Over the summer many squadrons take the opportunity to provide expeditions to support their cadets through the ‘Duke of Edinburgh’s Award’ expedition section. Whether this is at Bronze, Silver or Gold level, by foot, canoe or bikes cadets work hard to prepare their route cards, kit and meal plans to ensure a successful expedition.
On Saturday, 3rd August 7 cadets headed off to the Chiltern Hills, Oxfordshire to take part in a practice expedition. Fg Off Jane Wicks from 2410 (Didcot) Squadron organised the weekend to enable cadets from the central sector of Thames Valley Wing to put their expedition training into practice under remote supervision of staff from within the sector.
The route provided a pleasant environment for the cadets covering open farmland, woodland areas and including some hills to climb. The practice expedition involved 2 days of walking and an overnight camp at ‘White Mark Farm’ and finding out how to ensure their expedition meets the 20 expedition’s conditions that the DofE sets down. The groups had prepared their route cards in advanced and learnt the importance of an accurate route card whilst been out in the hills is vital to a successful expedition. The cadets brushed up on their compass skills learning how bearings are important whilst out navigating and how team work and communication is important outside of the squadron environment.
All the cadets had a great time, even with a couple of sore feet and the cadets that participated from 966 (Wallingford), 2210 (Cowley), 2267 (Brize Norton) and 2410 (Didcot) squadrons gained element of their ‘Are You on Target’ achievements.