National Raft Race 2009

Friday 26th June

We were all set to go on our adventure down to Lough Dan. Derek (me) had been in the scout hall all day at a birthday party. Exciting stuff! Paul decided to join me and "help" out with the work.

At 6.30ish we set off down to Lough Dan. We arrive under an hour later and set up camp. Midges were out in force. Lough Dan is famous for them, they thrive in the summer months and moist conditions.

We set up camp and lit a fire to try and keep the Midges at bay. It was difficult enough lighting a fire as all the wood was wet. The smoke from the fire kept the midges from completely swarming around us but they were irritating enough.

We headed down to the lake for a paddle. After about an hour we head back and sat around the fire. We chatted around the fire into the night. Some puzzles were argued over, some songs were destroyed, the usual for a first night of camp!

Saturday 27th June

Arise nice and early i.e. loud talking and laughing from 4.30 in the am! The larger (but less number) horseflies were hanging around. We all had breakfast and then brought the spars and rope down towards the lake. The sun was splitting through the heavens and the lake was looking inviting.

90th and 62nd split into 2 patrols and started setting up their rafts. Standard design of a raft but effective nonetheless. 90th scouts came second in their race but had the moral victory as their raft stayed in tact. Most of 62nd raft stayed in tact. After the race the scouts from everywhere all got into the lake.

We would have gotten a prize if Frank had not destroyed one of the prizes. After the event we head back up to site to start on dinner. Chicken fajitas and chicken stir fry etc... We also had some jumbo sausages donated from our neighbour cubs. After that we head back down to the lake and now it was just us so we got in for a swim. Singing camp songs in the "middle" of the lake is quite novel.

We thought we had got away with the lack of midges but we had spoken too soon... Midges are not too fond of direct sunlight but as the clouds started to appear the midges came out. We decide to go into the wet weather shelter for the evening to avoid the midges. So our camp kid of turned into a hostel. We played the usual hostel games.

So we had 4 or 5 people sitting on wet towels, Helen and Sophie having a nutella fight and spoons! We then decided that a game of sharades would be a great idea and it was, some practice is definitely needed if we are to play sharades again. Then it was time for ghost stories before bed.

Sunday 28th June

Everyone got up a little later this morning and it was 9.30 before everyone had surfaced. After breakfast we head down to the lake again for more swimming. The lake was fantastic, we swam for about an hour before we had to get out and clean the site.

At 12ish most of the scouts were collected and we the leaders stayed till 3.30 for the gear to be collected. It was a fantastic camping weekend as usual and roll on next week for the KBCO.