wtf details

Welcome to the details page for fearsociety's wilderness traverse of fiordland.


    • Friday before the event: Pre race meeting. Time and location TBD.

    • Sat, early: Meet at race finish line with own vehicles. Transport will be provided to bring teams to the start line.

    • Sat, time TBD: Race Start

    • Jan ?! Finish. We're not sure when you'll finish, but your cars will be there, and maybe one of our staff. If not, there will be a fancy card-board sign congratulating you and telling you how to record your finish time. We'll give you more details as the event gets closer. We hypothesize that the fastest teams will manage to complete the course in under 72 hours and the slower teams a bit longer. Probably want to take Monday off work, maybe Tuesday and Wednesday too, just in case...

Cost: $50+ pp, including a tracking device. Cost will include bus transport from finish line to start line. Camping/accommodation costs are not included. We might up the cost a bit and organize a nice pre-event meal to help support local businesses, but this would only add about $20 to the cost and we promise it'd be good. We'll let you know well ahead of time if this will be the case.

Categories: Teams of 2 minimum. We will differentiate based on standard AR rules--all male or coed.

Recommended gear: Beyond the obvious of packraft kit (including suitable pfd), each team will be expected to carry

    • a GPS with spare batteries (per person), loaded with nz maps.

    • a head torch with spare batteries (per person)

    • space blanket or equivalent bivvy sack (per person)

    • Personal locator beacon (per team)

    • suitable clothes (including spare insulating layer)

    • enough food for 48 hours

    • packraft repair kit

    • basic first aid kit (including any necessary medication)

    • fire-starting gear suitable for starting damp wood (piece of bike tube, etc)

  • Tracking device (provided by fearsociety)

Risks management: There may be no volunteer presence in remote sections of the course. Egress points will be identified during the pre-race meeting after maps are released, but these egress options may include long waits for extraction and/or walking back to civilization on more well trodden tracks.

Travel between checkpoints will be by routes which are at the discretion of the team in most circumstances, and teams must use their own judgement at all times when making decisions about route choice, river crossings, and whether to paddle or not. There will be non-insignificant portions of the race that involve off track travel. Weather conditions and water conditions can vary dramatically. Expect moving water up to class II-III.

Ultimately teams must manage their own safety along the course as if they were undertaking the effort independently, and respond to any emergency involving serious injury accordingly. A strong self-rescue ethic should be maintained by all participants.

Post race: Because of the vast differences in expected finishing times, no specific post-race program is planned, although teams can retire to a nearby camping ground which will serve as race HQ for rest, food, and to catch up with other teams.

Accommodation/Camping: The Friday night location will be announced leading up to the race. Camping fees will be the responsibility of teams and is not included in event cost.


    • Where does the course go? We can't tell you.

    • Can I/we stop half way? Maybe. Probably not. It depends on the year. Sometimes there will be potential 'egress' points along the way. By egress we don't mean places where the course will pass through a town or anything, but rather where it will link to some sort of more established track that will, if taken result in the arrival at some bastion of civilization within a few hours. Granted that bastion of civilization might simply be a gravel road that needs to be followed for another few hours to tarseal and then maybe another hour or two to a town, but hey, it's a way out. If you do manage to get mobile reception, give us a ring and we'll come shuttle you back to your vehicle once you reach a place we can get to. We'll even listen to your war stories, too. On the other hand, sometimes it's wilderness the whole way. Good thing you know what you're doing, eh?

    • Do we have to use a GPS? Nope. But you have to carry one. If you're using this event as a training mission for GodZone, great--go map and compass style. But carry the GPS juuussst in case. Being lost anywhere sucks. Being lost in fiorland sucks a little bit more.

    • Is this event good training for GodZone? As it turns out, it might be better to say that GodZone is good training for this event. Only one team that didn't have GodZone experience has ever finished a full course WTF event. And despite being around a quarter of the length of the average GZ, the finishing rate of WTF is roughly the same, with many full course GZ teams failing to finish on any given year. Go figure.