FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS - (2017 - may be outdated)

What is new in 2017?

Due to popular demand, the Subaru Duathlon now has teams! You now have the option to race the Paddle-bike-Paddle format with a partner in a canoe. Suntrail Course and Subaru Duathlon both start at 10am so it's sure to be a close finish between racers. There is approximately 300m of running involved in the Subaru duathlon to connect the course. We are also on the verge of announcing an update to our racecourses, check HERE to see if it's been announced.

What do I win?

The 2016 Buff® Course top solo Male and top solo Female BOTH won a round-trip airfare (!) to Whitehorse, Yukon courtesy of Air North, Yukon's Airline. This year we expect similar prizing. Visit and for full details on where they fly from! The top Buff® Long Course tandem team of 2 across the finish line also received a round-trip for two bonus prize courtesy of VIA Rail, anywhere along the Windsor to Quebec corridor. We also have a legacy of handing out totally awesome prizes provided by our generous race partners, and our winners medals are also held in high regard! CHECK THIS OUT!

NEW FOR 2017: As a RANDOM door prize for racers (except kids race) TWO (2) Devinci Mountain Bikes will be given away, one to a male racer and one to a female! These prizes are donated by Bikeface Cycling in Owen Sound with thanks to Devinci! Ballots will be completed at racer check-in, and the names will be drawn at the awards ceremony on raceday Saturday August 12th. Racers must be present at the draw, or still on the course, to win.

Where's the racecourse?

The Subaru BPMR committee is hard at work finalizing this year's course, and are expecting to announce some new terrain shortly. Check HERE to see if it's been announced. In 2017, all courses will again be based out of, and finish in, Wiarton's Bluewater Park. Buff® Long Course racers are transported to the start by bus, and the Suntrail Course, Subaru Duathlon, Run Duathlon and Summer House Park Kids Race start and finish in Bluewater Park.

Something's changed... can I get a refund?

Because of the logistical requirements of organizing the event, we cannot offer any refunds at any time. We unfortunately cannot downgrade or updgrade anyone either due to the 2017 event being sold out. If you would like to see if there's someone wanting to register that may have missed out, feel free to post on our Facebook page and if given sufficient notice, the organizers will likely accommodate a transfer of name. If this happens, or if there is any name change to a registration, a one-time admin fee of $20 will be apply, payable by e-transfer or cash/cheque.

I swore I lost something at the Subaru BPMR! Have you seen it?

Please contact us here if you lost an item at a previous race.

How do teams work?

The team event always works a bit differently in the shorter courses than it does in the Buff® Long Course. See below:

How does the Buff® Long Course Relay work?

The Buff® Long Course Course has 5 stages: two are mtb, two are run and one is solo kayak. A relay team will be in charge of their own transportation with the exception of the person starting the race, who will be dropped off at the start. Teams can range from 2p to 5p, but each person must do at least one stage. They can hand-off wherever they’d like, and as often as they’d like, as long as the handoff is at a designated transition (T1, T2, T3, or T4). They must check in with the transition official at each transition. With these rules, they may divide the Buff Long Course as they please.

How does the Buff® Long Course Tandem Team work?

A tandem team of 2 will compete together on the same Course as the solo Buff® Long Course racers. Tandem teammates bike together (on separate bikes), run together, and compete in the same kayak to the finish line.

How do the Suntrail Course & Subaru Duathlon Teams work?

The Suntrail Course & Subaru Duathlon have 3 stages. A team of 2 will compete in the same canoe for the first leg, then bike together (on separate bikes) for the second leg, and then either run together (Suntrail Course) or paddle back in the canoe (Subaru Duathlon) on the final leg. All transportation of person and equipment will be provided by volunteers, with the exception of getting your canoe to the starting line from your car or the arena. If it's a close finish, your team time will be recorded when the last of the teammates arrives over the finish line. Team members must stay a maximum of 10m from each other at all times. In the Suntrail Course Canoe Team category, racers age 11-13 may compete if accompanied by an adult.

NEW: How Long is the Buff Long Course?

