on Bronze 50km and longer routes. We strongly recommend a “reputable” brand of compass (eg Silva)– in our experience, with compasses, you really do get what you pay for.
- Charged and waterproofed mobile phone (such as this 65g option).
- Emergency shelter large enough for the whole team as below:
|Solo entrants||Teams of 2+|
|Bronze and Copper Challengers||a) Survival Bag or |
b) SOL Emergency Bivi
|a) Survival bag each or |
b) SOL Emergency Bivi each or
c) Group bothy bag
|Silver and Gold Challengers||a) Survival Bag with Sleeping Bag or|
b) Emergency personal shelter providing significant thermal protection: eg 3-layer Blizzard Bag, or SOL Escape Bivvy, or SOL Escape Lite Bivvy.
NB: SOL Emergency Bivi; Rab Survival Zone, or lightweight “2 layer” Blizzard Bags are not acceptable; Nor are any other bag not pre-authorised prior to registration.
|a) A “Solo” shelter as listed in the left column, for EVERY member of your party, or|
b) One bothy bag large enough for your whole team AND one “Solo” shelter as listed in the left column (for an injured member of your team.)
- Survival bags are available to buy at registration for £5.
- Bothy bag group shelters are available from outdoor shops.
- Blizzard bags are available with 20% discount using code FAC20 from BlizzardSurvival.com.
- SOL Escape Bivi and Emergency Bivvis can be purchased through running and outdoor shops.
Optional items to consider
Bearing in mind that minimising weight will maximise your speed and comfort:
- A pair of walking poles
- Lightweight camera
- How much water is appropriate, based on the conditions on the day.
- Suncream and sunglasses.
- Dry socks and a change of shoes (Only on 50-100km distances, we can drop these off for you at a “half way” checkpoint if you bag them up and clearly label them. Bags must be as secure and well-labelled as they would be to be checked in for a flight. There is no facility for “half way” bags to meet you on 25km Copper route).
- Powerbank for your phone if you won’t be keeping it turned off.