The Drift takes place in the front-country of the Wind River Range in Wyoming. The terrain is rugged at times and can be thickly treed in places. The race is on United States Forest Service land, which is home to many different wildlife species, including moose, black bears, grizzly bears, mountain lions, and more. Wyoming’s Wind River Range is legendary for its scenery, its remote isolation, and its weather. Snow is possible any day of the year. Be Aware: This is a winter race in formidable country. You must be self-sufficient. There will be checkpoints with supplies along your route, but racers should not depend solely on them for safety, food, water or emergency first aid. There are gear requirements. There will be pack checks, and you will be penalized if you are missing any mandatory gear. Recommended gear is strongly recommended. Use good judgment when pulling your supplies together-winter racing is its own type of beast, and in the Winds you are at the mercy of the wilderness. Frostbite, hypothermia, dehydration, sun- and windburn are all very real and potentially deadly dangers here. Be prepared. Be overly prepared. Should you show up for the race under-prepared, it is at the discretion of a Race Director to determine whether you can safely race, and you may be denied entry, without a refund.

The gear lists vary by race, so make sure you are properly equipped!

13- and 28-MILE GEAR LIST:

MANDATORY GEAR:

  • Blinkie light
  • Insulated water container with at least 1-liter capacity
  • Top insulative layer. This can be down or synthetic, but it must be an insulated layer for emergency warmth-a shell alone is not sufficient.
  • Hat and gloves.
  • Food-use good judgment-physical output and winter conditions will necessitate more calories to sustain both endurance and body warmth. Plan your food wisely, and then pack more than you think you will need. If nothing else, you may be able to help someone else who is struggling. Remember, aid stations will have some food, but Drifters should be as self-sufficient as possible.
  • The Drift bib-issued at the pre-race meeting.

RECOMMENDED GEAR:

  • Know what warm weather gear you need to stay warm. Start a little cold. We have pulled getting soaked with sweat can end your race. Good layering clothing, perhaps more than one type. When out in the elements, layering is your best bet. It gives you the option to dump body heat quickly if you are over-heating, and it gives you the option to pack on more insulation when you need it. Absolutely no cotton should be worn or used. Wool and/or synthetic base layers are best. Wear wool socks. Insulation layers such as puffy vests, pants, and jackets (a jacket is required) can be either down or synthetic, and are extremely efficient at capturing and storing body heat.
  • Sunglasses or goggles. If it’s snowing, these can be helpful game-changers for preserving your vision while the snow is blowing everywhere. If it’s sunny, snow-blindness, which is about as fun as it sounds, becomes a real danger. Pack something to protect those eyeballs of yours. Nobody wants to come try and find someone who’s stumbling around blind in the mountains.
  • Spot or Garmin personal tracking device. The course will be groomed and flagged. Checkpoints are mandatory stops, so we can make sure everyone is accounted for. Should you get lost, a personal tracking device can locate you quickly. It also allows friends or family to watch your progress, which is pretty cool.
  • Sunscreen and chapstick. Remember that whole sun- and windburn thing? Protect your face and your lips so you don’t come out looking like one of those sad gas station hot dogs that’s been on the heat-lamp roller thingy too long.

100-MILE GEAR LIST:

MANDATORY GEAR:

 While we appreciate creative attempts to cut down on bulk and weight, the gear you use for this course must be able to serve its intended purpose. When things go wrong, and they absolutely might, you will undoubtedly appreciate having functional gear to survive through it. Feel free to email with questions. Keep in mind that while the Great Outdoor Shop is incredible, shopping in Pinedale is otherwise very limited should your gear not be accepted at the gear check on Thursday night.

