News Section

5F Carry on regardless

Article posted: Aug 15, 2012 by Sqn Ldr Mayoh-Smith

Two teams from 5F successfully completed their Bronze DofE expeditions last week. There were high hopes in both teams that the weather would be more favourable than on their practise expedition which was continuous rain and lots of mud

Here Sgt Chris Barford gives an insight as to what his team got up to:

My team and I completed the Bronze Duke of Edinburgh expedition recently and it was quite eventful.
On day 1, we had high hopes, the practice went well and we were happy with what we had to do and where we were going. All was going well until after several hours of walking, the heavens decided to open. We rushed to put on our waterproofs and rucksack protectors and in the process one of our team put his backpack in a huge pile of sheep poo!! The rest of the team found it hilarious but as you can imagine, he wasn’t so happy. We weren’t too far away from the end of our route so he cleaned his rucksack as best as he could and we carried on to the campsite.

At the campsite, we put our tents up and got them set up and started to think about dinner, we all shared gas stoves and pans to save waiting and we were happy with how the day went – until it started to get dark!! There was a large wooded area behind our tents and one of my friends decided to tell me a story about a figure in a suit that stands staring at you and slowly starts getting closer every time you see him. This petrified me and was made worse when as I left the toilet block before bed, some members of the other team thought it’d be funny to jump out from around the corner from me and scare the daylights out of me. As a result, I think we all struggled to sleep.

However, on day 2 we got up, cooked a large breakfast, packed up camp and set off for the next day of our exped. After day 1 we expected everything to go smoothly and that we would reach the destination on time. It was looking promising until again, the heavens opened. This time however, with thunder and lightning. Under some cover, we prepared ourselves for setting out in this monsoon. We didn’t take more than 50 paces when a bolt of lightning struck no more than 30 meters away from us. At this point, we all froze, looked around at each other and decided what to do – turn back or carry on? We carried on, slowly, until we reached the cover of a farm. With the rain starting to ease off, we set out again and soon it had cleared completely. The sun came out as we were nearing the end so we had one final break and then soon completed the second day.
We were all wet, hot and tired, but all very happy that we taken another step to completing our Bronze D of E.

Submitted by CI D.Upton