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Thread: GPS in fell races

  1. #71
    Master Travs's Avatar
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    It does say they can be carried for safety, but not used competitively.

    I have my doubts how this can be policed, but will certainly respect the wishes of the organisers.

  2. #72
    Senior Member RaceTheSweeper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travs View Post
    On this subject, I received confirmation of entry to Ennerdale this morning, and interesting to note that in CFRA races (Ennerdale, Wasdale, Scafell Pike), the use of GPS has been specifically prohibited in the race rules...
    We are totally made up about this. Well done CFRA on making this decision. Hopefully now that one of the big boys have gone down this route the rest will follow.
    Us little boys at the "Litton Christmas Cracker" intend to follow suit ;-)
    Last edited by RaceTheSweeper; 07-05-2018 at 08:33 PM.

  3. #73
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    What has been prohibited? Use for navigating or wearing to record? - I always wear and turn on my GPS, but do not use it for route finding - in fact it will not store a route except "live" in the take me back the way I have come sense, and it will point at a stored location "as the crow flies". It can be used as a compass, but it is more fuss than an actual compass.

    Unfortunately people may cheat - and when the clag is down it will make a huge difference - as will having been shown the route to the inch by an expert. Is this going to be prohibited as well?

  4. #74
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    I would imagine using to record would be ok, but i'm not the organiser... i guess any specific queries should be directed to them.

    I carried a hand-held GPS unit in my pack at the weekend, simply to record the route i took (there were a couple of sections where route choice is vital), so that i could then look at the route i took, against an OS map. when i got home.

    Found it very interesting to review, although agree with the majority view that if i had been reliant on it for navigation, it would certainly have slowed me down, as i was nearer the 'sharp end' of the race. although having now done the race twice (and this year managed to actually run vaguely in the correct direction for most of it), i'd quite happily run the course again off memory. And it was a 2.5 hour race, so if i am capable of getting round an 'AL' off memory, after 3 years of fell running, i do doubt if GPS really is going to be such a "game changer" fr those at the front end of big races, who have been racng and recceing routes for years...

  5. #75
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    Seems like a sensible approach from CFRA.
    I don't see there being any major issues with policing. On the whole, fell runners are an ethical bunch and don't have any problem pointing out anyone who is abusing the regulations. I remember one poor soul who attempted to run Kentmere horseshoe with his number pinned to his backpack shortly after the rules were tightened in this respect. He got no end of abuse and sheepishly moved his number to prevent further ridicule.
    I guess the only problem is distinguishing people using a device solely for recording and not navigation but if it is made to be seen as unethical or preferably prohibited then I would have thought the majority would self enforce it.

  6. #76
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    I cannot see how recceing a route, whether alone or with someone with local knowledge, can be compared to using a Global Positioning System to navigate that route in the heat of a race whatever the conditions.

    There are plenty of devices around that record information during an activity that can be downloaded later but do not assist in the navigation of the route.

    Anyone who enters a race which states that Navigational Skills are required should have those skills and if they have not or cannot be bothered to learn them there are plenty of fully marked trail races about.

  7. #77
    Senior Member RaceTheSweeper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Llani Boy View Post
    I cannot see how recceing a route, whether alone or with someone with local knowledge, can be compared to using a Global Positioning System to navigate that route in the heat of a race whatever the conditions.

    There are plenty of devices around that record information during an activity that can be downloaded later but do not assist in the navigation of the route.

    Anyone who enters a race which states that Navigational Skills are required should have those skills and if they have not or cannot be bothered to learn them there are plenty of fully marked trail races about.
    Spot one!

  8. #78
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    " I cannot see how recceing a route, whether alone or with someone with local knowledge, can be compared to using a Global Positioning System to navigate that route in the heat of a race whatever the conditions."

    They are clearly very different, but both can result in a tremendous advantage, particularly when the visibility is poor - having run at night in zero visibility I know how useful a route guiding GPS can be, and how we were stopped in our tracks when the battery went flat, despite being on a "well known" path.
    Culturally, recces and being shown the way by an expert will always be more accepted than a route loaded GPS, but the end results may not be that different.
    Having said that, culture is important. Unfortunately, from the cultural viewpoint, using, or "cheating" with a GPS is easy.

  9. #79
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    Every Race/event I have ever done has always been done on sight for the first time of doing it, I have done many races multiple times and of course noticed a difference in times the more often I attempt a particular race, even though I own a GPS it never occurs to me to take it to a Race or event, I would sooner carry a little more sustenance than a passenger in my kit.

    However when I look back over the events I have done the first attempt has always been the most enjoyable simply because I love poring over maps and planning the route of an unknown event, and then on the day putting my interpretation of an unknown route into practice, for me the prep is part of the pleasure of any event.

    Personally I think carrying a tracker/Locater makes more sense than a GPS no matter how competent you are with map and compass or even GPS, that way you still get to see where you went on OS maps when you get back home, plus if the tracker has a S.O.S. Locater beacon and things go pear shaped on an event for you, or even another competitor for that matter, the beacon has a far better chance of ensuring a favorable outcome than a GPS Guidance device plus it could make life a little easier for the RO.

    Yes I Know no technology is infallible but there is now`t wrong with hedging your bets
    Last edited by JohnK; 08-05-2018 at 03:41 PM.
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  10. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travs View Post
    On this subject, I received confirmation of entry to Ennerdale this morning, and interesting to note that in CFRA races (Ennerdale, Wasdale, Scafell Pike), the use of GPS has been specifically prohibited in the race rules...
    Travs, did you enter ennerdale online or by post? Just wondering if i should have received something from them. Thanks.

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