In the past, it's been between 100 and 107km long and usually takes 8-12 hours to complete. It can differ in distance every year because the organizers' ultimate goal is to build a unique, spectacular course, not necessarily to stick to a round number. If that's just too much racing, be sure to check out the equally spectacular, more achievable Suntrail Course (2-3h to complete) or do the Buff Long Course with a buddy or two by racing relay. Or lend a helping hand by volunteering and get the best spectator seating in town... plus volunteer perks! There’s also the Summer House Park Kids Adventure Race, fun activities at the finish line in Wiarton's Bluewater Park, and lots of fun all around the Bruce Peninsula during race weekend.

I don’t own a boat, is this race for me?

We had a fleet of rental kayaks and canoes courtesy of the great people at Suntrail in Hepworth as well as Explorer's Tread in Lions Head, but they went quickly. All race rentals are picked up at Friday check-in (or Saturday morning for Suntrail Course/duathlons) at Wiarton Arena and dropped off at your last transition area... exactly when you're done using them. All other rental info is on this website under "rental gear". In future, register real early and select a rental during online registration. IMPORTANT: Registration refunds will not be provided on the basis that the organizers cannot confirm your boat reservation.

Note: All Suntrail Course & Buff® Long Course participants have to have some paddling experience in advance of the race, and have to sign an affidavit of skills. Racers signed up to Run Duathlon, of course, do not!

I don’t have a MTB, is this race for me?

Our Mountain Bike rentals are now sold out. Racers were able to request one during online registration. Registration refunds will not be provided on the basis that the organizers cannot confirm your bike. Kids Race participants need to bring a suitably-sized bicycle.

Is it necessary to ride a Mountain bike?

Pretty much! All courses include a significant portion of trail riding, so you will want to bring your mountain bike, preferably with suspension although not mandatory. Considerations include very rocky trails, mud, and steep, uneven descents. Access points are often quite far away if there's a breakdown. We strongly discourage using any bicycle with thin tires. IMPORTANT NOTE: Road bikes and Cyclocross bikes are NOT allowed on the Buff® Long Course, and not recommended for Suntrail Course, Subaru Duathlon & Run Duathlon.

How environmentally-friendly is this exactly?

We recognize the privilege of hosting an event within the Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Preserve and take the responsibility very seriously. We are taking several initiatives to minimize environmental impacts including: consolidating transportation wherever possible, making use of existing infrastructure. This event will make every attempt to be both low-waste and low-impact.

How much does it cost?

The Subaru BPMR proceeds directly benefit the non-profit Peninsula Adventure Sports Association, supporting outdoor sport infrastructure on the Bruce Peninsula. Signing up early has its benefits, so if you haven't done so, decide soon and then use it as motivation to get out training! Full Subaru BPMR Pricing is HERE. The Summer House Park Kids Race takes place concurrent with the Subaru BPMR and is $20 per child, a great value with the welcome gift and medal they receive. All Kids Race monies benefit the Bruce Peninsula Health Services Foundation.

I’m from outside of Canada, is this race for me?

Yep! We just ask that non-Canadians purchase Emergency Medical Travel Insurance before heading up to the event.

What's Adventure Racing Ontario?

The Subaru BPMR is a qualifying race for a province-wide adventure racing series. Teams in the Buff® Long Course Tandem and Buff® Long Course Relay Categories qualify for a maximium of 50 points at the event, so first place Subaru BPMR Buff® Long Course Tandem will receive 50 points, Second place Buff® Long Course Tandem will receive 49 points, and so on. All Subaru BPMR Tandem Teams who finish will rank higher than Relay Teams. More info & full series rules can be found at

How Do I Get Around?

The organizers will provide transportation for Buff® Long Course solo & tandem racers and their gear. For relay teams, it's "self-supported" which means the person(s) not racing are responsible for transportation throughout the course at all times, with the exception of transportation to the start line which can be accommodated. Regional maps will be available at the race, with the transitions marked. The Suntrail Course will start and finish in an area adjacent to racer check-in. Bikes & bags will be transported to any off-site TA's for all Suntrail Course, Run Duathlon & Subaru Duathlon racers (so that they're exactly where you need them) but these racers will need to get their boats from the parking lot to the starting line.

Where are the transitions?

Sorry, but exact locations are under lock & key until race weekend! We do this because we use a lot of private property on the race course. Are you coming to train? If so, just run on the public Bruce Trail. If you're biking make sure you have permission from landowners, or visit the Bruce County Mountain Bike Adventure Park at Abermarle for a taste of the terrain.

What happens if I get lost?

