Aid Station Captains Section – Captains Please Read
Aid station captains (and any other aid station workers that would like to take the time), please find some time to review the content of this page at your convenience, it will likely take you around 10 minutes to get through. Please contact us with any questions. Thank you for your time and dedication.
The earlier we have volunteer commitments the better. It may seem redundant to have to sign up on the website each year but things change for people and we want the most current / up to date information on each one of our volunteers, this helps us do the best job we can, so you can do the best job you can! Please feel free to recruit your own team, your friends etc. – this can really give an aid station some personality and lead to an outstanding experience for the runners and volunteers – many of our aid stations have been staffed by the same groups for years now!
Aid Station Captains:
Split Rock – Rick Berg
Beaver Bay – Jim Stocco
Silver Bay – Curt King
Tettegouche – Isabel Boike / Performance Running Gym
County Road 6 – Jamison Swift
Finalnd – Amy Clark / Performance Running Gym
Sonju Lake RD – Bonnie Riley / & SHTA Friends
Crosby-Maintou – Jake Hegge / Trail Transformation
Sugarloaf – Tommy Byrne / Bigger Than The Trail
Cramer Road – Brian Poepple & Tara Rourke
Temperance River – Bekah Metzdorf / Mill City Running
Sawbill – Dale Immerfall
Oberg – Kurt Decker / Twin Cities Running Company
Many head these aid stations up with a spouse / partner(s), but for clarity we are naming one captain here (besides Cramer Road).
YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES AS AID STATION CAPTAIN:
During the busy times / when you are slammed you may be hands on helping runners, filling water bottles etc. BUT THE PRIMARY JOB YOU ARE BEING ASKED TO DO is to manage your aid station and your aid station volunteers – this includes making sure long duration volunteers are getting some rest, keeping an eye on volunteer / spectator parking (making sure it is safe / people are parking in the designated places or on one side of the road only), making sure there are volunteers safely helping at the road crossings, making sure volunteers and crews are staying out of the road, making sure that spectators and crew are not inhibiting runners without crew from getting what they need (crowding the aid station), working with the HAM Radio operators and generally overseeing the big picture at your aid station – in essence it is a management position, let your helpers do the smaller (albeit very important tasks). You in essence are the race director surrogate at your aid station.
Early Season Communication:
Communication is one of the major keys to putting on a great event, please stay in touch with us and we will do the same. Note that volunteer assignments are usually not made until a few weeks before the race as it usually takes that long to get everyone signed up, please trust that things will be organized and the plan will come together quickly – whenever in doubt, email or call the race director.
Website is Your Resource:
As you have time, please familiarize yourself with the content of the website and get to know the event inside and out (it is a complex event with many things happening) – this helps to make you a great resource for other volunteers, runners and spectators.
Connect with your volunteers prior to race weekend:
Aid station captains, we ask that you reach out directly to the volunteers at your aid station, we will provide you with the email addresses – try to do this no later than one week of the race and please try to get some “buy-in” / participation on providing extra hot food items and extra touches to the aid station – most people will be thrilled to contribute in this way.
If after reviewing the Volunteer Assignments Page you think you are understaffed over any period of time, please let us know and we will see what we can do to provide more volunteers – if you would like to recruit for those gaps, that would be great as well, as always, if you do, have your volunteers sign up on the website via the Volunteer Sign-Up Form but realize that we typically close volunteer registration 1 week prior to the race as it is not possible at that point to effectively take on, assign and communicate with new volunteers.
To our knowledge nobody working an aid station has ever been questioned by an authority but if it should ever happen know that this event is permitted through the US Forest Service, Minnesota DNR, Superior Hiking Trail Association, Lake County and Cook County. Should anyone every approach you during the race or bring anything into question please make use of the HAM Radio Operators to get in touch with the Race Director – John Storkamp.
