Competition rules

Bokami Západných Tatier is a three-day ski-mountaneering race in Western Tatras mountains in Tatras.
The track of the race follows marked track which includes various ascents and descents either on skis, on foot or with the help of mountaineering equipment.
Each race stage is difficult and requires a great knowledge of movement and orientation in the mountain terrain as well as climbing techniques in both, winter and summer conditions.
Each contestant must be in good physical shape and have all the necessary equipment to take part on this race.


  • Men-teams (18-39 years of age)
  • Women-teams (over 18 years of age)
  • Veteran-teams (over 40 years of age)

Conditions for participating on this race are:
-Only racers who turned 18 at the first day of the race, the latest, are allowed to compete.
-In the veteran category, only a team, in which each member turned 40 at the first day of the race the latest can compete.
-In the case of a mixed team (men and women) – this team will be included in the Men- or Veterancategory.

Racer equipment:

  • Skis with steal edges on the whole length with the minimum width of 60mm. Binding must allow ski and walk mode.
  • Ski-boots must be high enough to cover ankles and have VIBRAM soles (at least 80% of the soles with min. of 4 mm boot-sole profile)
  • The ski-boots must be crampons compatible
  • A pair of mountaineering ski- or trekking-poles with baskets on the bottom is required (steal tips are not allowed)
  • 2 pairs of climbing skins
  • At least 2 layers of clothing for the lower part of the body, long pants in the proper size for the racer and 3 layers of clothing for the upper part of the body. o
  • 1st layer – racing clothing (skitouring racing suit + underwear)
  • 2nd layer-warm long-sleeve shirts (f.e. POLLAR FLEECE)
  • 3rd layer-wind and waterproof layer (jacket and pants)
  • Gloves and winter-hat (could be also a multifunctional tubular headwear)
  • It is recommended to have sun glasses or ski googles depending on weather conditions
  • Avalanche transceiver – it must work properly, it must have search and rescue mode and transmit on 457 kHz frequency
  • Backpack with carry option for 2 skis, poles, ice axe, with capacity of at least 20 L
  • Avalanche probe
  • Aluminum-foil min. of 1,8m
  • First aid kid – 1x gauze bandage, 1x elastic bandage, 1x triangular bandage
  • Every racer must have the avalanche transceiver turned on through the whole race and covered under the 2nd layer of clothing. 
  • If the racer finds out a malfunction of his/her transceiver, he/she is obligated to report this to the nearest checkpoint person. A racer with non-working transceiver will be disqualified.
  • It is advisable to have spare batteries since this is a 3-day race
  • Helmet in compliance with norm EN 12492 (UIAA106) must be worn through the whole race all the time
  • Avalanche shovel: shovel blade – 20 x 20 cm, with the handle at least 40 cm of length. It must be original and certified. The shovel mustn’t be modified and the racer is responsible for the functionality of the shovel.
  • Enough fluid for drinking
  • Compass or GPS
  • Charged cell phone
  • A map with the racetrack
  • Whistle
  • Mountaineering ice tool ( of at least 50 cm length), UIAA certified
  • A pair of 10-point crampons, with 2 points at the front. They have to fit the boot properly even without using safety straps. They must be UIAA certified. If the racer doesn´t use the crampons, they must be stored with the points towards each other inside of the backpack.
  • Climbing harness UIAA certified with NO modifications
  • 2 slings, UIAA certified – 1m length, 2 pieces of locking carbines with load capacity at least 22 kN UIAA or a via ferrata set
  • 1 x prusik knot

Race organizers have the right to choose the proper gear used in race. Organizers have the right to
change usage of the gear through the race depending on the character of the track even though the
racers were not notified so before the start. Racer is responsible for his/her own gear and has to
check its functionality before the start of his own.
In the finish of each stage of the race the gear gets inspected.

Gear provided by organizers:

  • Race numbers, which must not be damaged
  • Number must be placed on a visible place on the backpack
  • Organizers can provide an electronic device (f.e. chip), which could be used to measure time and double check the results
  • Other materials, which are not specified in the official rules and are required by the organizers, must be also provided by the organizer.


  • Every racer is participating at his own risk
  • Every racer is obligated to provide a medical check status from a doctor no older than one year.
  • We advise every racer to have not only regular health coverage, but to buy also a special mountain health insurance for ski mountaineering race.
  • Organizers do not provide any health insurance for racers participating on “BOKAMI ZÁPADNÝCH TATIER”
  • Helmet, crampons, ice axe, carbine, sling and prusik knot are means of technical help, which, if not used on the recommended by the organizers parts of the track, mean violation of the safety rules.
  • When racer approaches standpoint with skis or poles (hereafter equipment) attached to the backpack, he must firstly put the equipment on the ground, only after that he can continue further activity on the standpoint. If the racer fails to do so, this means safety rules violation. 

