Last week two teams of girls took part in a bronze Duke of Edinburgh practise expedition. After a quick kit check and a thorough search for hidden contraband of hairspray, make up and bottles of Irn-Bru, the group were ready to head down to the Cairngorms National Park. Parts of their training included navigating by map and compass from Drumguish to a spot just south of Loch an Eilean. The weather over the two days was fantastic and thankfully in the afternoon there was a breeze to keep the midges at bay.
It was the first time in Charleston DofE history where the pupils cooked their own lunch, as sandwiches are usually the preferred choice. After lunch one of the groups took a wrong turn but quickly reassessed where they were and as a team managed to navigate to the next check point.
After arriving at the campsite, the pupils had to find an area where it was safe to take water from a nearby stream, learn to cook on a trangia (camp stove), pitch their tents and prepare for the next day. The rest of the evening was spent relaxing and playing games.
On Day 2, with all the hills now behind them, the pupils were packed up and ready to head for Glenmore Lodge by 9am. Most pupils had a good night’s sleep but the pace was slightly slower due to blistered feet. The groups did really well to meet their check in times and regularly kept tabs on each other to ensure no one was struggling.
By 4:30pm the pupils were almost finished their expedition. As they came round the last corner some of the pupils where so glad to see the bus and teachers that they actually ran the last 200m. However, the staff soon realised it wasn’t them the pupils were pleased to see, after hearing the words “Miss, can I charge my phone?”
A further two teams have to complete their practise expedition followed by their assessment.
Mr Scott Nairn, Acting PT Music