Aid Station Open Times:
We have a guide for expected aid station open times HERE – it is always encouraged to arrive extra early so we don’t get caught off guard by a super fast runner, we set these times based off of historical data but as they say “records were meant to fall”. We implemented a live runner tracking on the website in 2014 and has been a huge success / very helpful for tracking the race – you should (when / if you are able to get Internet) be able to hop on the website and see who is through what aid stations at what time. You may be able to use this 5 hours prior to heading out to your aid station to gain some insight as to when you think the first runner might be coming through and adjust accordingly. One note for the overnight aid stations – it is always easier setting these aid stations up in the daylight.
Send us a text:
If possible, please send us a text when you are on your way / en’route to your aid station to start setting it up / open it up (before you lose service as you get back into the deep woods) or once you arrive at your aid station if you get cell coverage there (most aid stations do not)
Food and Supplies:
A comprehensive list of what we provide at the aid stations can be found HERE. Not all food items will be in one bin so please make sure you look through each of your bins as things get spread out to help with the weight of the bins. Major supplies will be delivered hours in advance of the listed open time of each aid station – runners drop bags along with generators (if we are providing them for your aid station) and propane for aid stations with stoves (Tettegouche and later) will be dropped off once you have arrived at the aid stations.
Volunteers should hand-sanitize frequently and disinfect their work / volunteer areas frequently – we will provide supplies. We will provide non-latex gloves.
Please identify whether or not you think you are running low on food or water well before you run out – if need be / if ever in doubt send someone from your aid station to run for water – if you are unsure of where to go near your aid station please ask. Generally we will be able to resupply you but realize it can take a long time to get to you so keep an eye on food, water and supplies and call well in advance of it becoming and emergency (use the HAM Radio operators for this).
Coke, Ginger Ale and Ice:
We procure, haul and distribute 100’s of cans / or bottles of Coke and Ginger Ale to the race. We also provide a little bit of ice for the aid stations. We only have so much capacity to pack and deploy so many supplies. One thing you can do is to pack an extra cooler with extra ice and grab a few two liters of Coke and Ginger Ale in case your aid station runs low / out. We try to get back to you with resupply if you are running low, but these are continually items that are challenging to get just right.
Generators will be provided for the following aid stations, Tettegouche and earlier Aid Stations will not have a need for generators. Please let me know if you are at an aid station after Tettegouche and don’t have one lined up or are not listed below. We will provide an extension cord, power strip and minimal lighting – if you want additional lighting, appliances etc. please feel free to procure what you would like and bring it. *FINLAND has power outlets so no generator needed, Crosby and Temperance have their own and no generators at Sawbill or Oberg. If anyone from any of the listed aid stations has a generator they can bring let us know – we can always use more!
- Sugarloaf Road
- Cramer Road
Other Key Volunteers to Be Aware Of:
- Scott Radke and Kevin Lynch – Main Supply in 26′ Ryder Truck
- Tyson Anderson – Roving Supply / Sprinter Van (drop bags, generators, fuel, resupply)
- Robbie Skantz – Roving Supply / Pickup Truck
- Kit Grayson – Roving Supply, SAG, Floaters
- Steph Hoff – Graveyard shift roving supply / pickup truck
- Chalayne Palmgren roving medical
- Photographers / media folks, covering the race on the media / social media end and taking pictures and video etc.
* If you need to get in contact with any of these individuals during the race please use the HAM Radio Operators to do so.
Extra Hot Food Item(s): (Tettegouche On)
We ask that each aid station captain coordinates at least one additional hot food item for their aid station in addition to the Soup we provide. It is just not practical for us to plan and provide all of the items to execute this and the truth is, you all can do it better than we can. We will provide one Coleman stove and 20LB tank of propane, many aid station captains bring an extra stove and propane. Plan and bring it yourself or work with other volunteers to plan a menu – if you need compensation for items purchased please reach out to us after the race and we will take care of it. *** Please remit / give us an idea of what you are planning if you could.
