Today was my annual Welsh trip to visit our year 6 children in action during their Call of the Wild residential in the Brecon Beacons. The weather could not have been better, clear blue skies, sun and a light breeze. I joined the children at Dinas Rock where they were about to take part in rock climbing and gorge walking. In front of me I could see a huge rock face and behind me I could here the roar of the river as it plunged down the gorge.
The children were all well, happy and having a fantastic time. There were no complaints about the food and the children claimed to have all all gone straight to sleep the night before, instead of talking and staying up until the early morning. They all had great things to say about the trip and, especially the instructors. Mrs Berry, Mis Wright and Mrs PM all looked tanned, but perhaps a little tired(I came armed with chocolate to boost their energy levels).
The day went brilliantly, the climbing saw all our children take on the really big challenge of conquering a shear rock face and absailing down, it was great to hear the encouragement of the other children as each child took on the daunting task of finding a route to the top, then leaning back above the void and bouncing back down to earth at a 90 degree angle to the wall.
Gorge walking was wet and wild, it all started with a jump off the bridge into an icy mountain pool and ended with repeated jumps off a 4 metre high waterfall into an icy mountain pool. Between these two highlights the children picked their way between boulders, scrambled over waterfalls, waded through pools, climbed steep gullies and traversed rock faces . Again, it was fantastic to see the children encouraging each other to take on and meet the challenges this sort of activity presents.
After every climb had been climbed and every waterfall jumped a group of tired, happy children boarded the buses and headed home up a steep track that brought us half way up a mountain to the converted farm that is home for the week. Clothes were hung to dry in the evening sun, drinks were drunk and hot showers had. Soon the hillside rang to the sound of happy voices as a bit of free time was enjoyed outside before moving into the dining room for a good old curry and some sponge pudding.
“Today was amazing” I was told time and again by the children – I fully agree, today was amazing because the weather, countryside, activities children and the staff were amazing.
Well done to you all.