Below is the initial FAQ
Q: What is the distance for the GSER?
A: 170.0km (105.6 miles), with 9464m of ascent and 10694m of descent.
Q: Are runners allowed to use poles?
A: YES, if they choose.
Q: Are runners required to take a headlamp?
A: YES, definitely. You will not do this without going through at least one night- bring spare batteries!
Q: Will there be aid stations?
A: YES! At Davon’s Flat (13.3km), Eight Mile Gap (27.1km), Upper Howqua Campground (50.4km), Mt Speculation (66km), East Buffalo Road (86.9km), Selwyn Creek Road (100.2km), Buckland Gap (121.3km), Tavare Park Harrietville (135.8km), and Alpine Park Wandiligong (162.4km).
Q: Is there First Aid help out there?
A: YES – our first aid crew includes staff trained in wilderness first aid and they will get to you where ever you are on the course. The emergency number to call will be provided in your runner pack. If you are in trouble and need help – please call this number. Put it in your phone prior to the start of the event. Also let runners around you know so that they can alert the next checkpoint. If there is insufficient reception to make a call, you can sometimes still get enough reception to send a text. Try that if the phone call fails.
Q: Are we able to have drop bags in the GSER?
A: YES. In particular, the checkpoints at Mt Speculation, East Buffalo Road and Selwyn Creek Road are not accessible to crews, so we strongly encourage you to have drop bags at these spots.
Q: What opportunity is there to use pacers?
A: From Upper Howqua Campground at 50.4km to Buckland Gap at 121.3km, runners cover a very remote section of the high country which will have checkpoints but not crew access. Runners can take a pacer runner for their safety to cover this section.
Q: Why are support crews not allowed access to the course between 50km and 121km?
A: This section of the course is very remote and 2WD access is not possible for the most part. A couple of roads do offer access to a sturdy 2WD car, but on very windy, narrow mountain roads not made for two way traffic. They are also a five hour return trip (at least) from the nearest towns, which places an unacceptable fatigue risk on crews. We recommend crews freshen up during this time, rest and meet their runners at Buckland Gap in the best shape they can be.
Q: Can you post my prizes out if I am not at presentation?
A: No sorry – we do not post prizes out. You may have a friend collect them just after the presentation. Uncollected prizes go back into future prize pools..
Q: What compulsory gear will runners need?
A: A detailed compulsory gear list will be on the GSER100 website, but in general, we require you to take equipment and clothing that will keep you warm and healthy in high, isolated alpine country, even if injury forces you to stop for some time.
Q: Do I have to have a crew to do this event?
A: No – crew is not a requirement, having said that they will make your life easier and also give you possibly much needed support along the way. If you choose not to have a crew – you will need to have some drop bags ready to be checked in the night before the event.
Q: What are the safety issues with this event?
A: The GSER100 uses established trails, it doesn’t bushwhack however some parts of the course are remote, steep and far from vehicle access. Runners will have to take responsibility for their own safety as it may be several hours before a race safety team can reach someone who has had an incapacitating injury, and then several more hours to extract them. Hence, you need to be well prepared and experienced in high country travel.
Q: What cutoff times are there?
A: There will be a 48 hour time limit to cover the full 100 miles. Checkpoints along the way will have intermediate time cut offs to ensure you stay ahead of 48 hour pace. Race staff also can withdraw anyone who seems to be incapable of continuing, for medical or other reasons. The withdrawal of a runner shall not be taken lightly and when required – for medical reasons will consult the event medical director.
Q: This is a National Park, isn’t it?
A: Much of the race takes place within Alpine National Park or adjacent State Forests. Please respect the environment and don’t drop litter, which is a breach of the race rules, and also of the agreements that let us use this pristine landscape. Also, crews- please do not bring dogs into areas where they are not permitted. There will be bins at checkpoints where you can offload your rubbish.
Q: How do I follow the course? Is it marked?
A: The race course will be regularly marked with lengths of colourful flagging tape. Junctions will be marked with extra tape (to catch your attention), arrows pointing the correct way, red Xs indicating the incorrect way, and other signage as we think is needed. If you travel for more than a kilometre without seeing a marker, almost certainly you are not on the race course. Please don’t continue the way you are going- return to the last course marker you saw, and work out where to go from there. In a race this big, you can afford to take a few minutes to make sure you’re on the right trail. Of course maps will be available, so please study them and also actually get out on the course where you can.
Q: Is there a short option, less than 100 miles?
A: No. But there is a relay option broken into three legs.
Q: Tell me about this relay option?
A: A relay team can run the 100 miles with changover points at Upper Howqua Campground (50km) and Buckland Gap (121km).
Q: What sort of roads will support crews be driving on?
A: The road to Mt Buller is sealed, although steep and winding. The drive to the first checkpoint at Davon’s Flat, via Howqua Track and Brock’s Road, is dirt but usable by any 2WD vehicle. Take care on bends. The drive to Upper Howqua Checkpoint via Circuit Road and Bindaree Road is similar- good quality dirt road that is usable by 2WD. The later checkpoints at Buckland Gap, Harrietville and Wandiligong are all accessible by normal, sealed road.
Q: Will I be in the hurt box during this event?
A: Yes indeed.