Depending on fire restrictions, some of the overnight aid stations like to have a campfire for volunteers and runners to warm up at. Should an aid station like to do this, they will need to bring / provide their own portable, freestanding firepit. We / the race organization will provide firewood – please let us know if you are planning on having a fire so we can procure wood for you.
- You are encouraged to make your aid station your own / make it festive and make it fun for runners (music, cowbells, Christmas lights etc!) – some more great ideas are as follows…
- Bring a set of walkie talkies to communicate runners numbers / names in advance so they can be greeted by name when they arrive (plus most runners names are printed on the front of their bibs.)
- As soon as a runner enters an aid station immediately locate their drop bag and bring it to them
- Fill water bottles and hydration packs out of pitchers, don’t make them wait for you to fill it out of a little spout
- Sky is the limit, be creative and be the aid station that runners talk about after the race!
While a few of the aid stations provide many extras and cover the costs as part of a “sponsorship”, several others do not. If you have extra food items / touches that you would like to add to the aid station, we welcome and encourage it, please just keep your receipts and we will reimburse you after the race (we can do before if needed as well).
Helping Runners – Food, Water & Drop Bags and More:
- Ask runners to open and hold out their hydration packs, water bottles or soft-flasks so you can fill out of the provided pitchers.
- Use provided Clorox wipes to wipe down the aid station and provided hand-sanitizer to sanitize frequently
- Organize numerically then help runners find their drop bags when they arrive
- Hand runners pre-packaged food items
- When not in use, keep food covered, cold/hot, protected etc.
- When runners are ready to leave the aid station and continue running – help to ensure that the runner is heading the right way on the trail when they leave.
- Generally just be of assistance to the runners and offer encouragement.
Road Crossings, Parking and Traffic Control – IMPORTANT:
For aid stations with road crossings and parking issues aid station captains will assign and rotate volunteers in and out of these positions throughout the day – (you can poll your general volunteers on race day) if this is something you have experience with, think you would be good at, or enjoy doing, please let your aid station captain know. This is one of the most critical volunteer positions we have as it is the interfacing between runners and roads / drivers and spectators and crews and roads that constitute the most dangerous aspect of the entire event. That said, it is not everyone’s favorite position, so if everyone takes a turn, it spreads the load out nicely. We are making a huge push again this year to see to it that spectators and crews are not hanging out on / standing or sitting on roads – please help us! Remember that at road crossings we do not stop cars to let runners pass, we stop runners and let them pass when there is no traffic. You will want to review the page HERE https://www.superiorfalltrailrace.com/wp-content/uploads/Superior-Fall-Trail-Race-Crew-and-Spectator-Guide-8-25-22-250PM-CST.pdf that applies to your aid station – the info-graphics show exactly where course marshals are required (at all times) for your aid station.
If there is not a parking lot at / near your aid station and parking is to be done on the side of the road, our goal is to park all cars on one side of the road only, not both sides. A dedicated volunteer(s) should be allocated to manage this at Temperance, Sawbill and Oberg and at a minimum help keep an eye on this at earlier aid stations. THIS guide is what is provided to crew / spectators and the page covering your aid station is a helpful resource for you as well https://www.superiorfalltrailrace.com/wp-content/uploads/Superior-Fall-Trail-Race-Crew-Directions-V1-Revised-8-27-17-708PM.pdf
If your cell phone works at your aid station all the better, but the majority of race related communication should be handled through the HAM Radio operators located at your aid station, should you need anything please make use of the HAMs.
Identifying Runners by Distance:
All runners should have their bib number displayed on the front of their body / clearly visible at all times. We have races of three distances over the weekend, 100, 50 & 26.2 miles.
