Q: There are several maps available for the Mournes, is there one recommended for this event?
The course has been planned on the Mourne Mountains 1:25,000 map (1st edition) from Harvey Maps. There is a 2nd edition 2014 version of this map but the controls will be placed on features that are correctly shown on both versions. The OSNI activity Map of The Mournes won’t be as useful. Both maps are available from any good online or local retailer – including our superb sponsors – Jackson Sports. WE DO NOT SUPPLY maps as part of the entry process.
Q: What is a 1 season sleeping bag?
We chose a “1 season” sleeping bag as a MINIMUM safe standard. Combined with your clothing and hot food you should be able to survive a night in the Mournes in September without coming to harm. Beyond that, any need for comfort is up to individuals. Standards vary between manufacturers but typically “1 season” means a lower comfort limit of 5degC (as defined by EN13537)
Q: How do I know what type of equipment to buy?
Some modern hi-tech bits of gear are reasonable replacements for bulkier and heavier “traditional” equipment. The key thing is that the safety functionality and performance of this gear must be at least as good as that of the gear specified in the rules. There is so much gear on the marker that we can’t possibly check it all out. If you are in doubt please contact us but bear in mind that we will err on the side of caution and may refuse some products if we can’t be confident that they meet the grade.
Q: Are bivy bags allowed for camping?
No. Not instead of a tent. Teams must carry a proper tent with sewn-in groundsheet: it must be manufactured as a tent and not as a bivy or something else. One survival bag is ALSO required.
Q: Why can we not use two separate one-man tents?
The MMM is a TEAM event and we believe that part of that experience is sharing your tent – for better or for worse. Allowing two smaller tents would also give us problems with enforcing the rules around bivy bags and what constitutes a tent.
Q: Can we use a GPS?
NOT FOR NAVIGATION – GPS watches are common for tracking courses and post-event analysis. We think they’re great. Many mobile phones also have GPS with, at very least, basic map functionality. We don’t consider this to be of much use in mountain navigation and therefore not an issue. However, you can also install proper GPS navigation apps with OS based maps. Use of these apps or any dedicated GPS navigation device is not allowed as they provide considerable competitive advantage and are very much against the spirit of a mountain marathon. We can’t practicably check everyone for these devices so we are relying on peoples’ integrity. However, if someone is spotted and reported using GPS to navigate we will do a kit check and if the offence is confirmed the team will be disqualified. Altimeters are allowed.
Q: Can I use a GPS tracker watch?
NOT FOR NAVIGATION but – GPS tracker and pace watches are allowed. These are great for tracking courses and post-event analysis. To support this fun activity provide a number of USB charge points at the overnight camp so bring your charger lead along.
Q: Are mobile phones allowed?
Yes, A mobile phone is great for use in emergencies and should be kept safely wrapped in a plastic bag in your rucksack or an inside pocket.We are aware that many smartphones have mapping and GPS capability. USE OF THE GPS NAVIGATION FUNCTION IS NOT ALLOWED. In general, the use of the 3/4G based map navigation is too slow, intermittent and inaccurate in the Mournes to be relied upon.
Q: What’s wrong with using a GPS smart-phone with a proper navigation app?
Aside from the competition rule above, anyone with any real experience of smart phones in mountain conditions will know that they are not to be relied upon – especially in cold or wet conditions. Phone batteries are particularly prone to suddenly dying when cold and, of course, if you drop your phone in a bog hole it’s knackered. A phone is great for use in emergencies and should be kept safely wrapped in a plastic bag in your rucksack or an inside pocket.
Q: Is there somewhere secure for me to leave my spare clothes and wallet?
There will be an area to leave travel bags which will be locked overnight. However security is not guaranteed and competitors leave valuables there at their own risk. Neither MMM nor the event centre’s owners will accept any liability for any lost or damaged belongings.