- Q: Is this race for me?
A: If you enjoy being in the outdoors, pushing yourself and experiencing new limits, exercising for long periods at one time, spending time with your friends in a challenging environment, a fun competitive atmosphere, and team-oriented tasks, then this event is definitely for you - in fact you will love it and be hooked to adventure racing!
- Q: Does everyone race on the same course route?
A: There is one Mini-STORM route and then are three main STORM race routes - one for Beginners, one for Intermediates, and one for Elite Racers. They vary in length, subsequent duration, and degree of difficulty (especially on the mountain biking section).
- Q: How long is the race?
A: Depending on which category you are in, the race is designed to take a team 4.5-6 hours to complete and ranges from 35-50 km in length. Exception: The Mini-STORM does not include paddling and is designed to take 1.5-2 hours.
- Q: What does the race entail?
A: The race entails multi-activity components including trail running, canoeing, mountain biking, basic navigation, and mystery team challenges. The intermediate and elite groups will also be required to use map reading and compass skills for an orienteering course section.
- Q: What level of fitness & skills are required?
A: You will be required to: ride your own mountain bike on single track and trails, and ride downhill sections, (and perform your own basic bike mechanics like changing tires - just in case!); carry, paddle, and steer a canoe safely with 3 people in it (in the same direction!); know how to read a map and use a compass (for intermediate and elite categories); and be fit enough to endure a continuous 4-6 hours of exercise in the outdoors mountain biking, trail running, and paddling.
- Q: How do I train for this event?
A: An adventure race with multi-disciplinary sports requires that you are fit enough to compete for many (perhaps long) hours in various conditions in the outdoors. You should be conditioned aerobically (endurance training) and trained for strength. You should be specifically skilled for each discipline (ie. canoe skills, orienteering skills, technical mountain-biking skills). We have organized a training specific for each race, please go to training clinics section for dates, descriptions, and further details.
- Q: How do I select the right team?
A: You want to choose team-mates with a similar level of fitness and the same race objectives, as well as the appropriate skills required. You want to select people you can trust in different situations - it is important to know their strengths and weaknesses, and how each person performs under stress and adverse conditions. It is also important to consider the overall group dynamics (and personality differences), as well as who is going to take the leadership role and when based on their stronger skills and competencies in different situations. Additionally, it is advised that you spend time training with your team so your expectations of each other in a race situation are met happily.
- Q: Is there a cut-off time?
A: Yes, for safety reasons and in order to get all racers back within 6 hours or so, there will be a cut-off location and time. You will be informed of this on race day. If you do not make the cut-off time, your team will be asked to go straight the finish line and finish without being officially ranked (NOR - not officially ranked).
- Q: What if I get lost?
A: This is highly unlikely as you will be given a detailed map of the race course route with trails, roads, and exit locations, etc. In addition, there are many mandatory check points along the trail with first aid attendants, water stations, and radio operators who will be able to assist you if you become distressed. These locations are also illustrated on the map.
- Q: Must our team stay together?
A: This is a team sport and your team should stay together. If there is an incomplete team at any of the checkpoints, you will be required to wait for your full team before your passport is checked and you are allowed to proceed. You must cross the finish as a full team or else you will be not be given an officially ranking status (NOR=Not Officially Ranked).
- Q: What if someone cannot finish the race?
A: You will be asked to escort this racer to the next checkpoint at which point they are allowed to drop out. Your team is allowed to continue, but will be not given an official ranking status (NOR).
- Q: Is there mandatory gear we must carry?
A: Yes, you must carry specific safety gear and extra clothing with you at all times or for specific legs of the race. You will be given this mandatory gear list in your registration package.
- Q: Is there First Aid on the race course?
A: Yes, there will be qualified first aid attendants and radio operators at key locations on the course.
- Q: Do we require a support person for our team?
A: STORM races do not require a support person; however, for some of the races, if you have your own canoe, you may require some assistance - please check the specific race section for more information. Of course friendly 'supporters' make for great cheering squads at key locations. This is an adventure race so your team will be required to stay self contained and self-reliant. You will be given instructions, tips, and details on how you can achieve this.
- Q: Can I bring my own canoe?
A: Yes you can. There will be a special area for you to put it in the park near the rental boats on the morning of the race. You may only bring/provide two paddles, but must have 3 PFD's and 1 throw bag for your boat.
- Q: Can I rent a canoe?
A: If you do not have your own canoe, you may rent one at an additional cost. The rental fee includes drop-off at the start as well as pick-up at the end as well as paddles, and PFD's. If you do not have your own OR if you do not have a support person (for the fall race), renting a canoe make your day a lot happier! Rental canoes are standard canoes with 2 seats. Please never sit on the thwart (the middle support bar) when you are paddling. Rental information is available for each specific race.
- Q: How many people are allowed to paddle?
A: You are only allowed two paddles in your boat so only two of your three racers can paddle at one time.
- Q: What about boats for Elite Solos?
A: Elite solos paddle kayaks, not canoes. Elites are responsible for providing their own boat, whether it is your own or a rental. Rental information available on the specific race page.
- Q: What is the mountain bike section like?
A: The mountain biking includes groomed trails, single track, logging road sections, up hills, flats, paved roads, and down hills - a good mix - a full range of technical ability is required especially for those racing in the Elite category.
- Q: Are there water stations?
A: Yes, there will be several water stations at key locations along the course. However, you are required to carry at least one litre of water with you at all times.
- Q: What if it rains?
A: Especially for our Westcoast races, rain is part of the adventure. You are responsible for ensuring that you are prepared for all weather conditions.