We have just had a very successful start to our training, with an action packed weekend at Ferny Crofts Scout Activity Centre; The home of Hampshire Scouting. The weekend was a great opportunity to bond with the team and marked the start of our journey to Cambodia with activities focused around developing skills that would be used on expedition, particularly bush craft and survival activities.
Saturday morning was kicked off with an activity I’m sure all Scouts have done before – Pioneering! The first challenge was to build a bridge from one side of the lake to the other and safely get the whole team across and back again. After much debate, the team came up with the idea of building loads of A frames and strapping them all together to span the distances. This was going well with the team making slow progress, apparently A frames are heavy and awkward to move when your stood on a three inch pole over a deep, dirty, cold lake. But we did make it to the other side with only a few shoes getting wet.
I’m sure you can guess what happened next…. In short the bridge worked going across the lake because all the A frames were tensioned and leaning out so when you try to go back across they all lose tension and fall over. Luckily a member of the Leader team is study Engineering and for saw this problem…. Or maybe not!
The rest of Saturday was spent doing bush craft activities; fire lighting, knife craft & backwoods cooking and discussing the next 18months of training and what to expect. At 19:30 chicken, lamb, vegetables and potatoes were all served which had been prepared outdoors and slowly cooking throughout the afternoon. Potatoes being a personal favourite! With a warm dinner inside them, participants were set off for a night hike route where challenges would be set at three checkpoints along the way. Challenges including pacing and navigation points, a problem solving task and a team building task all designed to access knowledge and team dynamics so the remaining training weekends can be pitched at the correct level. We promised we wouldn’t mention one team getting lost and stumbling back over a 1hour late…. With everyone officially worn out, we headed out into the forest, climbed into our hammocks and enjoyed the night out under the stars. Which again, a member of the leader team didn’t fall out of….. Cough, Cough, Dave…..
At 07:45 Sunday morning the team were woken up and put through their paces with a physical training session to start increasing fitness to prepare for trekking and mountain climbing. The run was led by Matt with help from HSX members Jamie and Alan and consisted of running, leap frogs, Spartan crawling, press ups, sit ups, fireman lifts and a team challenge around the Ferny Crofts Adventure Course. This was followed by the traditional sunny BBQ with other members of HSX, the County team and participant’s parents and acted as the perfect opportunity to bond and speak to members about their experiences in HSX.
Our next training weekend, will see the team head to North Wales in October. We still have spaces for participants so if you would like to know more you can find an information pack here or apply to become a participant.
HSX Cambodia Leader Team.