The camping trip I just returned from was run by an organization called World Challenge, and took place on Alladale Wildlife Reserve.
Twenty-two kids ages 13-14, 3 adults, and one 16 year old helper, all from Dornoch, attended the trip. The leaders from World Challenge were very focused on making sure the kids learned a lot by trial and error and worked through the difficulties they come across as a team, with little to no interference from the adults. Translation: I didn't have to do much.
I stayed in a tent with another girl about my age who works for the school. Have you ever met a stranger and then had to share a tent with them for a week, as well as deal with all the other challenges that come with wild camping? It's a situation that could prove to be awkward. But it couldn't have been better; we got along so well and were able to laugh a lot which, I found, was a necessity.
Besides dealing with our own tent and camping equipment, the kids did all the other camping jobs for us. They cooked and cleaned up, they did the navigating when we were backpacking, they led the group and made most of the decisions. It was pretty stress free. Well, I take it back, this aspect of the trip was slightly stressful. Especially finding a spot that was discrete. But, we all had to do it, so it got less awkward as the week progressed.
Here are a few photos from Day 1:
This is the team of kids I was with; they were getting all the intro information and basics of what the week would entail. That's why they look bored.
The tents, aka my home for a week:
Our campsite the first and last nights was next to a beautiful river and some falls:
I found myself continually overwhelmed with the beauty of our surroundings. It was magnificent. With all the challenges, it was such a privilege to be able to be a part of this trip. Would I do it again? Yup. I think knowing what to expect and how to be prepared would help a lot.
More to come on the animals we encountered (including the really annoying ones)and the fun activities.