The course will be well-marked and signed to minimize the risk of getting lost. If you are lost on a trail, retrace your steps to the last junction. If you still cannot find your way, blow your whistle three times and wait for a response. As a last resort, use your fully charged cell phone and the Chief Safety Officer phone number that will be provided to you at registration/gear check. There will also be volunteer “sweepers” throughout the Course. Area maps with the marked transition areas will be provided.

What if it gets dark and I’m not finished?

The organizers will make sure this doesn’t happen. For safety reasons, we are required to have time cut-offs at specific points along the course. Cut-off times are strictly adhered to, and will ensure that racers are off the course by nightfall.

Is the trail marked?

The trail will be marked with the exception of any paddling stages. Regional maps will be provided and safety boats will be on hand to assist with open water navigation.

What accommodations are there for persons with a disability?

The race Course involves highly variable terrain and water sports. Persons with a disability that limits their ability either to cycle, traverse uneven terrain on foot, or paddle in open water are encouraged to consider the relay. Those who have difficulty running on trail can also compete in the paddle-bike-paddle Subaru Duathlon where there is under 300m of running to connect the course, all on even ground.

What happens if I capsize?

Grab your paddle, and place it in your boat. Then grab your boat. For the most part the paddling courses follow the shoreline, however safety boats will be available to assist in getting you back into your boat.

What’s the Kids Race?

The SUMMER HOUSE PARK Kids Adventure Race is a fun event run entirely within Bluewater Park, benefiting Grey Bruce Health Services Foundation. It is timed as best as possible to allow you to finish the Suntrail Course or duathlon and cheer on your kids. If you absolutely rock the Buff Long course with a good time, you may arrive in time as well. Specific details are HERE

Can I paddle a SUP/rowboat or a tandem kayak in Suntrail Course?

On the Suntrail Course & Subaru Duathlon, only canoes qualify for prizing in the team category & only solo kayaks or surfskis qualify for prizing in the solo categories. If you plan on paddling anything other than a solo kayak, surfski or canoe (Suntrail course/Subaru Duathlon) or if you plan on using an outrigger in any discipline, you'll need to email us in advance & you will likely have to transport it yourself.

What do I pack in my "Suntrail Course/Duathlon" Transition Bag?

All Transition Bags have a size limit: it MAY NOT exceed 60L of capacity. In the Suntrail Course and either duathlon, you'll be accessing your transition bag twice, both times off-site from the start/finish. You'll need to pack that bag with your bike gear and run gear, and have enough room to stow some of your paddling gear (not your paddle or PFD, they will be tagged separately) and bike gear combined. At registration, your bike helmet, PFD, and paddle(s) which will receive their own tag with your race number. If you have registered for the Run Duathlon you will obviously only want bike gear in your transition bag because you'll have started the race wearing your running gear. All bags & gear will come back to the Wiarton Arena by the end of the day.

What if the water’s unsafe?

In all courses, an alternate route has been developed and will be prepared in the event that the race Safety Officer determines that Georgian Bay conditions are or are expected to become unsafe for paddling. Be prepared for a slight delay if this happens.

What do I pack in my "Buff® Long Course" Transition Bags?

All Transition Bags have a size limit: it MAY NOT exceed 60L of capacity. When you check-in Bag 'A' will contain your biking gear. When you finish the paddle you take your bike gear out and put your paddle gear in the bag. So make sure its the appropriate size for a lifejacket etc. If possible, the bag goes back in your boat. If its a rental, don't put the rental items in your bag. Just put the rental stuff in the hatch. This bag goes straight back to the arena.

When you check-in Bag 'B' will contain your running gear. At the end of the first bike ride you take your running gear out, run a loop, and put your run gear back in the bag. It gets moved to the second run. When you finish your second bike ride you take your run gear out of the bag, put your bike gear in the bag, and run to the finish- so make sure you can put your helmet and bike shoes in the bag. All bags & gear will come back to the Wiarton Arena by the end of the day.

Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information found within this website. No warranty, expressed or written, is made regarding the content of this site. GriggSport Strategies, Peninsula Adventure Sports Association, the volunteers who assist, and the partners who provide support will not be held liable for mistakes, typographical errors, omissions, or other errors which may render some information inaccurate. Information and policies found within this site are subject to change without notice. Please refresh your screen while visiting this website as updates are made regularly.