- 100 mile runners have red numbers with the range 1-299
- 50 Mile runners have blue numbers with the range 500-699
- 26.2 Mile runners have green numbers with the range 2600+
The HAM Radio Operators will generally be handling runner tracking but at some of the busier aid stations will take a hand if you have plenty of helpers, please communicate with and offer this to your HAM Radio Operators. A couple of aid stations may not have HAMS right away or HAMS could be resting, if this is the case, please jot down bib numbers and time in / out until HAMS come on-line. Thank you.
ALL DNFs MUST BE REPORTED TO THE HAM RADIO OPERATORS SO THEY CAN CALL IT IN. We are no longer going to worry about getting runners bibs or timing chips but we need to make sure we record their number – tip, taking a picture of the bibs of DNF’s is helpful in case you get distracted from the time you are told of a DNF and have a chance to write it down or tell a HAM Radio Operator.
It is always good practice to poll the volunteers at your aid station to see if you have anyone with medical training. There may not always be a volunteer with medical training working at your aid station. In the event of a medical emergency a volunteer with medical training may be able to help / advise until emergency services arrive. In the event of an emergency if there are no volunteers with medical training a public announcement can be made “is there anyone here with medical training”.
Our volunteers with medical training are operating as good-samaritans / via the hippocratic oath and are under no formal medical direction from the race. Lake and Cook counties are the authorities having jurisdiction. Volunteers with medical training are generally there to volunteer in other non-medical capacities – we do not ask or expect a lot of intervention from them. Volunteers with medical training may go ahead and help with anything that is very minor (bumps and bruise kind of stuff) while anything that they are not comfortable addressing and certainly anything major will be called into emergency services by our HAM / Amateur Radio Operators with them to assist / triage until emergency services arrive on scene.
We typically have a Lake County ALS crew staffed at the race finish all day on Saturday.
*FIRST AID KITS – Your aid station does have a basic first aid kit in addition to mylar blankets, limited other blanket and garbage bag to help in the event of hypothermia.
AHJs Authorities Having Jurisdiction:
Medical & Emergencies:
Emergencies dial 911.
– Two Harbors / Lake County
For use from Two Harbors, Gooseberry Falls (Race Start) to Cramer Road Aid Station
Lakeview Memorial Hospital
325 11th Avenue
Two Harbors, MN 55616-1360
(218) 834-7300 Lake County Sheriffs Office
Lake County Law Enforcement Center
613 Third Avenue
Two Harbors, MN 55616
– Grand Marais / Cook County
For use from Temperance River Aid Station to Lutsen / Caribou Highlands (Race Finish)
Cook County North Shore Hospital and Care Center
515 5th Ave West
Grand Marais MN 55604
218-387-3040 Cook County Sheriffs Office
Cook County Law Enforcement Center
143 Gunflint Trl
Grand Marais, MN 55604
Cutoffs and DNFs:
Please be aware of what the cutoff is at your aid station but as always, cutoffs will be enforced and runners that do not make the cutoff will be pulled by someone from the Sweeping Team, likely Matt Long, Paul Hasse, Bill Sikorski, Todd Rowe, Donald Clark; OR someone from the sweeping team may communicate with you to cutoff / pull runners at the appointed time should they need to move on up the course. Cutoffs are published on the “race-info pages” of the website.
Closing Down the Aid Station:
- When it is time to close down the aid station please pack all salvageable food items into one bin so it can be re-distributed
- Do not dump out water jugs unless instructed to do so, water can be re-distributed to later aid stations
- Please put all dirty dishes into one bin, not dispersed throughout
- Please take down your tents and pack / consolidate all materials so it is easier to load
- Please stay and help load truck if possible / if they are there before you are ready to leave.
Depending on where your aid station is located, there may not be any restroom facilities so runners and volunteers will have to make use of the woods – if this is completely foreign to you, this is a good place to start HERE
Personal Items and Rest:
Feel free to eat any of the food at the aid stations and bring extra food for yourself that you like. Send someone to run for food for your group if you want. Be sure to bring personal items such as a chair, rain-gear, warm clothes, bug spray etc., items to keep yourself comfortable out there and encourage your volunteer mates to do the same. Take turns taking rests and breaks and at the later / long duration aid station, sleep – set up a tent or a vehicle to sleep in at the aid station, take care of yourselves!.
