At last – summer is here! Which means that our Duke of Edinburgh expeditions are back. After last year’s expeditions had to be cancelled for well-known reasons, we are happy to say that this year we are running the full DofE programme again, with Bronze, Silver and Gold expeditions. Last weekend, the Gold group, a mix of students from years 11, 12 and 13 went out.
Kian, Archie, Olivia and Freddie boarded the minibus on Friday at 7 in the morning in the pouring rain, to be taken to the Lake District, where, 3 hours later, they stepped out of the bus into the pouring rain. Fortunately nobody forgot their waterproofs, because it wouldn’t really stop until the evening. Still, they braved the weather for 8 hours! Fortunately, the weather kept improving steadily over the following three days; while on day 2 the group were a bit disappointed to find not a view but fog on Sticks Pass, day 3 gave a dip into Greenup Gill for Kian, which he thoroughly enjoyed after a rather tough 10 mile walk in the sun.
Day 4 brought the most beautiful summery weather, with over 20°C – and a steep hill at the beginning. However, the rest of the walk took the group along the shores of Derwentwater, which at last meant some level walking, along with some stunning views over the Lake (and some ducks to feed).
Needless to say, the group passed their Gold Qualifying expedition with flying colours, and it is only a matter of time until they are invited to Buckingham Palace for their Award Presentation.
What next? On Sunday, the Bronze Qualifying Expedition will set off, followed by the Silver Expedition starting on Tuesday . . . the full DofE programme. Fingers crossed for good weather!
Regine Trotter, Duke of Edinburgh Leader