Duke of Edinburgh Silver Practice Expedition to the Chilterns
On Saturday 17th September, five groups of Year 11s set off to the Chilterns for their silver DofE practice expedition. We were accompanied by Mr Futter, Mr Shoults and Ms Wright, with Mrs Critcher joining us on Sunday (as she’d been to see the Queen lying in state). We set off from Penn Wood, navigating our way across the countryside with our 65 litre backpacks. We walked approximately 16km passing through fields of cows and sheep, with a map and a compass to guide us! It was great to be out in the country for a weekend, especially when we got treated to uncharacteristically warm weather. Our day’s walk led us to Paccar Scout Camp which had great facilities and lots of space to have fun! We were lucky enough to be the first group back to the campsite, so we were able to choose the best pitch for our tents over the weekend (sheltered, flat and not too busy). For dinner we all had ‘boil-in-the-bag’ expedition food, which although it took a few tries to cook them properly, were surprisingly tasty! At the end of the evening, we managed to roast some marshmallows on the fire – a great end to our first day.
The next day our walk was a loop returning to the same campsite for our second night. The second day’s walk took us closer to the edge of a town and a canal. We saw lots of swans and ducks as we walked along the canal, and found the perfect spot on the edge of a canal to eat lunch. We all thoroughly enjoyed our pre-made meals which gave us a burst of energy to complete the day! Our walk ended with a steep climb through some fields and woods before making it back to the campsite. Once again we had a lovely campsite dinner before heading off to bed. Our third day was cut short in order to allow everyone to travel home ahead of the Queen’s funeral on the 19th. We got everything packed up ready for an early departure from the campsite, marking the end of our expedition.
We are all looking forward to our assessed expedition next spring!
By Zara D, Year 11
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