Saturday, 14 July 2012

Edenderry Scouting In June...

One of the problems of keeping a blog, is keeping it current. Sadly the old grey matter seems to be dying back a little as I am struggling to remember what the sections have been up to for the month of June!

The cub pack took a hike up Croghan Hill, a local extinct volcano with two of their programme scouters and a guest visit from the Group Leader. It was a lovely day, warm and dry, just right for a hike. Rather than scale the merry heights by the direct route, we went around the back of the hill passing St Patrick's Well.
While we stopped for a short break and a few moments examination of the trinkets left at the well, a local lady walking with her dog stopped to cool off, splashing the water onto her face. She told us that this water will not boil, suggesting that we take some home to try for our selves!

Having used this opportunity to replenish our energies it was onwards and upwards, through fields filled with nosey cattle who decided to accompany us on our way. Some of the cubs found this somewhat alarming, as our new bovine friends became quite insistent at times! Eventually the top of the hill was scaled and a picnic taken on the very top. This provided an opportunity to pull out OS Map 48 and survey the surrounding area, identifying the relevent features as visibility was simply amazing.

Orientation proved a little more difficult than expected, due to what appears to be large iron deposits within the hill itself, which played havoc with the magnetic needle of the compass. This gives some credence to the theory that Croghan Hill is in fact a neolithic burial site...

The Scout Troop were also out and about in June, camping in Rahin Woods near Edenderry thanks to Coilté. This was a one night standing camp that took place on one of the wettest, windiest Saturdays known to mankind! Unlike our poor comrades who were camping out at Ardgillan Castle, Co Dublin  we had the advantage of the tree canopy to protect us, they unfortunately were at the mercy of the elements resulting in conditions so dangerous that the camp was more or less desserted on the Sunday.

The scouts learned a thing or two that weekend, including how to prepare for bad weather! This involved pitching the tents in a semi-circle and erecting a shelter over their doors to provide protection from the teeming rain expected. Luckily this didn't really effect us until well after dark, when it finally broke through the canopy while we finished our washing up after dinner!

June has been a cold month and the Bank Holiday weekend really gave us good reason to light our fires. We're lucky that we have a wet weather shelter available to us, so we spent time enjoying one another's company, telling yarns and generally having fun despite the appalling weather conditions experienced by the rest of the country! Ordinarily we'd take a night hike around the forest, which provides a whole new experience of familiar territory, but not this time. We took a short hike during the day, thus avoiding  the worst of the rain. This is why keeping an eye on the weather forecast is so very important...

One of the funniest things that happened was on the Sunday when the Group Leader lost her footing and slipped down a mud bank at great speed on her back, all the while holding the blue camping gas cooker safely above the ground. A sight for sore eyes!

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