Scouts put to the test at campsite

Falkirk District Camping Competition at Barrwood
Falkirk District Camping Competition at Barrwood

There was scorching sun, there was thunderous rain, there were even elves and dwarves but through it all a group of hardy scouts competed to be the best.

The 10 to 14-year-olds took part in the Falkirk District Camping Competition at Barrwood to try and win a place in the next round of the national event.

For, what for some was their first time, they had to pitch tents, make a camp fire, cook meals and create a series of gadgets and all without any adult help.

The competition tests the capabilities and leadership of the young people while tackling a string of activities.

Adult leaders were always on site but their role was to judge, inspect and be there just in case there were any emergencies.

The five patrols of five and six members from Stenhousemuir, Maddiston and Bonnybridge were named after Lord of the Rings characters so the battle was between the Goblins, Elves, Dwarves, Hobbits and Uruk-Hai.

Full uniform, including kilts or black trousers had to be worn for inspection and all kit had to be carried to the campsites, which were predetermined by the organisers, but after that it was up to the patrol leaders and their teams to decide where to pitch tents, dig a grease pit build a gateway and a flag pole and store their food.

And they had to stick to the menu they had previously created, so two breakfasts, two lunches and a three course dinner cooked over an open fire had to be served up on time and be edible.

They were tested on their knots, first aid, stretcher making, map work, patrol tent pitching and being able to keep their site clean and tidy.

After two days of intense competition first place went to 93rd Braes from Maddiston, second place went to the 27th Bonnybridge boys and 3rd place to the 27th Bonnybridge girls.

Assistant District Commissioner (Scouts) Alan Wallace, said: “This was a tough test for them but we want them to realise how much they can do without leaders telling them.

“They all managed to cook their three course dinner over an open fire despite the pouring rain, which was a real achievement.

“I am very proud of all the scouts. I really hope they had a great time.”