Camping is a very important part of Scouting. They’re directly involved in looking after themselves, they’re part of a team and it’s all outdoors. Camps are a great bonding event as well as a fun experience.
They camp as a Troop every other Summer, typically for 2/3 nights at a Scout Association campsite. They pitch their tents and try to keep them clean and tidy(!), do much of the cooking and camp chores and generally become a little bit more self-sufficient. They also get to do activities such a climbing, abseiling, assault courses etc. and have some free time to explore or just be with friends.
Every other year there is a 2-night Group camp. The Scouts camp under canvas (as do Cubs and Guides) whilst the younger Beavers either stay in huts or come along just for a day. The emphasis is on activities – lots to do from breakfast to supper.
There are annual competitions for archery and air-rifle shooting. In past years we have entered two teams of four scouts in each and have been winners (with a bullseye-class team!) and runners up on occasion.
There are also District-sponsored events in 5-a-side football, mountain-biking and the ‘Bridge the Misbourne’ challenge held annually in October.
We are fortunate to have a couple of very active Groups within the Misbourne District who run the ‘Grimsdyke Hike’ (22Km in the Chilterns) in November and ‘Quest’ (night-time activity hike/challenge) in February. These started as District events but have been so successful they now attract teams from throughout the UK and sometimes internationally. They are the epitome of outdoor scouting and not to be missed!
The County team organise activities and camps and offers strong support for leader training.
The most popular event for our Scouts if the ‘Longridge Water Weekend’ held on the Thames at Marlow in May each year. They camp from Friday evening to Sunday afternoon and the scouts can try out:
|Bell-boating||Caving (!)||Dinghy sailing (Toppers)|
|Sit-on kayaks||Kingpin||Dinghy sailing (Wayfarers)|
The older ones may even be able to build a raft and cook/sleep overnight on it whilst moored on the river!! The survivors then get to race them on the Sunday morning.
There are opportunities to go on International camps and Jamborees.
We also share our facilities with other scout groups on request and can sometimes make use of theirs, and/or their expertise. As an example, we are grateful to the Bucks. caving team who have led several weekend caving expeditions in the Mendips for us.
There are also opportunities to do specialist activities, such as a shooting weekend at Bisley or focused dinghy sailing or even gliding are possible. These activities are usually initiated by a particular leader with an interest in the activity. Obviously the more leaders we have the better variety the scouts get in their programme!
Then there are the activities where the scouts don’t directly undertake the activity themselves, but participate to help others. For example being part of a colour party at a Remembrance Day service or helping run a Cub Pack as part of achieving the Chief Scouts Gold Award.
The more they put in …..
…. the more they get out ….
…. even if they don’t see that at the time!