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Required Gear


  • Canoes, paddles, PFDs ($30 rental, at cost). You may bring your own canoe and paddle gear or, for solos, your own kayak. If bringing your own boat, we’ll assume you’ll have paddles and PFDs. If not, email me. Specifications for personal canoes and kayaks are listed at the bottom of the page.

Per Person

  • Bicycle. A mountain or cyclocross bike is required. Road/city bikes are not allowed due to substantial singletrack mountain biking. West MI Bike & Fitness (call the Kentwood store; talk to Evert III) may have a few bikes available for rental. Reserve now if you need one.
  • Bike helmet (must be specifically approved for biking)
  • Spare tube
  • Tire pump or cartridges
  • Allen key set
  • Tire levers
  • 60 oz. of water or energy drink (in a Camelbak-type hydration pack* preferred). EACH TEAMMATE MUST CARRY THEIR OWN WATER/SPORTS DRINK and you must have this capacity during all legs of the race (if you are using water bottles on the bike to get to this capacity, you must maintain that capacity on non-bike legs)
  • Long pants/tights*
  • Water-resistant jacket*
    *Weather-dependent; a cold driving rain can quickly cause hypothermia. If the forecast calls for normal summer weather, we will drop the pants and jacket requirement in advance of the race.

Per Team

  • Compass - baseplate or sighting
  • Mobile phone, fully charged and sealed in ziplock or waterproof bag
  • Waterproof map case or doubled-up ziplock baggies for map. The map is not waterproof. You must protect it with contact paper/clear tape.
  • $10 cash for emergency food or water
  • Basic first aid kit (roll of medical tape, 2 gauze pads, 4 bandaids, 6 antihistamine tablets)
  • Emergency/space/mylar blanket* - full length, metallic style, $2-$3 each at Meijer, outdoor/camping store or online. *Weather-dependent
  • Whistle

Bill & Paul’s is offering a 10% discount up until the day of the race on the following with proof of registration: hydration products, trail footwear and socks, compasses/navigation tools, fitness watches (except Freestyle or Timex), headlights, nutrition, and paddlesport clothing.

Gazelle Sports is offering 10% any product in their store at early check in with bib number/proof of registration.

Suggested Gear – We recommend Gazelle Sports, Bill & Paul’s Sporthaus, and West Michigan Bike & Fitness for these items. They sponsor the race so please thank them when you stop in.

  • Contact paper or clear tape to waterproof your instruction sheet and map (at Meijer in household goods)
  • First aid kit
  • Trail running shoes
  • Outdoor/athletic socks
  • Food (energy gel, bars, etc.)
  • Spare tires
  • Tire pump
  • Tire levers
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunblock
  • Synthetic, wicking t-shirt
  • Bike shorts
  • Bike gloves
  • Camera

Prohibited Gear

  • ArtPrize only: Shoes with spikes. Recessed cleats on bike shoes ARE allowed.
  • GPS that allows you to determine your location on a map is not allowed. A GPS watch is ok, but only to check your route after the race
  • Motorized anything
  • Sherpas, pack mules, llamas, yetis or other living transport options

Canoe and kayak specifications
Specifications were established by Infiterra Sports. Canoes must be open bowed and have two or more actual seats. Canoes can have a maximum length of 19ft with a minimum width following the ratio of 0.1625 x length. For example, typical canoe lengths are listed below with their associated minimum widths:

 Length (ft) Min Width (in)
14.0 27
14.5 28
15.0 29
15.5 30
16.0 31
16.5 32
17.0 33
17.5 34
18.0 35
18.5 36
19.0 37

Two person teams will paddle in one canoe and four person teams will paddle in two canoes unless otherwise specified for a particular race.

Kayaks used by solo racers cannot be inflatable but may be “sit-on-top” since the race is expected to be in warm weather. Standard sea kayaks, usually around 12-17 feet, are approved types.

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