Forest Lake Fieldcraft Hike

Late last year, five cadets, accompanied by two dedicated adult leaders from Forest Lake Squadron, had a memorable experience undertaking a 20 km hike as part of the Duke of Edinburgh Award.

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is an exciting new challenge available to cadets in Queensland Group, with the first group of eight participants embarking on a journey of personal growth, development, and adventure. The Award is a youth programme founded in the United Kingdom in 1956 by the Duke of Edinburgh, which has since expanded to 144 nations worldwide.

Under the guidance of the Air League’s Queensland Award Leader, Squadron Captain Biggs, five of these promising individuals planned, prepared, and participated in a 20km hike amidst the vast expanse of a 3000km cropping farm located 42 km outside the picturesque town of Dalby. 

As they started their hike from the farmhouse, the cadets were greeted with a 3000-acre cropping farm and an exceptionally hot day.  Throughout the expedition, the cadets encountered numerous obstacles that tested their skills and teamwork. 

They navigated through irrigation channels, walked along the rocky creek, and conquered steep, slippery inclines of dam walls. These physical challenges not only strengthened their physical fitness but also fostered a sense of self-belief and the capacity to overcome hurdles. They learned in a very practical way about self-care, hydration and resting in shaded areas.

As daylight transitioned into night, the cadets gathered around the campfire, eagerly sharing stories, laughter, and creative hiking meals. The adults provided guidance, sharing their knowledge of survival skills, first aid, navigation and safety in nature. The second night was the most memorable event of the camp, with a massive storm hitting the campsite and the cadets seeking shelter in the farmhouse for the rest of the night. 

The cadets would like to thank the adult leaders for their unwavering commitment to safety and growth. Their dedication and expertise were instrumental in making this remarkable experience possible.

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