I don’t know anyone else on the expedition, how are the teams allocated?
We know that participants prefer being together of people their own age, and so we allocate the groups based on this, so you will be in a team of people of similar to you. The majority of people who come on our Open Expeditions are on their own so you will quickly make friends. If you are booking with a friend, you can absolutely request to be together on the booking form.
How many spaces are there on each expedition?
Due to social distancing guidelines that are still in place, spaces are limited to 6 in each team, and 4 teams per expedition, so book quickly to get the dates you want!
What should I pack?
We know that this can be overwhelming and so we have created a comprehensive kit list that we will send out to you before the start date so you can make sure that you have everything you need (and only what you need!) We will also send out advice on what types of food to bring.
Can I bring my mobile phone?
Yes – but it should only be used in case of an emergency, and therefore treated as an item of emergency equipment. Please ensure that it is fully charged and is well protected from the elements in a sealable plastic bag.
Can I fail the practice expedition?
No. However, you will need a high skill level to go through to the qualifying expedition and the supervisors must be satisfied that you will be able to complete the expedition safely. But don’t worry about that, as you have expert trainers who are Mountain Leaders. They will teach you all the new skills you need. So, as long as you are engaged and willing to learn, you will be fine.
How is the qualifying expedition assessed?
All of our Trainers are Gold DofE assessors. They assess to the laid down 20 Conditions of the DofE which will be discussed with you on the practice expedition.
How fit do I need to be?
The fitter you are the more you will enjoy your expedition, walking up hill will not seem so much of a slog and you will be able to enjoy the view rather than puffing and panting. The more training you do before your expedition the better. Expeditions are about endurance rather than speed, so walking is great training, and walking with a rucksack is even better. Pop some weight in your rucksack and practice walking with it, gradually increasing the weight as you get fitter. Don’t forget to walk in your expedition boots as this will help to break them in, so that they are comfortable for your expedition.
How hard will it be?
DofE expeditions are supposed to be challenging, so you will find parts of the experience tough. You might even feel like giving up at some point during your expedition. But your teammates will encourage you to get through, and you will do the same for them when they need it. At the end the sense of achievement and good memories definitely outweigh the low points.
I have done my training and practice can I just attend the qualifying expedition?
Yes – although we will need to see evidence that your training and practice have been signed off. A screenshot from eDofE is enough.
I haven’t done bronze or silver, can I come on an open gold practice expedition?
Yes – direct entrants are very welcome. Just please be aware that you might have to work a bit harder than other participants to learn the skills required if you’re starting from scratch.
How do I get there?
Before your expedition we will be in touch with directions. We have planned the expeditions so they are accessible by public transport, however the expedition areas are quite remote so you may have a short walk (or taxi if you prefer) to get you to the start point. You may wish to contact other participants to share transport costs.
How do the expeditions comply with Public Heath England’s advice for social distancing?
We are happy to run expeditions with a few changes in order to keep our Trainers and participants safe during the expeditions.
It must be understood that this is a team event, and it will not be possible to guarantee that all participants remain 2 metres away from each other at all times. The expeditions are outdoors, which is preferable to indoor gatherings. Social distancing is encouraged as much as possible, and we have reduced the maximum numbers on each expedition to support this. Each participant will have their own tent.
After careful consideration, we have decided not to mandate face coverings at all times on expeditions, but participants are able to bring them, and respect the wishes of their teammates if they feel more comfortable with them on. We will also provide enhanced hygiene measures, and we strongly encourage all participants to bring their own hand sanitizer, and use it regularly!