My Gold DofE
Cat vs the Turtleheads
The gold expedition started for me on a cold and wet morning at RAF
Halton in the Wing Training Centre. This
was the first test of both our
dedication and cold weather kit!
Around 13 people turned up to the
initial meeting where it was said by one of the oracles from the HBWATG that
ďat least half of you wonít be on the expeditionĒ. How right they were.
The final team size was 4 consisting of myself, Colin, Nick and Cat.
next step was for the instruction on the gold DofE syllabus to start.
We had various lectures on things
such as map reading, first aid, camp craft and emergency procedures.
The first few lectures covered the
basic theory requirements and then after that it was time to test it all out on
the first practice.
practices covered all extremes of weather, below freezing (donít leave a wet
trangia outside your tent!), extreme heat and pouring rain. The purposes of
these were two fold. To allow us a chance to gel as a team and also to brush up
and test all the theory learned in the class room. These practises were really
good fun and gives you a good chance to test and refine your kit. (I was
carrying less weight on the expedition
than I was on the first practise)
actual expedition took place in the Snowdonia national park in Wales. Our route
took us over Cadair Idris on the second day, the site of many a nightmare and
fond memories for our instructors. We travelled up on a coach with another group
of cadets who were bound for the summer expedition. The Sunday was used to
familiarise ourselves and have a laugh when Colin got himself stuck in ďfat
mans crack,Ē donít ask. The expedition started on the Monday and the first
day went well and morale was high, with lots of jokes and posed moments.
second day and Cadair brought with it low morale, difficult walking and thirst
when our water ran out about 2 hours before the end. I have never been
happier to see a small stream! The Third and fourth day were not without
interest with sliding down hills through woods, coming up with our team name
(DONíT ASK!!), river crossings running the last quarter of a mile to see Steve
beaming at us and the knowledge that we had done it. Our gold DofE
expedition, it was great, an experience that will live with me for a long time.
Take the challenge and have a go for yourself, get in contact with HBWATG.
|Web site by: Flt Lt Geoff Bowles RAFVR(T), ML(S), SPA This page last updated on 22 November 2003|