Day 2 is nearly at an end and the children are currently getting ready for bed after a full day of exciting outdoor pursuits.
We were greeted by another glorious sunny morning and an equally glorious cooked breakfast. With bellies pleasantly full the groups headed off to meet their leaders in preparation for a day off site.
Tenzing group headed off by train to Barmouth for a hike and a scramble amongst the glorious Welsh hillsides. The children had their first brush with the local wildlife in the shape of a very vocal sheep. After much discussion (between sheep and children) it remained unclear as to whether the sheep was grateful for the company or annoyed at the intrusion.
Bonnington and Simpson group collected canoes from the wharf before driving in land to a point further along the estuary. An initial warm up comprising a 150m canoe carry served as a warm up for the challenge to come. With the tide and wind in their favour, the journey along the estuary back to the wharf is a pleasant one with wonderful scenery to admire en route. Today the tide was in their favour but the wind had other ideas and clearly decided that the Howe Green armada needed a challenge. Spurred on by the opportunity of a first visit to the ice cream parlour, they battle waves and wind (stopping for a picnic lunch to make it seem even more quintessentially British) before reaching their destination in good spirits and good time.
The final group, Macarthur, undertook a new challenge that we hadn’t faced on previous trips – the commando crawl. This really was something else! A rope was suspended from the jetty to the side of the wharf and the children had to try to crawl from one side to the other. To their great credit, every single child (and staff!) braved the challenge showing great courage, determination and balance. No one made it across completely but a couple were very close. As a result, everyone enjoyed an early bath. After a quick lunch they packed up sit-on kayaks and made their way by minibus to a beautiful part of the countryside and enjoyed fun and games on a slow moving river. As well as enjoying the beautiful countryside, they were treated to several fly pasts by the RAF.
All returned to the centre for another fantastic meal including choices such as chicken curry, Singapore noodles, chips, salad or , in some cases, all of the above. Evening activities followed along with preparation for tomorrow’s activities (a mixture of hikes and rock climbing) and having started typing this blog to the sound of excited squeals around the building, it is now perfectly quiet.