  • Sleeping bag rated to at least 0*F. This must be the manufacturer’s rating. No combinations (liner+bag, puffy+bag), no promises you’ve slept in it in the cold before, no speculation. If the bag is not clearly marked it will not be accepted. You may use the lowest tested temperature based off either the ISO or EN ratings. Know yourself-if you need a bag with a rating that will keep you warmer, bring it.
  • Sleeping pad. This must be a real, R-Value rated sleeping pad. No creative substitutions allowed (no bubble wrap-really. Don’t be that guy). It may be a 3/4 pad, or a full-length pad. NOTE: your pad’s R-Value (even if it’s super high) does not negate the need for a 0*F rated sleeping bag.
  • Shelter. Tent or actual bivy only. Space blankets, shower curtains and tarps do not count. SOL Escape bivy will be accepted, SOL emergency or thermal bivy will not. Bear in mind that an open-style bivy will not keep snow out in blizzard conditions, which is when you are most likely to utilize a bivy…think about it.
  • 2 RED blinking lights. Yes, they must be red. We recommend higher luman lights. These lights must be on at all times during the race. Plan accordingly with regard to batteries and cold. Make yourself visible to snowmachines!
  • Stove with at least 4 ounces of fuel. Esbit and alcohol stoves are accepted, but TEST IT OUT FIRST. Often times, nonconventional stoves and fuel do not work in our altitude or temperature or winds. Pocketrockets don’t work great at altitude. Please test your system.
  • Cup or pot. You must be able to hold at least 2 cups of water.
  • Insulated water container(s). You must be able to carry at least 2 liters of water and keep it from freezing.
  • Reflective tape over your front and back. You must have at least 12 inches. Reflectors on the front, rear, and tires of bikes will be accepted, but you still need to have tape on your person. Do not skimp here. You must be visible to snow machines from all directions in low visibility conditions.
  • Insulated and windproof outer layer. This must have a hood or you must bring an insulated hat. A puffy coat with a hood counts.
  • Headlamp and batteries. You could spend up to two long nights on the trail. Plan accordingly.
  • Tracking device. Garmin InReach or Spot device. The Drift 100 has partnered with Trackleaders. This will allow family members and race directors to watch racer progress or lack thereof. If you do not have one, you may rent one for the race. This is REQUIRED for all racers, even those who choose to travel together. Although this does add an element of safety to the race, it by no means allows for unprepared racing. 2021’s nighttime temperatures reached almost -30*F and many Drifters faced problems with their tracking devices because of the cold. Insulate any electronics.
  • The Drift 100 bib-issued at the pre-race meeting on Thursday night.
  • FOOD. So much food.
  • Goggles. Sunglasses/glaicer glasses do not count.  If it’s snowing (and it probably will be), or it’s blowing snow (and it definitely will be), or if you find yourself on the back of a snowmachine these can be helpful game-changers for preserving your vision while the snow is blowing everywhere. If it’s sunny, snow blindness-which is about as much fun as it sounds-becomes a very real danger. Pack something to protect those eyeballs of yours. Nobody wants to come try and find someone who’s stumbling around blind in the mountains.

RECOMMENDED GEAR:

  • Good layering clothing, perhaps more than one type. When out in the elements, layering is your best bet. It gives you the option to dump body heat quickly if you are over-heating, and it gives you the option to pack on more insulation when you need it. Absolutely no cotton should be worn or used. Wool and/or synthetic base layers are best. Wear wool socks. Insulation layers such as puffy vests, pants, and jackets (a jacket is required) can be either down or synthetic, and are extremely efficient at capturing and storing body heat. Pack extra socks.
  • Sunscreen and chapstick. Remember that whole sun- and windburn thing? Protect your face and your lips so you don’t come out looking like one of those sad gas station hot dogs that’s been on the heat-lamp roller thingy too long.
  • Extra batteries. I know this is on the Mandatory list, so consider this a friendly reminder.
  • Minimum of 5000 calories. And it probably shouldn’t be all Snickers bars.
  • Neck warmer or balaclava. Be able to protect your face in the wind and cold.
  • Gaiters.
  • Duct Tape. Pretty sure you can do just about anything with this. Channel your inner MacGuyver and go wild.
  • Appropriate gear repair kit, especially for bikers.
  • Skiers and runners may consider using a sled rather than carrying a backpack.
  • Additional, varying thicknesses of gloves/mittens.

These lists are in no way comprehensive. Plan wisely. Know thyself. Be prepared. No one toes the start line planning to DNF, but it happens every year. Be prepared to wait for a ride for hours!!!

More questions? Check out the FAQ page!