Saturday, 1 May 2010

Day 5

Day 5 started with lots of packing, organising and finding lost property before setting off on our last adventure - a forest walk to Loch Morlich. After a short minibus ride we walked along a beach and then into the woods, learning much information about the area as we went. In the woods we saw some spectacular scenery and the effects of nature were obvious on some of the trees.
There was a bridge and stream just perfect for a game of Pooh sticks
and we had a few games of 'camouflage' in which we had to make ourselves look invisible amongst the trees. Those with bright colours were easy to spot but others became very good at hiding! We managed to find everyone again thankfully. We learned many interesting facts about woodlands as we went but all too soon it was time to go back for our final lunch and goodbyes.
A huge thank you must be said to the excellent instructors who were vigilant with safety instructions, always patient and encouraging. Thank you Pete, Sam, Keedy, Steve and others involved with our groups. The whole experience was very well organised the centre facilities are ideal for school trips and also family adventure holidays.

Here we are outside our chalets before we left.

We had a good bus trip up to Scrabster and made good time, arriving long before the waiting rooms were open so thanks to the driver for allowing us to stay on the bus until opening time.
The boat trip was better than the first one with some people managing to catch up on some much needed sleep! Although everyone had a great time there was much cheering and waving when parents and siblings were spotted at the pier.

Again a huge thank you must be said to Leslie and Graham for their massive input and support. It was really appreciated. It is invaluable to have leaders who know the rules of football, a great sense of humour, and are willing to take part in the challenges themselves!

The pupils have to be commended also for their resilience, perseverance, courage and team spirit shown throughout the week.

There were many special moments, much laughter when things went wrong, challenges met and hidden skills brought to the fore! It all helped to make the trip such a success.

Here are some images from the barbecue on Thursday night and the forest adventure.

At last some video footage from over the week that I haven't managed to get on the blog before!

Thursday, 29 April 2010

Day 4

We were so tired last night that it was great to have a movie to watch instead of the usual physical activities at free time.
Today was another mixture of activities with dry slope skiing, zipwire, adventure course, canoeing, archery and silver maze. Again there was fantastic team spirit and encouragement within the groups.
Kayleigh, Roxy, Julia and Leanne need a special mention for overcoming their fears and coming down the zipwire. Jack also needs a mention for rescuing Mrs Bunning from a plunge in the pond when she missed the brake rope and started to slide backwards! Well done Jack.
We had a special visitor today! Mr Geddes popped in to see us on his way back to Orkney. Everyone was delighted to see him and he managed to find time to go canoeing with Adam and his dad.

Tonight we will be busy packing up and having a last game and barbecue. We collected some wood for a bonfire also so that should keep us warm. The weather has been very kind to us and we've only had a few spots of rain (unlike you poor souls back at home I hear!)

Tomorrow we will go on a forest ramble before time to head back on the bus.

We finally managed to catch a squirrel on camera! They were very active this morning and difficult to photograph but Ruth managed it. Well done Ruth. Some oyster catchers have also managed to lay eggs on the dry ski slope which is a very odd and dangerous place to nest!

Here's a slideshow again but I haven't had time to upload any more videos yet.

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Day 3

Another peaceful night at camp! Chalets are looking surprisingly tidy too! Football turned into rugby last night (choice of the other school!) and many people were very tired afterwards. No wonder they slept well with all the fresh air and exercise.
Here are some video clips from yesterday that we didn't manage to upload last night.

Today has mostly been about climbing with all groups tackling the climbing wall and abseiling down a massive tree! Everyone should be extremely proud of themselves today for the way they have tackled their challenges, some overcoming their fear of heights and especially for the way they have encouraged and supported each other. It's great to see them going beyond what they thought they would be capable of and it's also a huge boost to their self esteem when they have that feeling of achievement at the end. There's a fantastic feeling of team spirit amongst the groups too.
One group had a canoeing session on the pond and got extremely wet! They had a bit of target practice too at the archery range where Emma managed to achieve the highest score. Well done Emma.
The other two groups had a great time on the dry ski slope and have to be commended for their perseverence. The surface is quite hard and it is really painful when you fall but everyone just picked themselves up and got on with it.

