An ACC Goes Blogging - 19 Feb 2014

Freezer Camp – Wind, Rain, Ice and Sunshine

Everybody was there Friday afternoon, tents getting pitched and the wind is already starting to buffet the place. Our site was in the woods so a little more sheltered. Outer flysheets up and pinned to the ground with extra-long pegs. That should do the trick. Out on the Main Field, the early arrivals are standing on the canvas to hold it in place while the pegs are found and poles can be fed through the loops and sleeves. This could get exciting…

As the day drifts in to evening and darkness creeps in, the groups and units begin to arrive. The challenge is getting trickier now as the wind is gusting and the rain picking up again. The PACCAR Crew are on standby with the fall-back plans in place. ClimbingEveryone is pitched and the Freezer Camp weekend is officially live. The Cinema and Disco kick off proceedings. The wind batters on and the rain comes in buckets but we don’t mind…

By eleven pm, it’s the trees that start to drive the programme. Some are down in the plantation and groups need to move. And quickly. The Crew are in control, two groups are moved soon and efficiently in to Walsh and McLean.Archery Now there are tents being blown about on the the field. By the end of the night six groups have been relocated into shelter, the safety planning has done its work. The Freezer Camp weekend will go on! Nobody who was there will forget the Friday night at Freezer Camp 2014.

Saturday morning and the wind is dying. The rain has gone. What’s this? Orange light in the sky, a hint of sunshine peeking through. With a little reshaping of the weekend activities the Saturday morning will go ahead. Don't Fall OffBreakfasts are on the go around the site and the sound of Scouts and Explorers emerging into the daylight can be heard. It’s a breezy but sunny day. And with zorbing, archery, lasertag in the woods, quadbikes and more to get on with the overnight drama is fading fast. The sound of chainsaws making safe is the only reminder of the storm and of the crew doing a fantastic job to keep the show on the road.

Quad BikeSaturday evening and it’s down to the campfire circle after dark. Everybody is there and waiting for the show. Piratical hints at what is coming soon, the bright lights dim and the smoky air is infused with the eerie sound of ships calling out through the fog. Was that really a pirate doing a passable impression of John Arnold? Pirates of the Caribbean on the screen and spectacular fireworks all around. There is no escape in to the woods here. After the show, its back to unit campfires and discussions late into the clear and moonlit night.

A frosty Sunday morning makes it truly a Freezer Camp at last. It also promises a dry and sunny day for getting the tents down safely and mostly dry. JamieBut wait, more activities. Robogeddon, laser tag again and always a session with Fred on the archery to be enjoyed. The climbing wall team have been busy all weekend. How can it be 2:30pm already and time for closing the weekend. Everyone is happy it’s clear. Loud cheers for the event organiser Jamie Brunt and a well-deserved thanks to the team who have made it all possible. Thanks too for all of the leaders who have worked on keeping sites together, getting everyone there and safely out again on Sunday afternoon. Who is coming next year? Nearly everyone cheered for that!

Getting the Weather in to the Programme

So a weekend that started out wild, windy and wet, with no small amount of dramatic impact down in the woods turned in to a fantastic activity weekend with bright sunshine by the end. Meteorological BadgeOnce again, the Great British Weather provided a tremendous background to the activities we set up for our young people. With that in mind, its a great opportunity to introduce a bit of weather forecasting in to our programme. The Scout section has a badge dedicated to just that with the Meteorologist Activity Badge which gives Scouts the opportunity to very actively gain an understanding of how our weather works. And for Explorers, where the Expedition programme gets more challenging and leads on to adventures in wilder and more exposed areas, an evening session on the way the weather works and how to stay safe in different conditions can be a valuable building block to successful trips. For more information on how to run a "Weather Evening" contact the GLMW Hill Walking team at getinthehills@glmwscouts.org.uk and arrange for one of them to come and visit your unit or take a look at the Weather Forecast Factsheet for ideas on the things you can talk about or build in to an evening programme.

See you soon at a meeting place near you…

Richard

The Events List

February

27th Launch night for Expedition Practice Route Planning Sessions
Greenford DHQ, 8:00pm

March

1-2nd Endurance 80

April

11-13th GLMW Expedition Training and Assessment Practice Weekend

May

11th PACCAR Woodland Challenge
including the Great Chocolate Race and Lasertag in the Woods (more info coming soon)

June

27-29th Malvern Challenge – potentially the last ever running of this great event
http://sr-mc.co.uk/

July

4-8th GLMW Expedition Assessment Weekend
4-6th Sun Run – potentially the last ever running of this event
http://sr-mc.co.uk/
11-13th Gilwell 24
http://www.gilwell24.info/default/

August

2-9th WINGS 2014

September

19-21st PACCAR SkyCamp Challenge 2014

Previous Blog Posts

19th Feb 2014 – Freezer Camp and the Weather

6th Feb 2014 – Expedition and YL training
19th Jan 2014 – Knowledge & Creativity
10th Jan 2014 – Fire Starters, Leader Feedback and Communications
Welcome to 2014 and An ACC Goes Blogging