Silver Duke of Edinburgh International Award

Over the exeat, nine pupils embarked on a fulfilling experience to complete their Silver Duke of Edinburgh International Award.

Adventuring into the forests of Chiang Mai, the pupils completed an eight-hour independent trek across paddy fields and rivers and through jungle. Equipped with a compass, map and walkie-talkie, navigation was definitely more of a challenge for some of us than others!

The trip also saw the group conquering the rapids of Chiang Mai. After a packed training session and practice ‘catching’ swimmers with a rope, we embarked upon a full day and a half of rafting. Despite passing close to branches housing very large spiders, we were still able to enjoy the sight of buffaloes and elephants lounging in the sun and kingfishers flying about. Our training the previous day helped us know how to react when the rapids became large on the second day, and we all managed to stay inside the rafts.

The nights saw Hani Aswandi and Karina Russell cooking up a feast with their impressive culinary skills on the camping stove. Often, our favorite local Thai snack called Beng-bengs followed the meal, serving as a dessert. Before retiring into our tents on the last evening, we bonded around the large campfire which warded away the pesky mosquitoes. Plus, we were treated to a Mars Bar brownie cake made by the talented Mr. Gray and Miss Brooke on the Trangia camping stove.

Wild Planet and Rito deserve recognition for looking after us over the days. We also thank Miss Brooke for looking after us and being our designated photographer. Additionally, a special thanks goes to Mr. Gray for supplying us with a constant flow of Haribo and for seeing us through the long Silver Duke of Edinburgh process.

Poppy Gibson | Sixth Form

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