Reigate Grammar School DofE

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RGS Gold canoe expeditions Summer 2014

Two pioneering canoe groups from Reigate Grammar took an adventurous journey down the River Wye and Severn for their Gold canoe training and qualifying expeditions.  They found it rewarding and challenging, on one occasion paddling over 45km in one day! They became a superb team together and the photos show what a great adventure they had.  Well done all and I hope this encourages others to take up the amazing opportunity of canoeing for their DofE award scheme which is available as an expedition option for Bronze, Silver and Gold award groups.

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New term…

Please note that DofE notices and correspondence will now come via your student school email account: check this regularly and add it to your phone.  This blog will continue to be used for expedition dates, reviews, notes on skill, sport and volunteering and training so check back for updates! Thanks. SAC

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Gold DofE qualifying MidWales August 2014


Nearly 50 RGS students successfully completed their Gold qualifying hike 16-20 August in Mid Wales.  A blustery storm warranting a severe weather warning for high wind started this expedition on a rather inclement note.   3 groups were re-routed below the summits for the first day due to gusts of 50mph forecast on a high route that would take them above 700m for most of the day on an exposed ridge.  After the first day the weather was cool and breezy and a bit showery but ideal for walking and the groups rose to the challenge and performed well.  Staff were most impressed with their positive spirit throughout the expedition and they were an especially pleasant and fun year group to assist through the challenge.  Well done all!  Thanks to all the staff and external leaders and assessors for your help with this expedition.

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Silver training expedition July 2014


68 students trekked 30 miles over the North Downs from Dorking to… Dorking!  The groups went via the North Downs (chalk) towards Guildford, camping at the stunning Chantries camp.  They then crossed the clay vale to the extensive Heaths and woods of the Greensand Hills (Greensand) to Peaslake and Holmbury St Mary to a farm camp site under the south slope.  The final day saw them trekking over the summit of Leith Hill back towards Dorking, finishing at North Holmwood.  Weather was good, warm and dry and most groups avoided the worst downpours on the last day, finishing around midday.  Well done all, good hiking with most groups improving their navigation.

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Silver qualifying expedition June 2014


Silver qualifying expedition to South Downs: 76 students completed this expedition in sunny warm conditions on a relatively easy route navigationally-speaking from Lewes to Amberley.  They performed well, camp craft improved throughout and departure on the last day was efficient.  The route includes some really beautiful bits of the South Downs. Many  thanks to the students who always make this a most enjoyable expedition.

Remember you need to send in a REPORT and complete all parts of edofe and submit all sections for approval to complete your Silver Award: please do this before the end of term. Students wanting to enrol in Gold should look out for notices early next term in September.


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Gold practice expedition June 2014


South Wales, Dan Yr Ogof: 4 groups (a small trip) set off on 4 days of training in mostly glorious weather.  Routes included the east and west side of the valley, the shake holes above the camp providing excellent micro-nav practice on the second day.  Thereafter, on day 3 groups set off over the Fan Hir and Garreg Las Black Mountain Ridges and descended into the Black Mountain camp site which has amazing views of the mountains.  The final day saw groups trekking back to Dan Yr Ogof via the scarp slope.  Navigation was generally OK, though some errors highlighted the need to focus on routes carefully, even in sunny weather.  Had the cloud been down some groups would have had difficulties, so map and compass work still needs your full attention folks. Plenty of food and water is also needed, some forgot the basic requirement to feed and hydrate to keep going effectively and safely.  Groups performed very well and were a fun bunch, so well done you!

A huge thanks to all the RGS staff: Miss Hancock, Mr Welch and Mr Newman and a special big thanks to our external leaders Paul and Becs and Pete and John.


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Expedition preparation and meetings through summer half term

There are 3 big expeditions this half term and more through to August.  Of course students must focus on exams in the next few weeks but they will also need to have an eye on preparing for their expeditions and attending meets below to avoid a mad rush before departure.   Safety is critical and group preparation is vital to avoid problems.

Please check any forthcoming emails and letters carefully to understand final meet dates (listed below).  Final meets are very important to go over instructions and points of safety as well as issue news of any changes and issue maps etc. So attendance is mandatory.  If you have exams during the meet please make it a priority to see Mr Collins asap regarding another meet.

L6 GOLD meet Geog Room Tuesday June 10 4-5.30pm : to do final prep for BOTH training and qualifying expeds. (for those going to Exeter on Tuesday please meet on Wednesday Geog room 1.10pm prompt – it will take most of lunchtime to get through the required pre-expedition briefing.) Failure to attend a pre-expedition meet will mean you will be withdrawn from the expeditions.

5th form Silver qualifying: no meeting (all kit has been checked, maps issued. )  Meet Lewes Station at allocated time Sunday 29 June. 

4th Year July training: we will meet after exams on Tuesday 24 June 4-5.30pm 

Please remember that RGS dofe expeditions require students to carry their kit.  On expeditions there is no provision for students to off-load kit and have it transported to campsites.  This is a safety matter as well as a condition of the dofe, you must have all items of expedition equipment on your person throughout the expedition.  You must be fit enough to do the expedition and this means being able to carry your rucksack.  Those not fit to travel or carry their own kit will, regrettably, have to postpone the challenge for another time.

Please refer to the KIT LISTS here online while packing.

Contact if you have any questions about forthcoming expeditions.

Students might wish to download the OS Locate app on their phones? Phones must be used sparingly on expeditions and ONLY for communication between staff and groups.  Batteries must be conserved to report any difficulties and get staff help.





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