The Phoenix Challenge 2016

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Posted by Conor Crowley | Posted in 2nd Scouts, 47th Scouts, 6th Scouts, Group News | Posted on 17-08-2016 20:49 | 0 comments

On Thursday morning a Patrol of 7 of our Scouts will embark on a journey to the Mount Mellerary Scout Centre in Cappoquin Co. Waterford to take part in the National Campcraft competition, The Phoenix Challenge.

4 days of healthy campcraft competition, team and skill challenges, special projects and a cooking competition.

On both Friday and Saturday the Patrols participate in an action packed programme of team and skill challenges such as building large pioneering structures, rafting, initiative challenges, emergency situations, mapping projects and many more. During the evenings a mixture of fun activities (such as campfires and themed trade fairs) and special projects (such as debating or environmental projects) take place.

The theme for the Phoenix Challenge 2016 is ‘The age of Reconnaissance, Discovery, and Exploration.’ The theme, like other symbols in Scouting, is about helping encourage an atmosphere of fun and adventure.

This is a huge undertaking for any group, firstly to qualify from your county shield competition and secondly to plan, train and organise a patrol over the summer months and fit in annual camp

For the first time the Douglas & St. FinBarres Scout Group is putting forward a patrol into this competition. It is a credit to the Scout leadership team and to the loyalty of the Scouts involved that we have managed to pull this one off.

As Group Leader it was a massively proud moment to see the Scouts on their last training session in the hall on Tuesday night. I wish them all the luck in the world and no matter what happens they have done this group proud.

I want to also take a moment to thank the devotion and dedication of Eoghan, Vickie, Evan and the rest of the Scout leadership crew who have given so many hours to this event.

By the time the closing ceremony comes around at 15:00 on Sunday all the hard work will have been worth it

Yours In Scouting

Conor Crowley
Group Leader

South Patrol - Phoenix 2016 - Douglas & St FinBarres Scout Group

South Patrol – Phoenix 2016 – Douglas & St FinBarres Scout Group

Camp 2016 – What else did we get up too (part two)

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Posted by Conor Crowley | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 24-07-2016 9:00 | 0 comments

And now for some more stories of our adventures on Camp 2016

Monday July 11th

Monday morning came and it was time to pack up and depart our house, Borluut; it was perfect for our needs for the last 10 days and will be missed. Packing took most of the morning; getting 38 youth members and 14 adults sorted along with their gear wasn’t the easiest of tasks.

By lunchtime we were almost ready; we had our final dinner at the house and a major clean up operation went into action. We left our house tidy and as clean as the day we arrived. JEKA agreed!

That afternoon we departed and we decided to finish our time in Austria by taking one more mad ride on the Wally Blitz Mountain Coaster and then headed to Freischwimmbad Bach/Elbigenalp, a great outdoor pool and slide. That evening it was time to board the bus for one of our long journeys… but none of the youth members were sure exactly where!

After about 4 hours we stopped off Ulm, Germany, for our sandwiches and refreshments. Indiana Jones was the film of choice during the first part of the journey. After a break of about an hour it was back out onto the A8 of the Autobahn & Fr. Ted episodes were lined up on the DVD player in the bus.

Everyone settled in for a night on board Mannings Coaches and the surprise that was to come

Tuesday July 12th

By about 2am we stopped again to stretch the legs and have a loo break in a services in Siegburg, Germany; There were still some excited people on board but most did sleep for a few hours.

At 6am as there was silence on the bus (almost everyone was asleep) we had made good time through the night and had arrived in The Netherlands. With the curtains drawn most people hadn’t realised it but we were sitting the empty car-park of our surprise destination – we let them sleep some more…

We woke everyone on the bus around 8am for breakfast on board and welcomed everyone to Walibi-Holland; a theme park in Biddinghuizen, The Netherlands. Attractions inside included the Speed of Sound, El Condor, Xpress, Goliath and Robin Hood roller coasters!!! It was going to be an exciting day!!!!

What a day it was – the Scouts, Venture Scouts and Scouters all went in their own groups and spent from 9:45am until almost 4pm in the park. Taking part in what was on offer, the roller coasters, the attractions, the games, the restaurants and the souvenir shops.

After we got back on the bus we had a less than 2hr drive to our final location. The town of Breda. Everyone was wrecked but happy. We checked into our hotel (yes…. we were in a hotel) and once we got dinner out of the way it was relax and sleep time as the 2nd last night of camp 2016 began.

Wednesday July 13th

After we had breakfast and checked out of the hotel the final journey on mainland Europe started as we headed to the Hook Of Holland. With all bags packed we as Scouters waited for the ‘I can’t find my uniform’ stories; it was our pleasure to say there wasn’t any! Off we went and headed for the port.

By about midday we were sitting in the Stena Ferry Terminal in Holland having our lunch, passports in hand and were ready to walk onto the boat and head to Harwich.

