Friday, 12 May 2017

12 May 2017

Greetings from Howtown in Cumbria where Miss Long and I have spent the last week with 24 Year 9 students on an adventurous challenge organised by the Outward Bound Trust and part-sponsored by SGN as part of their communities programme.

The week started at 4am on a slightly grim Monday morning and after 8 hours in the minibus, we arrived at Howtown which is located on the beautiful Lake Ullswater. The scenery is breathtaking as we are surrounded by the Lake District mountains and, being on the water's edge, students have really appreciated how wonderful it is, especially as the sun has shone all week.

Once we had collected our kit and sorted out our rooms - watching some of them try and put a duvet cover on was amusing - the first activity was the infamous jog and dip and the chance to jump in the icy waters of the lake. 

Having dealt with this brain freeze, anything was possible and the students have risen to challenge after challenge over the last five days, proving to themselves that they can achieve so much more than they realised. This has increased their self-confidence and improved their levels of resilience and determination - qualities that are so important in life.

They have struggled to overcome their fears of heights and water, climbed up waterfalls, camped wild in the mountains with no tent, walked up massive hills (despite their blistered feet) while carrying heavy backpacks and learned to work as a team with others they may not normally talk to. As one student said, " I have learned so much about myself and what I can achieve."

I hope the photos below will give you a glimpse of their experience. I will post more on the Successes page of the website in due course.

My thanks to all the parents who made it possible for their child to attend, to Miss Long for her hard work in making it happen and to SGN for their support and sending Stef and Richard as ambassadors who made such an excellent contribution to the week.

Getting ready for the gorge walk

Choosing food for the expedition
Briefing for the climb up Hollin How

Do we really have to walk that far?

Those packs look heavy!
Are we there yet???

Trying to sort out a bivouac shelter
Hurrah, success!

Food in a bag - after 4 hours of walking, it
tasted better than it looks!

Cooking dinner - the temperature dropped
to zero the night we camped

The campsite at Angle Tarn with some red deer
and a fox who stole our litter bag for company
A typical view

Marshmallows around the campfire on the last night

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