Year 10 camp: 8 days of icebergs for breakfast, hill climbs for lunch, pre-cooked sausages for dinner and a generous side order of sun, wind, rain and snow.
Our last group of Year 10 students returned from camp on Friday 20th. This wrapped up two weeks of back to back 8 day camps, which for many, will be a highlight of their time at the college. Students spent half their time at Huxley lodge at the head of Lake Ohau, and the other half based at Glentanner near Aoraki Mount Cook.
The three day tramp from Huxley, along with a 1000m vertical climb up 'Mt Mason' in the middle day, proved to be the ultimate challenge for many. In a post camp survey, the majority of students identified this as their biggest challenge on camp.
The students were then asked to describe one thing they had learnt about themselves on camp. It's answers like those shown below, that I believe really show the worth of camps like this.
"That I have a lot of mental stamina"
"I learnt that all I need is the right mentality to be able to push on"
"I learnt that I can cook better than I thought"
"I really am capable of eating eight slices of buttered bread at once"
"That I love the outdoors"
"That I can do it"
"I can push through the tough times"
Students in Year 9 or below would do well to take these pearls of wisdom offered up as advice for future students before they head off on camp.
"Don't give up, just keep charging forward like a bulldozer and plow on."
"Tent with people who are going to sleep, whether they are your closest friends or not. Also, you can't go wrong with a tea brew when it's cold."
"Don't give up"
"Pack wisely don't take more gear than needed, take the right gear"
It is a real privilege sharing this experience with such a wonderful bunch of students. It would not have been possible without the huge collection of staff and parents which gave up their time to help out and make this possible. A huge thank-you to all who did this. As one final challenge I asked the students to summarise their camp experience in one sentence. A selection of these are below.
"Amazing scenery with a great atmosphere"
"The camp for me was interesting, challenging, and exhausting"
"A challenging experience that was enjoyable"
"Camp was good fun, grow stronger friendships and you enjoy yourself"
"There was a lot of walking and eating, and there was a lot of fun with the class"
"Fun, challenging, hard work"
"Amazing experience so much fun, friendships stronger"
"My camp experience was a good way to talk to people I never would have otherwise"
"It was fun and a good experience to get into a totally different environment"