Summer camp 2015

Our summer camp at Wick Woods was blessed with the rarest of commodities…..sunshine.  Obviously, there was a torrential downpour and a quite extraordinary lightning show one evening, but for the most part, glorious sunshine and warmth made our 2015 camp one to remember. Also, for the first time in ages, we camped as a group. The Cubs and Scouts kicked things off on Friday, followed on Saturday by an intrepid group of Beavers who came to join in the fun.

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Taking a watching brief, our dad helpers Marcus, Jim, Chris and Kevin begin the weekend as they intended to continue it…

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The Cubs and Scouts settled into familiar territory and ready themselves for a night hike through GWP.

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Pressed into action, Jim begins begins a 46 hour stint of cooking, sandwich spreading, fruit slicing and squash making…

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The first night at camp is historically a long one.  Armed with kit bags full of sweets and crisps (parents…!?) the munching from the tents could be heard in neighbouring Berkshire.  Eventually….. things quietened down and the leaders were able to retire to their tents eagerly anticipating the four hours sleep they would get before the Cubs dawn chorus would begin.

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The kids were up early, but the leaders were ready, bacon and eggs sizzled and a big Saturday morning breakfast began.  Before the weekends big hike, a quick game of football/rugby/rounders..

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With temperatures predicted to get close to 35 (over 90 degrees in real money..) the task of getting suncream on a group of reluctant Cubs began.

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Never off duty, our contraband squad was alerted by some heavy-duty rustling from one of tents.  Smuggling contraband into camp is a serious offence.  After a thorough search, two fun-size boxes of Skittles were confiscated and a naughty Cub reprimanded.  Tut-tut…

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The highlight of the weekend is the 6 mile hike around Great Windsor Park.  The troops set off in the sunshine..

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The equestrian obstacle course beside Obalisk lake is a perennial favourite with the cub pack.  The long jump competition began with some pretty serious leaps.  Our resident photographer, Mowgli, was on hand to capture the contest.

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The pack then embarked on a proper steeple-chase over a course that the leaders would struggle to complete. Not so the Cubs, who tore over the obstacles with tremendous agility.  The event was won, as most sporting contests are, by George.  He really is an incredible athlete and had better not forget his favourite Cubs leaders after winning Olympic gold medals. We will find you…!

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We carried on through the park onto Smiths Lawn where a game of polo was in full flow.   As the kids settled down to watch, Baloo explained the rules.. “errr…Come On You Spurs..!”

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The ponies thundered across the turf, it really was quite dramatic.  With everybody now getting hungry, we continued through the park to one of our favourite spots, Cow Pond, and broke out the sandwiches.

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We met a few of our Scouts on the way.  Theo, Will and Harry look suitably cool…

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Caelan and Edward tried their hand, or rather their faces, at camouflage, while some of the Cubs practised their tracking skills.. All very Bear Grylls… 

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With the temperature nudging 30 degrees, it was a weary group that finally made it back to camp. The leaders had taken a load of sponges secretly to camp anticipating the need for kids to cool down.  After filling up a number of buckets, the Cubs twigged what was happening…WATER FIGHT….!

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The sponges flew through the air until everybody was royally soaked, including the leaders.  Those rotters….!  We then settled into the mess tent for tea and cake.  It has become a bit of a summer camp tradition to celebrate James’ birthday.  He did not let us down, bringing a large cake to jolly the party along. Happy Birthday James.

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A splendid dinner followed including burgers, sweetcorn and a fine stew.  Our numbers were then swelled by the arrival of eight intrepid members of our Beavers colony.  It was great to see Harvey, George, Charlie O., Nathan, Aaron, Josh, Charlie T and Luke enjoying their first Scout group camp. Welcome…! Although still very warm, the whole Scout Group settled in around the camp fire for a proper sing-song, led with great gusto by Roo and Rosie.

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The leaders were confident that the ‘second night syndrome’ would kick in, and sure enough, the Cubs and Scouts began drifting off to bed a few hours earlier than the previous evening.  Ahhhh, peace… Unfortunately no one had explained this to the Beavers who were chatting, laughing and shining torches until the wee small hours.  The little so and so’s…

On Sunday morning, the Beavers were officially timed as rising at 04:53…in the morning..!  George decided to help keep the fire going.

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Some made it out of bed a little later than others. Morning Theo…..

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While our annual Sunday football match kids v Dad’s played itself out to a contentious 4-3 victory (at the death) for the kids, the Cubs sixers got to practise some knife work under the guidance of Scout leader Roo.

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Tired and slightly dishevelled, our group packed up camp and waited for the parents to come and collect.  A huge thank you to all the Dad’s who spent the weekend with us, looking after the kids, cooking, entertaining and adding to the fun.  We have already booked Wick Woods for Summer 2016…!

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