Mountain Ruck Challenge - Everything You Need To Know

This Challenge, in its simplest form, is rucking on unpaved terrain with aggressive ascents and descents.

Challenge Purpose

  • The PATHFINDER Mountain Ruck Challenge is designed to test your body, pacing and equipment on varied terrain.

Challenge Parameters

The Mountain Ruck Challenge must be completed on mountain trails.

  • Mountains are classified as a large natural elevation of the earth's surface rising abruptly from the surrounding level. If the area does not appear on a topographical map of mountain ranges, it does not qualify as a mountain.
  • A mountain is generally steeper than a hill, however many lower mountain areas are sufficiently difficult for this Challenge.

Use unpaved trails for this Challenge.

  • Gravel and worn dirt trails are acceptable.
  • Use only marked (blazed) trails for safety.

The Challenge should be done all at once.

  • Breaks for water, food, foot care and gear check are allowed and encouraged.
  • Breaks are recommended to be no longer than 15 minutes.

A weighted ruck will be worn for the entire Challenge. (See Weight Requirements.)

Challenge Distance Requirements

  • Life: this is not currently a Challenge for Life programming.
  • Forward: required distance to complete the Challenge is 8 miles
  • Endure: required distance to complete the Challenge is 10 miles
  • Advanced: required distance is to complete the Challenge is 10 miles at the prescribed weight (see below)

Challenge Weight Requirements

  • Forward and Endure: there is no stated minimum weight requirement. An appropriately challenging weight for the rosters fitness level must be in the ruck at all times.
  • Advanced: 45# ruck dry weight for body weight of 150# or more, or 30# ruck dry weight for body weight less than 150#

Challenge Time Requirements

  • There are no time requirements for this Challenge.

Challenge Restrictions

  • Ruck safely. Communicate your route and estimated times to another individual/party who can alert
  • Paved trails (concrete, asphalt, similar) should not be used for this Challenge. Gravel trails are acceptable.
  • Stairs are not an appropriate substitute for this Challenge. If stairs are the only option in your area, consider the Firefighter Challenge instead.
  • YOU MUST COMPLY WITH ALL APPLICABLE LAWS AND RESTRICTIONS wherever you choose to complete this Challenge. DO NOT TRESPASS. PATHFINDER assumes no liability whatsoever for any actions taken by a PATHFINDER roster.


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