Facing Fears and Challenging Yourself: Year 10 OED Expedition

The Year 10 Outdoor Education (OED) students returned from their Year 10 OED Expedition last Thursday. It was another successful and rewarding adventure for the girls. The students abseiled and rock climbed at the Wilyabrup Sea Cliffs, canoed along the Blackwood River, navigated and bushwalked to and from locations and set up camp at various campsites.

We asked Zoe Pedrin, Taylah Sugg and Lauren Hart about their experience.

What preparation was involved before heading off to camp?

Lauren: My preparation for camp involved planning my meals for the week and cooking them to ensure they were tasty and would work well. Preparing warm clothes and camping equipment to take away with me, learning relevant navigation skills and developing an understanding of the area and its environment.

Taylah: In preparation for the camp we learnt practical skills such as roping, 5H checks for climbing and abseiling. We also practised cooking on a Trangia, which was a skill we needed to cook our meals for the duration of the camp. We went to the boatshed to practise canoeing and we practised roping skills. We also practised abseiling and rock climbing using the resources available to us at school. We had to complete an expedition planner where we researched about the environment we would be in and the ways in which we needed to look after it.

Zoe: Prior to the camp, we were split into cooking groups, where we discussed the meals we would be cooking at camp and the food each of us needed to bring. We were taught the practical skills we would need on camp, such as setting up a tent. Our Outdoor Ed Expedition booklet helped us to be organised for camp, making sure we had everything we needed before we headed off on camp.

Did you have any concerns before going to camp? Were you nervous about anything?

Lauren: I was really excited about the camp, however slightly nervous about the weather conditions for the coming week as there was a high chance of thunderstorms and heavy rain forecast for the duration. Luckily, we had wonderful weather with only the occasional rain shower.

Taylah: I was also concerned about the weather before going to camp as the weather in past years hasn’t always gone as planned.

Zoe: My biggest concern entering camp was that I was going to be freezing throughout the week! Knowing that there was a possibility that we would be getting rained on had me a bit nervous that I would be frozen all camp, so whilst packing my clothes I brought heaps of layers.What challenges did you have to overcome during the camp?

 Lauren: A challenging part of the experience was packing my hiking pack efficiently. It was difficult to make everything fit in; for example not crushing my food, making sure I could access dry clothes and other things easily during the day and ensuring my bag wasn’t too heavy. However, each day became easier as I had less food to carry and became more experienced at packing my bag.

Taylah: At the camp, we had to face our fears and step up as leaders which was hard at times. We had to be able to make decisions on which way to go when hiking and encourage others to try new things.

Zoe: I have a small fear of heights and on camp, I feel as if I definitely overcame this. Standing on the edge of a 40m cliff really made me nervous and going over the edge of the cliff made me even more nervous. However, once I was over the edge of the cliff and looked at the view, I really enjoyed it.

What was the best thing about the camp?

 Lauren: My favourite experience from camp was the day spent at the Wilyabrup Sea Cliffs, where we rock climbed and abseiled on the coast. Rock climbing on a real rock face was amazing and the view from the top was surreal. Although abseiling off the cliff was very daunting it was an amazing opportunity, at such a beautiful location and we even saw a whale!

Taylah: The best experience of camp would have to be abseiling down the Wilyabrup cliffs overlooking the beautiful coastline. It was something that I had never experienced before and it was great to be able to get the opportunity to do so.

Zoe: I really enjoyed the Outdoor Ed camp and all the activities we participated in, however, my favourite part of camp would be the bond that my group and I made with each other. Our group came together really well and we worked well together at times when all of us needed to contribute to the group. I know from talking to the other girls we all feel as if we have come back from camp closer than when we left, and it’s nice to come back to school with new friends.The Year 10 OED expedition was an experience I will never forget. It was great to be independent and do things for ourselves, such as organising and cooking our own meals. I’ve made many new memories and learnt things I never knew about the environment around us. Taylah

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