Rules

This is a self-supported event, so no outside help unless it is commercially available to all. If family or friends wish to visit you during your adventure, they cannot provide assistance (physical or mechanical) or food. Caches are not allowed.

Hotel reservations cannot be made prior to the start of the event.

Riders shall complete the course under their own power. Individual riders are prohibited from drafting one another.

 

Riders will wear helmets at all times.

Rider will affix to the bicycle their name, phone number and emergency contact name and phone number.

Rider must wear a high visibility jersey or vest (Amphipod type vest is acceptable) at all times and during night riding wear highly reflective clothing. 

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Wearing ear buds is discouraged. It is acceptable for the ear buds to be hung on the helmet straps and not affixed in the ears.

Bicycles shall be equipped with 2 head lights and 2 tail lights. A dynamo power source is acceptable however one of each type of light must be battery operated. A tail light shall be operating at all times. A head light shall be operating one hour before sunset to one hour after sunrise.

Bicycles will have reflective material attached to the rims or spokes in at least 3 locations, as well as on the forks (sides and front), on the chain stays, seat stays and crank arms.

 

Rider must have a working SPOT/Garmin tracker to participate and registered with the event tracking site (Trackleaders). It will be the rider's responsibility to do this. The tracker must be on at all times or at a minimum during movement along the course. Running in "stealth" mode is strictly forbidden and may be grounds for dismissal from the event unless the rider can provide evidence of their progress along the route at a reasonable pace. Loss of battery power is not an acceptable excuse; carry a spare set of batteries.

Pairs are allowed to combine their resources and may assist each other with mechanical issues. Pairs may draft each other but not other pairs or individual riders. One SPOT tracker per pair is allowed but highly recommended that each member carry their own. If a member of the pair chooses to abandon the event the remaining member must have the SPOT tracker in order to continue.

Safety

Please familiarize yourself with the event, including the route, the safety requirements and the demands of successfully completing the course. If you are interested in participating you should understand the bikepacking culture and evaluate your physical capabilities honestly.

The rider should follow good road courtesy by staying to the right side of the roadway at all times unless they feel it is unsafe to do so. Clearly, there are sections of roadway with virtually no shoulder so the rider should maintain a position as close to the fog line as safely as possible. If the rider chooses to ride in the traffic lane they must be aware of traffic from behind and move to the right to allow the vehicle a safer passing opportunity.

The rider should consider their position on the road with respect to sun orientation and vehicle traffic, and use good judgment if the headlight should be activated. If rider recognition may be compromised by weather (e.g. fog, rain, snow, etc.) the light should be operating.

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A rear view mirror is not required but recommended based on personal preference.

Nearly all of the route is grizzly bear habitat. However, the region north and east of Rogers Pass is an area where grizzlies are roaming into country they were historically very abundant. The Middle Fork of the Dearborn River drainage is a known corridor and riders are advised to use caution when passing through this area. The route also passes through an area along the Blackfoot River, north of Helmville, where grizzlies are known to frequent. A link to ACA's discussion and precautions to take when riding in grizzly country is on the Resources page. Bear spray rental is available in Bozeman and a link is provided on the Resources page as well.

During a Fall reconnaissance of the route in Central MT, rattlesnakes were observed close to the road. There was also a sign at the Lowry River Access on the Sun River warning of snakes in the area. Riders are advised to use good judgment when choosing to wild or stealth camp in this region of the route.

 

Grain harvest will most likely be winding down during this event. While riding the gravel roads in the central part be aware of grain trucks running any time of the day or night.