On Saturday 11th June 24 Year 9’s and 10’s were up and about early, in school by 7.30 pm, for the start of their Bronze DofE Assessment Expedition. We set off in two minibuses to Simonsbath on Exmoor and met our assessor who weighed our bags to check they weren’t too heavy! Despite them feeling very loaded, they were all about a quarter body weight or less, which is a DofE requirement. Then we set off in four teams, going in different directions. The assessor checked on us (and our navigation skills) at the source of the River Exe and then we were off again. It was one of those annoying weather days when every few minutes it would rain briefly and then get too hot again for waterproofs, but the scenery was great, with some very steep hills – at least the worst one was downhill! From about 4 pm on wards groups started arriving at the camp in Malmsmead, and once again the assessor was there checking on our camp craft skills and watching us cook up tea (pasta and boil in the bag rations being the preferred options). It was a nice night and we had a campfire and chatted until about 11 pm, when everyone suddenly realised there was a 6 am start the next day and went to bed quickly.
Sunday started with a bit of a downpour, wetting the tents nicely, but we had breakfast and had all the tents down and were off again before 8 am. Once again we had different routes, with two groups following parts of the coastal path and others the Lyn Rivers. Eventually we arrived at the final destination – Lynmouth. There we had a debrief with the assessor who picked out strengths and weaknesses in our teams – thankfully more strengths. We all passed our expedition.