Kandersteg 2017 (1 of 2)

Posted on 20 August 2017

After months of fundraising and preparations, the scouts traveled to Kandersteg, Switzerland for a joint summer camp with the 8th Staenwald Scouts.

Saturday 12th August
The Scouts arrive at Kandersteg! The journey had not gone as smoothly as we could have wished for – heavy traffic in the London area, and an elderly coach which didn’t like going up hills meant that the party had to catch a ferry some 2 hours later than planned – but the time lost was made up between Calais and Kandersteg so that the arrival time at the site was more or less as expected. The tents were already in place, so it didn’t take very long for everyone to get sorted out. Some food was sorted out, and the Scouts had their first ‘experience’ of foreign food – some ‘odd’ yoghurts, and a strange ‘fruit tart’! The site was explored by the Scouts, the camp shop investigated, and the girls announced that the toilets / shower facilities were acceptable!

Sunday 13th August
From the site, we headed for the Sunnbuel cable car to take into the mountains above Kandersteg, and our destination, the Daubensee lake at 2200m. Our path was along part of the Gemmi Pass and by the time we left the cable car, we were in the sun, and it was starting to get hot! The trail was very easy to follow, before it started to go up hill to the Schwarenbach Inn. The Scouts (and some Leaders!) had now started to complain that this wasn’t quite what they had expected, and as the trail onwards to the Daubensee continued upwards, so did the level of complaints! However, we did reach our goal, where some of the Scouts (and leaders) removed the boots and socks, and dipped their feet in the glacial lake. After lunch, it was time for the journey back – the promise of being able to get an Ice Cream at the Schwarenbach silenced the complaints for a time, but after they had been consumed, the grumbling started again! We finally got back to the Cable Car station – it seemed like a good idea to pop a rather large rock in Lottie’s rucsac whilst she went to the loo (much to the amusement of a lady running a refreshment stall!) Unfortunately, Lottie found the rock before we set off, but was sure that it had been put in her bag at the lunch stop, as she had thought that her bag had been a lot heavier on the way back from the Daubensee! By now, the lady running the stall was laughing so much, she was struggling to stay seated on her chair . . . as we left she remarked that we were ‘crazy English!’ Gill met us part of the way back, handing out chocolate and sympathy to the walkers, and even went to the extent of providing Erin and Rose with a basin of water to soak their feet in back at camp! As the evening meal was prepared, some Leaders visited the local hotel for some refreshment whilst the Scouts discovered they still had some energy as they disappeared to play football with some Spanish Scouts.

Monday 14th August
Today, we caught the train to Interlaken – it was another very hot day and many of the Scouts, having learnt the lessons of the previous day, had left their hoodies and jackets back at camp. From the station in Interlaken, we headed off to the High Ropes course at the Ropes Park, where the Scouts tried out the 9 different courses of varying degrees of difficulty – from the ‘Butterfly’ course to the ‘Eagle’ route – with various degrees of success! Thomas had to be rescued having managed (Heaven knows how) to get tied up on one of the challenges, and Chloe found herself stuck on another course, and had to be helped down! After lunch, we walked back into Interlaken – which, after the shade of the forest, was extremely hot! The train back to Kandersteg was very busy, but delivered the Scouts back to Kandersteg and the walk back to the campsite. In the evening, the site’s ‘International Evening’ was scheduled, and we geared ourselves up to go to it – by now, several of the Scouts had swapped neckers, and some of them had even managed to accumulate 2 of them! But the incredibly hot day had clouded over, and a torrential rain storm came over – this did not dampen spirits at all, and a large section of the Camp were out in front of the Chalet, dancing away with the ‘Pinkies’ – the Camp Staff – as the rain bounced off the ground! Our lot (mainly the girls!) joined in, regardless of the weather, having a great time!!

Read the second half of the report here!

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