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International Award hike through the Swiss mountains

Posted on: 4th July 2014 | Category: Clubs and societies, Swiss adventures

In the last week of term, six girls took part in the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award practice expedition. To prepare for this adventurous journey the girls had to attend various sessions on route planning, orienteering, cooking, tent pitching, bag packing and emergency first aid. They also participated in a few short hikes to improve their fitness and orienteering skills before setting off on their expedition.

The girls plotted a route of around 40 km starting in Leysin, camping in Les Mosses and finishing in Rossinière. The six girls set off on the Thursday morning with their enormous backpacks full of all their camping gear and provisions for the two days. 9 hours later the girls arrived at camp, a little later than expected as they were so taken with the beautiful scenery that they were stopping every five minutes to take photographs! The girls put up their tents, made themselves dinner over a camping stove and then watched the stars before crashing in their tents.

“I have never seen the sky like this before. It’s amazing! I have never seen so many stars. And satellites! I will remember this for the rest of my life!” Daniela Olavarrieta, grade 11.

The following morning the girls finally made it out from their tents feeling very stiff from the previous day’s walking. After cooking themselves some breakfast they set off for day two of their hike. This part of their expedition took them past Lac Hongrin, over a mountain pass and then down towards the town of Rossinière. Unfortunately due to a small navigational error, the girls added on several kilometers to their hike, but they found their way back and made it, with several blisters and sore legs, to the end of their route. The girls did extremely well and should be very proud of what they achieved. It will be one of their long-lasting memories from Surval I am sure.

“The scenery was incredible and the fields of wild flowers were beautiful. It was a challenge but such a good experience. I loved it!” Paula Torrado, grade 11.

For more photographs, please click here


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