THE GREAT SOUTHERN ALPS MILER
The 2021 GSAM is a certified qualifying race for the UTMB - worth 5 points.
The official ITRA evaluation for the GSAM has awarded the following ITRA Points: 5 and Mountain points: 2
Friday 15th – Saturday 16th January 2021
Please note – competitors should be confident of completing this race in under 38.5 hours. You must have previously, successfully completed an off road/trail miler – ideally finishing in the top 2/3rds of the field. this is a full on “adventure mountain-run” and runners will need to be semi self sufficient. With multiple river crossings, an average altitude of 850m (highest point just over 1300m) and several short sections with no physical track on the ground e.g. across “the racecourse” and down “the bums rush”.
Individual: Earlybird – $286.40. General – $348.00. Late – $378.80
General entry for 2021 is now closed – late entries will be accepted until 6th Jan.
20th Dec is the cutoff for entries if you want a buckle – after this buckles can be ordered but will not be available on race day), as well as personalised number plate and other goodies in your registration bag. Whistles and Buckles in particular need to be ordered now due to christmas holiday closures, so get in now or you will miss out.
All entries close 5th Jan.
The Great Southern Alps Miler is a R18+ Open Range event – there are no age group categories.
Start time 7am
Overall: Mens – 24:27:07, Womens – 35:24:14
The GSAM aka Beardies Beat will start on Top House Road from the pylon by the bridge at Fowlers, with a short loop (5.9k) up the road and back down the pylon track on the other side of the Clarence (might as well get your feet wet from the getgo).
Then starting an immediate gradual climb all the way to the top of Fowlers Pass (9.9km). From the top of Fowlers there is a sharp drop following a zigzag track down into a tributary of the Stanley River. Following the creek down runners will soon cross the Stanley for the first of 11 times! At around the 17 km mark runners will follow the hill line around to the right heading toward Lake Guyon and the Lake Guyon aid station (20.1km).
From the head of the lake runners follow the 4×4 track around the lake and across the outlet stream and down into the Waiau Valley and turn right to head up the St James Cycleway track and onto the 4×4 track to the historic rabbit control fence (30.86km) the fence starts at the river and goes all the way out to Kaikoura and was dug in by hand!
From the fence the course follows old 4×4 and stock tracks up the Waiau valley, picking up the Te Aroha Trail up to the Caroline Bivy (38.99km). From the bivy runners turn back down the trail following it down to the 4×4 track at the Waiau crossing (48.72km).
Continuing down the 4×4 track until a right hand deviation takes the course around into the Ada valley. The course follows a mix of 4×4 and stock trails right upto and along the foot of the might and majestic Faerie Queen before joing the St James walkway (65.98km) back down the valley to the Christopher walkway hut (69.39km). From the hut, the course follows the 4×4 track (with a brief detour under Fangorn Matagouri forest) down to the Henry aid station (78.18km)
From the aid station the course heads upto the walkway track and follows a mix of walkway and 4×4 trail up the Henry to the new Anne hut in the middle of the Irishman Flat (84.18km). Turning at the hut runners return back down to the Henry aid station via another mix of walkway, 4×4 and stock trails and the Henry swingbridge.
From the Aid station, the course heads over to and across the Henry river, following the track up onto the ZigZag track. Here runners pick up the St James Cycleway, following the left fork back down toward the new swing bridge (92.64km). From here runners follow the cycleway back up the Waiau over the Downs past Muddy Lake (96.13km) and back into Lake Guyon where they pick up the Stampede course again, and the Lake Guyon Aid Station (106.59km).
NB AT THIS POINT YOU MAY BE ASSESED BY THE MEDIC BEFORE BEING ALLOWED TO CONTINUE!
HEADLIGHTS WILL BE COMPULSORY FROM THIS POINT!
COMPETITORS WHO HAVE ANY DOUBT ABOUT THEIR ABILITY TO CONTINUE, SHOULD STOP HERE!
Continuing down the Stanley River for another 12 – 15km runners will experience several more river crossings and a couple of minor climbs/descents before a big climb out of the Stanley up onto “The Racecourse” (122km), after traversing “The Racecourse” runners will deviate from the 50km Stampede and veer right to follow the horse track out onto the Edwards 4×4 track and Charlies Saddle aid station (126.5km).
From here runners will follow the 4×4 track up the Edwards valley (crossing the river 3 times) to the Bull Gully aid station (136.86km). Turning right, the course leaves the 4×4 track and heads up Bull Gully/Waterfall creek and a short-sharp climb up into Peter’s Valley and onto the wheelchair track down to the finish zone and into the transition area (143.96km) to start the multisport run lap.
NB You must start this loop before 7:30pm with course closure at 10pm
Leaving the transition zone, runners will travel around below the St James Homestead to cross the Clarence River, from here they will run up the river valley following the old transmission tower access tracks before re crossing the Clarence and onto to the Edwards 4×4 track back to Bull Gully (153.82km) and back onto the wheelchail track back to the finish!
When we say Come run with the wild things we mean it – there is every chance of seeing Chamois, red deer, wild pigs and many different bird species including if you’re really lucky Kea and falcons.
Compulsory Spot GPS trackers are INCLUDED in your entry fee – These are live trackers so all your mates can watch your progress online at home – https://trackme.kiwi/eventgroup/54/stjameshanmer
Competitors can expect very hot conditions – be prepared and stay adequately hydrated. There will be marshal stations at various points (including three major stations on the MTB stage, with EM’s goodies, R-Line, water, banana’s, sunscreen & crampstop) but this is remote country so all competitors will need to be self-sufficient – all rivers & creeks should be ok to drink from directly. You will come through transition twice on the run.
Minimum Gear Requirements
Headlights will be compulsory from the Lake Guyon Aid Station (106km mark) – competitors should determine at which aid point they wish to have their lights available, here or at the Henry aid station (78km/89km marks).
All competitors will be required to carry a minimum amount of safety/emergency gear – it can go from hot sun to heavy snow in a matter of hours even in the height of summer. By preference race organisers require all riders to use hydration packs and not water bottles – these are too often lost/dropped from bikes and left on the track. As with any littering any competitor caught dropping rubbish will be intantly disqualified.
Optional gear/bag drops can be made to the main aid stations at Lake Guyon, Henry or Charlies Saddle – bags must be dropped off prior to the start and must be pre-booked via email, with The Yeti.
All Competitors must attend the race briefing
Anyone who is unable to meet these conditions should notify The Yeti (firstname.lastname@example.org) to make other arrangements.
Aid stations will be located at the head of Lake Guyon (20km), Rabbit fence – bag drop only (31km), Waiau Crossing (49km), Christopher Walkway hut – bag drop only (69km), Henry Aid station (78km/89km), Lake Guyon (106km), Charlies Saddle aid station (126km), Bull Gully (137km), transition zone (144km) and Bull Gully (154km).
Optional gear/bag drops (by prior arrangement with The Yeti) can be made to any of the points above (except Lake Guyon 20km mark) – bags must be dropped off prior to race briefing ON FRIDAY.
Choose Your Challenge
Confirmed Entries & Results
Elena Ellis 2019 35:24:14
Michael Stuart 2019 21:50:00