What to pack for Ragnar / Peak to Brew relay races

So you are headed out for a running relay race! Ragnar, Peak 2 Brew, regardless get ready for a race of a different type!

Ragnar  and Peak to Brew logos

To help you prepare, here’s a suggested packing list for you and your van mates

Before you pack anything, keep in mind, that when you have as many as 6 runners in a van and a driver that does not leave much space for luggage. Don’t use a suitcase, use smaller sports bags which can be packed more creatively in the van

Running gear

For each leg of the race you want:

  • 20180811_094029Running socks
  • Shirt or tank top
  • Running bra
  • Running shorts

It’s helpful to put your running clothes for each leg into it’s own bundle or Ziploc bag, so you can quickly find what you need when you need it. The Ziploc bag can also be used to store the sweaty running clothes after you finish a leg.

For running in general you want:

  • Running shoes
  • GPS Watch
  • Visor or hat
  • Hair elastic?
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Belt to carry cell phone and/or water
  • Water bottle (to carry or to drink in the van)
  • Headlamp for night run
  • Rear light for night run
  • Reflective vest for night run (most races require an actual reflective vest, a light up LED vest may not qualify)
  • Rain gear
  • Something to keep you warm if it cools off (overnight legs it may get colder)
  • Anti-chafing supplies?
  • Gels?

Don’t forget to charge or get fresh batteries before you leave

  • Headlamp
  • GPS Watch
  • Cell Phone (if running in another country do you want to ppre-purchase a local SIM or roaming plan?)
  • Any light up accessories

Van supplies for you

  • Towel to sit on when you hop in the van after a leg
  • Sandals or other shoes to change into after your leg (if you bring sneakers, you probably want clean socks as well)
  • Phone
  • Phone charger
  • Snacks to keep you going (it’s hard to have fun if you are hungry, what is easy to pack, won’t go bad in the heat, and will keep you going if you are hungry and there is no meal in sight)
  • Your preferred electrolyte drink
  • Cash – you may end up eating group meals and splitting costs, it’s easier if you have some cash on hand
  • Jacket you can wear if it cools off

Sleeping suppliesp2bnap

  • Mat (if there is room for it in the van)
  • Sleeping bag
  • Eye mask (the places you try to sleep will have people coming and going with light appearing and disappearing)
  • Ear plugs (even the cheap foam ones are better than nothing) – the places you try to sleep will have people chatting, runners coming and going rustling sleeping bags, etc…
  • Look up how to use vibrate on your GPS or watch to use as an alarm clock
  • In a perfect world, everyone would bring a nice comfy pillow, but realistically there is not going to be enough room in the van for everyone to bring a pillow, so bring a travel pillow or use your sports bag packed with clothing as a substitute

Van supplies for the team

Co-ordinate with teammates to make sure the van is stocked for the team:

  • 20180810_144139Garbage bags
  • Window markers suitable for writing on van
  • Any other supplies for van decorating – flags, ways to attach flags, etc…
  • Baby wipes to clean off the writing on the van when the race finishes and for wiping down the occasional runner as needed
  • Noise makers to cheer on your team mates
  • Foam roller or stick to loosen up between runs
  • Basic first aid kit (Band aids, blister band aids, Benadryl (for allergic reactions), Tylenol, antibiotic cream, gauze pads, tape, tensor bandage, Tylenol or equivalent)
  • Nail clippers
  • Kleenex
  • Toilet paper (in case of unstocked port-a-potty)
  • Water container to carry water for the team
  • Febreeze to get rid of that lovely sweaty runner smell?
  • Cooler
  • Cups (useful if you are going to do water stops for your teammates)
  • GPS with maps pre-downloaded

Making the most of storage space in the van

  • If anyone on your team has a roof carrier, that may provide extra storage space. Some mini vans have roof racks built in which can take a roof carrier
  • If you rent a mini-van check to see if there is any storage in the floors

Race specific documentation

Each race has specific maps and information you need during the race. Make sure each van has their own copy!

  • Clipboard & Pen
  • Maps (DO NOT assume you will have cell coverage throughout the course!)
  • Race book
  • Safety flags?
  • Paper maps
  • Spreadsheet of predicted finish times for each leg of the race

Clean up supplies

Some of the exchanges may have shower facilities, a little clean up can make you feel more human

  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Towel for after shower

Non-Race related supplies

Are you staying in a hotel the night before or after the race? Do you want a change of clothes for the post-race celebration?

  • Change of clothes
  • Toiletries
  • PJs or whatever is appropriate depending on your sleeping arrangements (i.e. do you have a roommate?)
  • Sanitary napkins/tampons if you are unlucky with timing


  • Have fun! Yes you will get tired, yes something will go wrong, someone might get a little grumpy at some point – write it off as hunger and move on. Take pictures, chat with other teams, enjoy a shared experience, eat some junk food, celebrate with a club soda, beer or wine at the finish!


One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Bryon on August 9, 2019 at 2:24 PM

    We’re driving back south from Saranac Lake today and I’m wishing I had signed up for Peak to Brew, the people running look like they’re having a blast and the finish line is pretty close to home. I could have just run home instead of driving! Next year I’ll have to sign up with some co-workers. Thank you for this post and the information!


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