The ferry to Harwich did leave later than planned and when we disembarked at nearly 9pm that night we hit the road straight away to try to make our connecting ferry in Holyhead.

All the parents now know we got delayed due to the late disembarkation and got stuck in major roadwork detours but eventually we did arrive home safe and sound on Thursday July 14th

…. Thank You ….

A massive thank you to everyone who had a part in Camp 2016;

Thank you to our drivers Tommy Manning & Michael Coughlan for all you did for us over the 2 weeks.

Huge thanks to all our youth members, you did us proud and represented our group well.

A massive thanks to the leadership team both at home and on camp for their support, energy and enthusiasm throughout Camp 2016

Enjoy your summer and don’t forget to support our Phoenix Campcraft Competition team over the next few weeks.

Yours In Scouting
Conor Crowley – Outgoing Group Leader

Camp 2016 – What else did we get up too? (part one)

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Posted by Conor Crowley | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 23-07-2016 20:41 | 0 comments

Well we were so busy on Camp 2016, having one of the best camps we’ve ever been on, we only got the blog up to Monday July 4th!

So what else did we get up too??

Tuesday July 5th

This was our big day out – one day on each camp we plan a big day out, to a major attraction or a big city. This year we went to Zugspitze (highest mountain in Germany). It was a very early start for the house and we were on the road by 6:35am to get an early train. We arrived in Germany and to the Zugspitze cog wheel train. The Bavarian Zugspitze Railway took us to the Zugspitzplatt, from where the Eibsee cable car takes passengers to the top. It was an incredible site to behold once you took the final few steps to the top and out on to a huge viewing platform. Check out our photos and some videos of the day on our Facebook page.

There was great photo opportunities and a chance for some snacks at the top and we stayed for over an hour. We also had some fun on the snow before we headed back down!!!

We took a drive to the town of Füssen, which is about 5km from the Austria/German border to spend the afternoon shopping and getting lunch.

That evening back at the house a meeting was called where the next activity was explained; a 2 day overnight hike!

Wednesday July 6th & Thursday July 7th

Wednesday morning everyone boarded the bus, packed for a major hike and an overnight up a mountain. Everyone was brought to the Tannheim valley to the foot of the Tannheim mountains near Reutte. A stunning lake district is where the group began their hike. An unbelievable experience for our Scouts and Venture Scouts where after a few hours of hiking they came to their mountain hut and stayed overnight.

The mountain hut isn’t a fair description of the accommodation that night; these are large cabins dotted around the mountain, staffed by guides and provide shelter, bedding and hot meals for hikers. We had a prearranged booking in our hut where we had dinner Wednesday night and breakfast on Thursday morning before heading back down the other side of the mountain and to the town of Stanzach.

The hike was a serious one, some very steep descents too but everyone helped each other along and from the most experienced hiker to the newest scout it was something they’ll never forget.

That night, even though some people were exhausted we took everyone to Schützengilde Stanzach for our evening activity. It was an indoor shooting range with pellet rifles. 47th Scout Kim turned out to be a serious marks-woman with a 93% accuracy rate… watch out world!

Friday July 8th

Friday was what we called our ‘local day’ or ‘time out day’; The Scouts and Venture Scouts (and a few leaders) had a well earned sleep in that morning.  Everyone headed for a kick around down on the local pitch, then we had an easy lunch and finally as a treat headed into Füssen for shopping for the afternoon.

After dinner we had been invited by the locals of Elmen to a traditional Austrian Tyrolean music night. It all started around 7.30pm with a small band parading around the streets of our local village. We joined everyone in the newly build school hall about an hour later for live traditional Austrian music and dance. It was a great way to finish off a very relaxed day

Saturday July 9th

Having had beautiful sun and temperatures ranging to the high 20’s so far we woke to find water in the form of droplets from atmospheric water vapor seemed to have fallen from the sky overnight; This didn’t last too long and while it was a cloudy day it was a break from the heat we had been having. Our Venture Scouts headed off Canyoning and our Scouts went swimming in the very nice pool in Reutte.

It was good for the Venture Scouts to have an activity to themselves, gave them a little more freedom and I’m sure the Scouts enjoyed the few hours away from the Ventures too! The canyoning turned out to be a highlight for a number of our Venture Scouts and was an activity they would have liked to have done again. The took a very short hike to the location and got stuck in, there as some caving, abseiling and canyoning all rolled into the one activity.

That evening back in Elmen it was onsite games in the local pitch along with board games and card games back in the house.

Sunday July 10th

On the Sunday morning our Scouts, Venture Scouts & Scouters had a unique challenge… to make it across Austria’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge; 200-meter long bridge that crosses Höhenbach Canyon at an incredible 110 meters above ground. After a short 20 minute walk to the bridge it was all across, some closed their eyes and did it, others enjoyed the unbelievable views and scenery from such a height before coming back down and boarding the bus once more.

