After the joys of Speech Day, eight cadets from both Army and RAF section deployed to the White Peaks to exercise and confirm all their new found skills on navigation, camp craft, leadership and most of all team spirit.
The first evening was spent checking kit, meeting their DofE assessor and generally relaxing at their base camp before the expedition began the following morning. As the morning sun rose, the cadets collapsed their camp and set out on their 15 km journey. The trek would be tough in certain areas of their route, but this was part of the assessment process to ensure the terrain was achievable but challenging. Anyone who has walked the East side of the Roaches can confirm it certainly is testing, especially with three days of supplies on your back.
Day two provided a more challenging route and whilst the navigation was very similar to the previous day, the terrain was certainly not. The first 4km was undulating, steep, boggy ground – enough to sap the legs within the first two hours. However the cadets made good progress and seemed to enjoy the day, taking in the beautiful surroundings and collating information for their respective expedition aims.
Day three in true typical English fashion saw a wet start to the day, wet tents to be packed is never a welcome sigh,t let alone a heavier back-pack due to the wet kit. Not to be deterred, the cadets were soon on their way making over much easier terrain and using their well-versed navigational skills.
Having completed three days with two nights camping whilst on the expedition phase, I am pleased to report that the Assessor has awarded our cadets with an expedition Silver DofE pass. Plans are now in progress to work towards their Gold expedition adventure, which they inform me will use any other form of none-motorised transport other than walking!