COMMUNAL LODGING IN THE COVID / POST-COVID ERA: We have always tried to provide communal lodging for our volunteers in need, so that volunteering would not be costly or prohibitive for anyone. In the Covid / Post-Covid era we are trying to keep units from being too crowded. As a result, we have far less capacity than years past as we can only find and afford so much lodging. We are asking that wherever possible, volunteers who are not working 3 or 4 days (those volunteers will be given priority for obvious reasons) look for their own arrangements. If you like camping, there are many affordable options in the area, if you have friends or family who are running, perhaps you could share some space. See what you can do. Ultimately we will do everything in our power to make sure you have a place to crash if you need it, but we want to be upfront about the concerns, considerations and limitations. Please do not let lodging issues be a reason that you do not come and volunteer, if you need lodging, sign up.
Communal lodging for Aid Station Volunteers is available at Caribou Highlands Townhomes (Lutsen / race finish / race headquarters) on Wednesday night for those on the trail marking crew and Thursday, Friday and Saturday night for other volunteers. Unit numbers will be available the week of the race and we will email those to you. HERE is a map detailing where the townhome units are at Caribou Highlands.
A few reminders about lodging:
- This is communal lodging meaning you will likely share a bunk room, living room floor, nook or cranny with others.
- We ask that you bring a sleeping bag, sleeping pad and pillow as there may only be floor space available when you are needing to sleep.
- Lodging is in a nice, modern clean townhomes near the finish area at Caribou Highlands and there are cooking facilities and showers available.
- Please clean up after yourself and have your own towel and toiletries if you are going to take shower.
- There will be a list of room assignments taped to the front door of every unit all weekend long. Be sure to check the sheet as soon as you arrive / before going to your room as there may have been last minute changes.
- Do not lock the door to the unit, if the door is locked there will be a key under the front door mat, do not take / remove this key – leave it there otherwise people coming in after a volunteer shift could be locked out.
- Do not leave valuables in the townhome since we will not be locking it.
- UNLESS TOLD OTHERWISE, YOU DO NOT NEED TO CHECK IN AT / WITH THE FRONT DESK AT CARIBOU HIGHLANDS WHEN YOU ARRIVE – YOU CAN JUST GO STRAIGHT TO YOUR UNIT.
T-shirts (hats, beanies – whatever the current years giveaway) for volunteers along with a list of what sizes they asked for when they signed up to volunteer in case they cannot recall will be sent out to your aid station along with the other supplies. If it is a shirt / sized item and any of your volunteers decide they want another size, please do not give them one from this bin (since that would make it so another volunteer would not get their preferred size) rather, have them come to the race finish or if they cannot, email us after the race. There are also a couple of extra shirts in case you get some additional volunteers assigned to your aid station between the time we packed and loaded these bins (about a week before the race) and the time the race happens. Please remember to get the giveaway out to volunteers or assign another volunteer to get the shirts out so we do not have to mail them after the race! Thank you!
Come See Us:
On Saturday, after your shift is done please come to Caribou Highlands and take in the atmosphere, watch runners finish and have some food with us, we will be serving Chili.
Your Homework Before the Race – If you would be so kind…: (We will email you a “survey” to get the answers to these questions).
- Please let us know what extra type of food items you are planning – if you have anything vegetarian or vegan you will have a few runner friends for life!
- County 6 and later aid stations, please let us know if you are brining a fire-pit / plan or hope to have a fire so we can bring wood.
- Please let us know what time you plan on arriving at your aid station.
- Please shoot us a text on your way to or once you arrive at your aid station (the later only if you know you have cell service at your aid station) this will help us to verify that there is someone there to get the aid station open.
- Please print off any information you think you will need during the race