DofE 2; Cotswolds.

10°C, after a chilly start.

2.1; met my group in the afternoon and took them out for an hour’s walk before dark. They’re quick and have retained a good set of skills. Bronze doesn’t require much from compass skills so this may be a focus. They seem very fit and confident.

2.2: a longish day of 11 miles. The route is fairly simple, punctuated by some fiddly navigation through villages. My group were superb. Their pace was good and navigation errors were few and small. All that despite one nursing injured knees.

2.2: Another slightly long day. R was still struggling with sore knees. She agreed to try a few things that may help. Their school was inclined to pull her out, erring on the side of caution. I decided to try a few tricks. I lent her walking poles and also gave her the job of navigating the tricky forest section. Pain control is more than popping a pill.

From a distance, her gait was natural and in closer, she looked okay. People in serious pain speak with a knot in their voice; she didn’t. Her expression was also neutral so I decided to encourage R to continue. She finished the day.

The whole group finished the day comfortably and in good spirit. Debrief was nice, a chance to heap praise on them all for their efforts. They were so confident and optimistic, a real pleasure to work with.

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