ACS International School

From kayaks to cycles to zip-wires over quarries � a week at Adventure Training camp!

Published Friday 16th of May 2014 01:31:00 PM

The Oundle School CCF Adventure Training contingent departed for Snowdonia on a bright and sunny morning in late March, arriving at their barracks anticipating a week of exciting activities to include rock climbing, kayaking and cycling.

Pupil, Lucy James (14) commented, �Our first challenge was kayaking: although we had planned to kayak on a river near our barracks, the water level had decreased radically due to unexpectedly good weather. Not to be put off, the teachers decided to let us kayak on the sea. This proved to be much harder work that some of us had expected, however everyone completed the day pleased with what they had achieved.�

The following day, the group went climbing on a rock face near Porthmadog, experiencing a real sense of achievement reaching the top and enjoying the stunning views.

There followed a two day expedition climbing Tryfan.

Lucy added, �The climb ended up with a lot of scrambling up to the summit. Once at the top the views were spectacular and the discovery of some remaining snow afforded much fun with those at the front snowballing the second half of the group. During a bit of navigation practice down the mountain, one member of the group successfully steered us straight through a patch of rather boggy ground... earning for himself the questionable honour of the Columbus prize! After camping over-night we had a further walk back to barracks.�

The penultimate day involved mountain biking; hurtling down steep inclines definitely got the adrenaline going. On the final day the group experienced the longest and fastest zip-wire in Europe; one mile long and taking just one minute to descend � with some participants able to reach speeds in excess of 100mph.

Lucy concluded, �The Zip-wire was based over a fully working quarry. Before the real thing we first went on a smaller wire which was in itself terrifying. Having been strapped in and in the knowledge that I couldn't do anything about it I relaxed into the experience and I really enjoyed swooping over the ground below me; it was amazing! On the big zip wire we flew over the precipice over the lake at the bottom of the quarry - it was as if we were running off a cliff with the knowledge that there was a 500ft drop below! We finished the week with a navigation race which was very hard work but fun. I would like to thank all the teachers involved for such a fantastic week.�

Trip organiser, Dr Walter Holmstrom commented, �The cadets came from all three services within the CCF and from a variety of year groups. They quickly bonded after a challenging day kayaking on the sea off Anglesey and this was re-inforced with subsequent days of mountain walking, climbing and kayaking when the more senior cadets encouraged and helped to instruct younger and less-experienced members of the group.�

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