Registered Charity 521362

Event : Superb Scottish Summer Adventure

Eight young people from Blackpool Boys and Girls Clubs Laycock Gate and Mereside, Tommy’s Fleetwood CYP and Blackpool Police Cadets left Lancashire for their Scottlish Adventure on 29th July.

Arriving at Lapwing Lodge Scout Camp we set up camp for night one of the adventure before setting off into Glasgow for the Commonwealth Games. A short subway ride in and we were lapping up the atmosphere and the sights, ‘Clyde spotting’ a ‘selfie’ at the Giant ‘G’ and then to the Emirates Stadium to watch Badminton, where we even got to sit next to a competitor!

The next day we were at Hampden Park, seeing many athletes from all over the commonwealth go for gold in High Jump, Long Jump, Track sprint, hurdles, long distance and almost as exciting... the remote control transit vans that collect the discus’.

After a quick wander around the souvenir shop and a spot of lunch it was time leave civilization and head through the hills to the outback of the Scottish Highlands.

Tents up again on the bank of the lock gates at Gairlochy, it started to become clear what the adventure entailed, no night in the same place, a journey along the locks and canals that made up the Caledonian Canal, taking everything we needed with us and living a back to basics life for the next 4 days.

Day 3 we set off along Loch Lochy and learnt the art of straight line paddling, visited ‘enchanted forests’ and could even use the wind to help sail to our ‘beach’ for the next nights camp. With no running water, a composting toilet and a camp fire to cook dinner it was a well-earned pasta tea all round and hot chocolate before bed.

Day 4, a sunny start on the water before the rain and wind arrived! After lunch came an afternoon of sailing and an ice cream stops before we neared the top of Loch Oich. Tents up again and a sunny evening allowed for a quick swim for those brave enough followed by tea of Jacket potatoes camp fire style, and marshmellow toasting before another night under canvas in midge heaven!

Day 5 was a different start as the sun we had been used to had disappeared and a change in the wind direction made paddling even more of a challenge, but with the team pulling together and many techniques including rafting, and ‘towing’ from the canal towpath, we reached our final destination, Fort Augustus and the banks of the famous Loch Ness!

Nessy spotting and a shower at camp rounded off what had been a hard but enjoyable journey where everyone pulled together and enjoyed the amazing opportunity in the wildest most remote summer adventure we have offered making memories we hope will last a lifetime!

Thanks to Goven Fire Station, Glasgow for letting us park the mini bus during the two days in Glasgow, Matt from Ormside Mill and our local guide Russell from Kushi Adventures for making this great experience possible!

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