New Farnley: 8th South-West Leeds Scouts Go ‘Back2Basics’

8 March 2018

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The Scout section of the 8th South-West Leeds Scouting Group went to the Hunters Greave campsite for two weekend camps in January and February, which were called “Back2Basics” camps, writes 11-year-old Wolf Patrol leader Jacob Shillito.

We were working towards our Outdoor Challenge Award, which leads towards the Chief Scout’s Gold Award (the highest award a Scout can earn).

We pitched our tents in the dark, which was awkward because people had to be careful as they could trip over the guy lines on the tents. Then we had a safety check talk with the ground rules laid out to everyone, before we played games like ‘Spotlight’ (a man-hunt in the dark with torches).

We had hot dogs for our supper before covering what makes a well-organised camp and how we should set out a sensible campsite.

On Saturday we had breakfast, but afterwards two Scouts had to clear up and wash up for being a nuisance the night before by not going to sleep! We then learned how to prepare a fire for cooking on; we needed to create embers to be able to cook the food properly.

We used flint and steel to light the kindling; then we had to keep the fire going by feeding it and ‘wafting’ it to make sure that the flames didn’t go out. We made chicken casserole in a foil bag with jacket potatoes to eat.

In the evening we decided to watch a DVD in the main building before playing spotlight again. That night we had pizza for supper. After that we went to bed and people were a lot quieter about going to sleep on that night!

On the final day of the camp we had a cooked breakfast and cleared up the campsite by doing litter picks.

We packed our belongings into our rucksacks (although I managed to leave my roll-mat behind!). Then we struck the tents, which was a bit difficult because they were wet. After this, we learned how to make bivouacs to protect us in survival situations. For this we used ground sheets and bungee cords and sticks.

We learnt how to make various camp gadgets, including a table and a cooking utensil holder, as well as learning how to make a fork just from what’s around on the campsite.

We really enjoyed our time away and are very grateful to the adults who gave up their free time to take us, especially our Scout leader, Steve.

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