Year 10s take part in Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award

Over the Bank Holiday weekend Oscar, Leon and I went on our Practice Expedition for our silver D of E Award.  For our silver we went canoeing for three days. We started at Milton Country Park where we received our buoyancy aids and our paddles. We were then shown how to pick the canoes up. Once we had brought the canoes down to the lakes we packed our stuff into the barrels.

We ventured onto the lakes for our training. We learnt how to set off and beach land. At 1pm, we brought the canoes back to the trailer and then to the river just outside of the park. We had to walk through the park and we did get a bit lost, but Oscar’s instinct proved more useful than Google Maps. At 1:30pm we set off to our first campsite. Our group of eight managed to get to the campsite, having passed through a riverlock, at 4:30pm, approximately. That night, Leon and I cooked our first meal and Oscar and Maxime, who was from London joining our group, supplied the dessert. For the main meal we had chicken with veggies on spaghetti. Oscar went a bit exotic with his food – he brought ingredients for pancakes and we had pancakes for dessert.

We went back into the water for a second day, making the longest number of days we had been canoeing consecutively.  At lunchtime we had our own food and we discussed who would be best in which boat. We had all swapped around who was in which canoe. From then on, we moved slower but made much better progress and worked better as as team. However, there was always one crew who were shouting at everyone – Leon clearly forgot how to steer!

That night, we had steak with soya sauce with veggies on rice. The cake for dessert, having been in the barrel all this time, was quite squashed.  Unfortunately, the custard had burnt in the pan so all we had were the cake crumbs.

On the third day we were the most tired.  Fortunately, we had changed our destination due to the current and wind. Having planned our Qualifier Route that morning, we all enjoyed our last stroll down the river to Denver Sluice.   (Written by Daniel S)

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