Time limits:
Time limits can be set by the organizers in every stage of the race. In the case of the weather changes through the race, organizers have the right to change the time limits depending on the weather. If the racers are not successful to reach the time limit, they have to step down from the race. Reaching the time limit is complete, when both of the racers reach the check point and leave together. It is not possible to raise protest against the time limits set by organizers. In terms of optimal amount of time spent on the track both by racers and organizers, there will be certain checkpoints thorough individual stages of BOKAMI that will be serving as time measuring spots of the racers (teams). It is necessary to meet time requirement/limit for these checkpoints (also called STOP TIME). If the team meets the time limit, it will be able to continue the race. In case the team does not meet the time limit/STOP TIME, it will need to retire the race and take the shortest way possible to the finish (given by the organizer). Organizers will take over the racers` bibs and the racers will be disqualified. STOP TIME is calculated as the difference of the time of the first team using index stared by the Race Organizers before the stage. It might be the same for the whole race, but laso may vary from
stage to stage. It can also vary depending on the category. STOP TIME wuth the same rule and index can be valid also for crossing the finish line of each stage. The same STOP TIME calculation will be used for the finish time of each stage. Please see STOP TIME table, attachment nr.1 of the Rules. On how stop time is calculated: Let's say the index for the stage is 1,7 and the first team reaches the checkpoint in 1 hour, then is STOP TIME is calculated as follows: if 1 hour=60 minutes x 1,7 = 102 minutes/one hour 42 minutes, then maximum of time the particular team needs to reach the checkpoint is 1 hour and 42 minutes. In case of difficult weather conditions, organizers have the right to change the race or shorten some parts of the race or even cancel the whole race. The cancellation can be done even during the race right on the track. It is not possible to raise a protest against these decisions.

Required equipment check:

  • Racers are required at least 20 min. prior to a start of a stage pass avalanche beacon functionality and batteries check
  • Racers are obliged to pass the required mandatory equipment check upon arrival at finish of a stage, if organizers require them to do so
  • The organizer reserves the right to have an extraordinary check of the required equipment during the stage, especially in case of bad weather conditions, or before entering extreme parts of a stage

After each phase of the race organizers prepare ongoing results of the race. After the last stage of the race, the organizers announce unofficial results and after 15 minutes, which could be used for raising a protest, the organizers will announce official results. The winner is the team whose overall time from all the stages is the shortest. Disqualification in one of the stages of the race means a disqualification in the whole race.

Behavior of the racers:

  • Every racer is responsible for his/hers own health and preparedness for the race. The racer must be aware and obey all the rules of the race and follow all the instructions from the organizers.
  • The race-team has to leave the check point together. Putting on the skins and taking them off must be done in the place/standpoint, marked by the check committee.
  • Before the finish line, one of the racers must wait for the other team partner and they have to cross the finish line together. In the finish, the time of the second racer counts.
  • In the case, that the racers have to use ice tools, the ski poles must be attached tight to the back pack. The ski poles cannot be carried under the ski touring racing suit.
  • If one of the racers is slower than the other and the slower hears a loud shout “TRACE” (“STOPA” in Slovak),he has to step aside and let the faster racer pass by.
  • If the racer has problems: technical, health or fitness related, he can step down from the race on his own or can be disqualified by the race committee. In the case of an injury, a racer can continue after the first aid treatment and when a member of the committee says he or she is allowed to do so.
  • If one of the racers gives up, the other one from the team has to follow the organizer´s instructions.
  • Every racer is required to help everybody who is in danger (injury, health issued, avalanche accident, etc.) if he doesn´t endanger himself or other person. Organizer will then consider the time spent giving the necessary help.
  • No external help is allowed. Any external assistance will be penalized. Help is only allowed among the racers. The first aid and replacement of parts of equipment such as sticks, crampons, skis with bindings damaged to such an extent, that they do not allow the racer to continue in the race is not considered as an external help.
  • Competitors who had their damaged gear replaced during the stage are obliged to inform about this fact the nearest track control, otherwise they will be penalized for receiving external assistance.
  • The racers are not allowed to throw away any litter. The trash should be handed over to a person in the next checkpoint.

Stopping the race:

  • If the race is cancelled by the organizers, the placement of the teams will be set according to the time in the last check point.
  • If some of the racers already passed the check point and the conditions were still good then, they will be stopped by the next check point or in the finish, if there isn´t any check point between the last check and finish line. The results will be adjusted according to the arrival to the check point.
  • If some racers passed the check point and the conditions were not good anymore, the results will be taken from the last check point control.


  • Strictly forbidden

Disqualification and penalization

  • Incomplete equipment at the check point or in the finish – 5 min penalty
  • Incomplete team leaving the check point – 5 min penalty
  • External help is considered when accepting any material which could help going uphill or downhill, accepting refreshments from third parties during the stage with exception of refreshments provided by the Organizers, other maneuvers - 5 minutes
  • External help is not considered in case the first aid and replacement of parts of equipment such as sticks, crampons, skis with bindings damaged to such an extent, that they do not allow the racer to continue in the race is not considered as an external help, refreshments provided by the Organizers, mutual help amoung the racers. Competitors who had their damaged gear replaced during the stage are obliged to inform about this fact the nearest track control, otherwise they will be penalized for receiving external assistance - 5 minute
  • Leaving material or trash anywhere else but the check point control – 5 min penalty
  • Not respecting rules and orders regarding equipment – where is it mandatory to use it – 5 min penalty
  • Not respecting the race track markings – 5 min penalty
  • Not following fair-play rules – 5 min penalty
  • The organizer is entitled to disqualify the racer who repeatedly break the rules
  • Missing skis, helmet, boots, avalanche transceiver /turned off, missing, not working/, lost measuring time chip - disqualification
  • Severe misbehavior against the nature – disqualification
  • Missing the check point control – disqualification
  • Causing a dangerous situation or not administrating first aid – disqualification


  • All the protests must be in written form and handed over to the main judge within 15 min after results announcement. The time of the results announcement will be set by the organizer ahead. The organizer has one hour to give the decision in written form. The discussion will take place in the place set by the organizer. All the comments must be accompanied by the 10 euro down payment, which won´t be returned in case of negative ruling. The protest can be raised separately for each team. The protest has to be decided within one hour.

Žiarska dolina, March 2018 the organizing team of the race

“Bokami Západných Tatier”


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