Julia says she thought that skiing looked really boring but now that she's had a go and really enjoyed it she can't wait to have a go for real.Here's a slideshow of the day.Don't forget that you can leave a comment at the foot of the blog if you like!

You can see some video clips of todays activities further down the page.They take a while to upload on to the blog so it may be later before they appear.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Day 2

Everyone behaved immaculately overnight and had a good sleep ready for today and what a busy day we've had!
We started the day with some orienteering around the grounds. Using the maps was a great way to help us get to know where everything is and finding some of the objects was quite a challenge. We had a competiton to see who could find most points and the result ended up very close. Razzle Dazzle were the eventual winners so well done Ryan, Ruth and Robert! Is it something to do with the letter R?
The groups were split for afternoon activities with groups 1 & 2 tackling the silver maze and group 3 on the zipwire and adventure course.
The zipwire is really high and a bit daunting but our guys were great and rose to the challenge as you would expect! Some adults even had a go!
(Conversation between Camron and Mrs McRae -
Camron:I want to hear you scream.
Mrs McRae: Why would I scream?
Camron: Because that's what old people do!
I hope he meant adults!)
Adam and his dad had a shot too so we are all proud of each other tonight.
The Adventure course has lots of ropes, nets and tunnels to tackle and is great fun. Here's Emma emerging from a tunnel.
The silver maze group had great fun tackling their problem solving challenges and some ended up quite muddy! Ms Rosie had a problem holding on to her shoes and will definitely need to get the cleaning stuff out tonight!
Again everyone was very engaged with the activity and proved they able to meet any challenge although Kayleigh says that the Mission Impossible is Impossible! She advises anyone trying it to wear old clothes and shoes!
Everyone had a quick swim before tea and are now having some well earned free time - I guess it's footie again for some! Others are enjoying the air hockey, table football and pool as well. It's great to be able to meet pupils form the other school and make some new friends too.
Check out this fabulous photo Mrs Bunning took of Adam coming out of a tunnel!

Here's a slideshow of more people having fun and also some nature shots. We have seen some squrrels but haven't managed to capture them on film yet!

Monday, 26 April 2010

Nethy day 1

Hello folks
We all arrived safely at Nethybridge around 4.30 this afternoon. The boat trip was a wee bit choppy and resulted in some poor souls having a technicolour yawn! However they all handled it very maturely and felt much better when we got out into the fresh air. The bus was waiting at Scrabster and we had a lovely run down the road with the weather improving steadily as we went. We had a brief stop in Brora to stretch our legs and sample some of the delicious ice cream!
When we arrived we were shown into our chalets and given an introductory talk. We even had a quick fire drill so that we all know the safety procedures.
Time then for a quick kick around of the football before a dinner of broth, fish fingers and yet more ice cream!
Everyone was quite hungry by this time and ate a good helping.
Insch Primary school have a party of pupils here too so there will be many football matches I suspect as there seems a keen competitive spirit amongst the youngsters (and perhaps our male leaders too!)
After our free time we will have a Timeout gathering together in the theatre, then supper and time for bed. I don't know about the pupils but I will sleep well tonight I think!
Not many photos for you tonight but check out the slide show below.

Here are some brief video clips from today.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Have a great time, everyone!

Looking forward to Nethybridge

We are all excited about our trip to the Abernethy Activity Centre. We will travel from Stromness on Monday 26th April and then by bus to Nethybridge. Here's hoping we get good travelling weather.

We hope to arrive by 5pm and get settled into our chalets. We have a very busy week of activities planned and you will be able to view photographs and videos from this blog which will be updated daily.
Click on the link on the right hand pane to find out more about the Abernethy Activity Centre.