In late November year 11 Sport, Life and Recreation students began their expedition to get in touch with Mother Nature.
Their journey started at Wapengo Road where students were keen to begin their adventure, Torey Potter was so excited he climbed a tree, later realising it was a tick tree.
The first walk was a struggle for some having to carry everything they required for the three-day camp (tent, food, clothes, sleeping bag and cooking utensils). For Blake Dansey it was a different story, having to carry nine cans of baked beans (one for each meal) which saw him awarded the stinkiest camper.
The students arrived at Picnic Point at 1pm and spent the afternoon soaking up a bit too much sun, catching crabs, surfing and rock climbing. Sad to leave the camp before the first sleep, Shyanne Walker suffered horrific migraines which determined her decision to go home, this action saw her awarded the biggest princess.
It was quite a relaxing night roasting marshmallows and telling scary stories which kept Mr Morgan wide awake during the cold night. Blake Dansey and Quentin Duguid also experienced a rough night with a crash bandicoot clawing his way into their tent to get to Blake’s large food stash. The first night was cold for all, especially Justin Pilgrim who talked up and was very disappointed with his “$45, down from $95 thermal sleeping bag, which could be bearable in conditions as low as minus 15 degrees”.
The second day began with a wide variety of breakfasts to provide the protein for the day’s walk including Nutella on pancakes cooked by Indi Quin and Nicole Barratt, also lots of bacon, eggs, sausages, toast and of course Blake’s baked beans.
Jaydn Spivey, Nick Curtis, Jason Bolitho, Hayden Barry, Andrew Love, Ben Brumby and Torey Potter woke up early to rip up the surf catching some killer waves. After having a good ol’ group sing along courtesy of Mr Morgan’s sexy silver Subaru, the long walk began to Gillards Beach. The walk consisted of a river crossing which was completed in record breaking time by Justin Pilgrim, Jaydn Spivey, Blake Dansey, Matt Knight, Steven Douglas, Andrew Love and Crystal Luobikis who generously carried their own and fellow campers’ bags across the river using large rubber tyres. The walk then continued along a treacherous rock climb with the clumsy Nicole Barratt slipping, only to be saved by the masculine Andrew Love.
A whale’s skull was discovered still evident from the discovery of the carcass during last year’s walk. The last leg was the most difficult walking a long stretch of beach which made the students much more grateful to reach their destination for the second night, Gillards Beach.
Afternoon activities were in full swing with the students becoming in touch with their childhood side, playing games such as 44 home and tips with a special appearance from Shaquille Aldridge and Joe Stewart. Joe Overend had previously purchased fresh oysters for everyone to try, Indi Quin and Torey Potter succeeded in opening the salty snack.
As dusk prevailed, the students bonded and begun digging large holes for hours in the sand in preparation for the game ‘fox holes’. As the game failed by some not being honest, students resulted in roasting more marshmallows and playing Chinese whispers.
Crystal Luobikis kindly offered to cook everybody dinner, adding to the long list of unnecessary help she offered in order to be awarded camper of the year and fire master, Justin Pilgrim kept the flames roaring till after midnight.
Bright and early, the students awoke to the waves crashing on the beach and begun packing up their campsite and cooking up the last of the food. Many of the students decided to toss any unwanted food in order to make their backpacks lighter. By this time students were feeling dirty and tired but they pushed on to complete their last walk from Gillards to Mogareeka. This walk was led by Kiah Joiner and Scott Williams and involved another record breaking river crossing which led to the beautiful Nelson’s Bay where students had a small break before continuing the trek.
Some of the boys such as Blake Dansey, Stephen Douglas and Jaydn Spivey got excited about entering the nude beach “Moon Bay” but to their disappointment there were no nudists on the beach.
At the end of the beach the students had a short history lesson from Mr Langford about the highly significant Aboriginal land we were about to walk and students were asked before entering the track to rub dirt on their left wrist (especially girls) to show respect for their land. This track began with a very steep hill climb where Mr Morgan held onto a rock that everyone had been told not to touch and this resulted in Mr Langford almost being taken out by the rock and was one of the several things contributing to the Russell Coight award. At the end of the track students got to see a stunning view of Tathra where everybody began to get excited about the last few kilometres of the expedition.
Once reaching Mogareeka students chucked off their heavy back packs and relaxed reminiscing about their 22km walk.
All in all the camp was a great success with all students enjoying the time away from everyday life and technology such as mobile phones, computers and Facebook. We would like to thank Mr Fogg for allowing our wonderful camp to happen and to the wonderful company of Mr Morgan, Mr Langford, Ms Hornsby and Joe Overend.