Hindleap Warren Year 6 2022
Monday 10th January 2022
We arrived at Hindleap ready for adventure. After a tour of the centre we found our rooms, made our beds and put the crests we designed on our doors.
After a packed lunch, we were ready to start our afternoon. Each group did different activities. One started on the Pentagon, traversing increasingly tricky walkways high above the ground. We were attached with cow’s tails and carabiners to a safety track which meant we could swing in our harnesses in mid air.
Another group did team building. They had to communicate with each other to successfully navigate through a marked area using tyres to make a bridge. Another task involved using ropes and pulleys to guide a canister of water to a podium. After that they went on the Low Ropes, manoeuvring around obstacles including wires and tyres.
The third group got covered in mud on the Low Ropes before tackling the climbing wall. Four children belayed each climber as they took turns to complete challenges; stretching for handholds and pulling themselves up the rock.
Dinner was pizza and chips – delicious - and we sang happy birthday to Reenie.
This evening, we went for a swim and got in our pyjamas ready for hot chocolate and an enormous birthday cake!
We've had a very busy day so hopefully we will sleep well tonight and dream of more escapades tomorrow...
Tuesday 11th January 2022
After pancakes with maple syrup (or chocolate sauce), or toast or cereal or porridge (and for some, more than one of those), we headed out as a whole group for a Forest Adventure. Lead by our amazing guide, Kat, we learned about invasive rhododendrons and how not to fall prey to the mythical Drop Bear. We were going on a bear hunt but we were being hunted!
Then we camouflaged our faces with mud ‘makeup’ and played Hindleap and Seek in a misty beech wood. All the children hid behind trunks or in a ditch and tried to get the nearest to home base without being spotted.
Roaming on, past Pepper Pig Puddle, we sploshed along a muddy brook as it splashed its way down a hill. At the bottom it joined a creek which we followed upstream as it wound its way through steep banks of moss-covered clay. Fallen trees were strewn across our watery path which we had to clamber over or squeeze under.
Finally, we reached a limpid pond of forest water which, according to legend [Kat], makes you younger when you swim in it. So most of us jumped in!
Lunch was baked potatoes with a choice of sauces and toppings.
In the afternoon we split into our groups for further exciting and challenging activities. For the Crate Stack, eight children belay two others while they climb an increasingly tall and wobbly tower. One group used two-person paddle boards to play a series of crazy games in the swimming pool.
Dinner was chicken or vegetable curry. In the evening we wrote postcards home and visited the tuck shop before playing games.
Wednesday 12th January 2022
We woke this morning to clear skies and a rising sun and scrambled eggs and bacon for breakfast. After another day of exciting activities – children’s reports below – we are about to head out to the Campfire and a night walk with head torches.
In the morning we did archery. We all had two rounds and we were shooting arrows at the target. Not many scored a bullseye but Joe C scored two. He got the highest score. The range was indoors and someone shot their arrow in the ceiling. Someone hit the carpet too. It was funny.
In the afternoon we went to the Witch’s Tree. It is an astonishing 500 year old beech tree with lots of stories about it. An old woman called Ethel once lived in the forest in a ramshackle house who could heal people with herbs. People were really superstitious because she had a cauldron and a cat. So they spread the word that she was a witch and so they decided to kill her. They came with pitchforks and carried her away to burn her but just then a mist came and she disappeared. The forest had rescued her because she had taken care of it for ages. She became part of the tree and you can still see her face.
Today we abseiled from a massive tower and it was very high up. You were hooked to two ropes and you could get down however you liked. Even if you walked down holding on to the rope. And every time you made a step you let go of the rope slightly. It was very scary at first but after you come off the platform you are fine coming down. Mrs Davies had two goes and she did well both times. We were all chanting her name.
We also went Pool Boarding and visited the Witch’s Tree. Kat said we had to use all our senses to explore the tree so we all licked it and it tasted of something bitter and dry. It had a sort of crumpled witch’s face in the bark. We went on the boards in pairs and we had to balance out the weight while trying to move in different directions.
In the morning we did rock climbing and we all got to the top and did a high five on the top. Then we did Team Building. The final task was to break out of the prison using a plank and a barrel. We worked as a team and used the plank to climb up and then as a slide to let people out the other side. I was the last one through and had to climb up onto the barrel.
We did archery in the afternoon and I scored 25 points out of thirty and a bullseye on the first round. We played a team game called Save the Goal where you have to hit the same colour as the other team. My team won.
We had hot dogs for lunch and macaroni cheese for dinner and it was very tasty.
Thursday 13th January 2022
A bright and frosty start to our last full day… and waffles for breakfast!
The morning activities included the Team Challenge for each group and the much-anticipated Leap of Faith for two of them. A series of challenges demanded problem solving, physical coordination, logical and lateral thinking and team work. All against the clock.
The Leap was all about nerve: a 10 metre totem pole with a tiny platform on top. Those who made it up there had to stand up on the wobbly summit. But the thrills did not end there. A trapeze bar dangled seemingly too far out of reach.
Inch to the edge. Look straight ahead, not down. Summon your faith in yourself. And leap.
Lunch was chicken or ratatouille with noodles or rice and mozzarella sticks.
In the afternoon we explored the seven square kilometres of Hindleap Warren. First with Ashley and Katie as our guides to introduce us to map reading and then on our own in small groups. We were given a map, a quest to find markers on trees and a set of questions to answer. After the sun set in the south west and dusk began to fall, we returned to base to see that, in a tight battle, team JAFAT had won.
Dinner was bangers and mash with gravy. Then we all took our duvets to a common room and watched Camp Rock with hot chocolate. Afterwards the staff gave prizes to each team member for their individual special contributions to their groups. One bedroom won prizes for being the tidiest and most beautifully behaved children.
Finally, the boys and girls performed their own Camp Rock songs to thank Miss Mackenzie for her tireless work to make Hindleap Warren Year 6 2022 such a fantastic experience for so many children in tricky circumstances.