After the short stop in Holzgau we all headed to Haiming where everyone got an opportunity to go White Water Rafting. It was one of the hottest days we had on camp and the water activities were a welcome distraction. We’ve some great shots that we’ll put up online in the next few days.

A very relaxed final night in Austria was then had. We had a late dinner, played card games, streamed the Euro2016 final and some of us watched an incredible lightening storm. We believe it was the Lechtal Valleys way of saying goodbye to it’s Irish visitors

Camp 2016 wasn’t over yet; more of our adventures from when we left Austria still to come….

A funny one…

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Posted by Enda | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 15-07-2016 18:38 | 0 comments

We’d like to share a funny one with ye!

Anyone who went to camp, might remember that a week or two before camp we started stressing to bring raingear!  The forecast at that stage was:

Forecast before Camp

Wow weren’t we lucky!!!!

Always remember that the forecast can be wrong.  In this case, it was VERY VERY wrong (thankfully!!!!)

Austria 2016 – Camp Photographs….

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Posted by Enda | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 14-07-2016 17:41 | 0 comments

Hi All,

Camp is now truly over – and to distract myself from this thought, I’m going to move on to photo’s!

Within the next week or so, we’ll try to have a montage of pic’s up – like we do most years.  We know that lot’s of you took pictures this year – and we’d like to put the best of them into the montage.

PLEASE share with us your pics!!

To get them to us, you can use the form by clicking HERE.

You will need a password to upload pic’s – it’s elmen (all small letters).

IF you have any problems using this form, you can also email your snaps to:  pics2016@douglasscouts.ie (This address is only for uploading pics – it is not used for general email.)

We’re really looking forward to getting your pictures – get uploading fast!!

Regards,

Enda.

 

Camp 2016 IMPORTANT TRAVEL UPDATE

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Posted by Enda | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 13-07-2016 23:10 | 0 comments

Hi All,

The coach has encountered some Road works and has been delayed.

It now seems very unlikely that we will NOT make the 02:30 ferry from Holyhead.

Stena have Co firmed that they do have space for us on the 9am ferry ex Holyhead & this will have us in Dublin shortly after midday.

We would now ESTIMATE our arrival at Frankfield to be about 4pm.

Hope this doesn’t inconvenience anyone too much. ..

 

Any further updates will be posted here.  Please pass the message to anyone who might miss this.

Enda.

Camp 2016 – Monday July 4th

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Posted by Admin | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 08-07-2016 14:44 | 0 comments

Written by Jack M.

We got up early in the morning to take a trip from the bus in Elmen to Bach to rock climb and mountain bike. The group was split up in two. One group to go mountain biking and the other to go rock climbing. The group rock climbing met up outside the instructor (Hoops) office. He taught the group how to equip the helmets and harnesses. Hoops then walked us over to a place called the climbing garden. The climbing garden was a huge wall on a path with five ropes attached to the wall. Hoops showed us how to belay and how to climb up the wall. 

While the first group was wall climbing the other group was cycling around a huge and beautiful cycling road. It started with us leaving a large green field we then went down a path with beautiful houses and amazing flowers. After going down that path we went on to cycle by the river. The river looked fantastic and had a distinct blue colour from bits of glaciers going in to it. We came by a unique bridge that felt amazing to cross by going under the shade. We then came into a row of fields with little huts filled to the brim with wood. We then cycled back to bike rental where we gave back the bike. The bus picked us up and brought us back to Elmen. We where wrecked but we had an amazing day.

Camp 2016 – Saturday & Sunday

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Posted by Admin | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 06-07-2016 12:05 | 1 comments

Blog posting by Ciara B. & Shane K.

We arrived early Saturday morning and were split into our rooms. We put everything in them, sorted the beds, and then had a meeting in the dining room. We were told about duty patrols and the ventures went first in preparing the tables and serving breakfast. After breakfast, we had free time to sort ourselves out and have a nap after the long travel. We then went on a tour of the village so we knew where everything was. We were sent inside to have lunch and get bags ready for the first activity. We went to an amazing swimming pool for the afternoon. There was a massive slide and a salt water pool as well as the main pool. We spent two hours there and then returned back to the hostel for dinner. After dinner (prepared and served by the duty patrol). After dinner,we went to bed as we had to be up quite early in the morning.

We did our usual routine, got up, had breakfast and got on the bus.Once we got there it was straight to business we got off the bus and started heading up the Everest shaped mountain, the trip was long and roasting at first until we stopped and split, the ventures went up further to one of the peaks and the scouts stopped and went back to the bus after a while.The walk to the peak was strenuous but we were all incredibly relieved once we got to the peak and the trip back was a lot easier than the way up

Addition by Conor Crowley – Group Leader

Just to add to the fine reporting by the Scout & Venture Scout above…

On Sunday July 3rd we headed off to the town of Bach and parked the bus at Jöchlspitz where we got chair lifts up the side of the huge mountain, incredible views of the Lechtal valley and its surrounds. The Scouts, Ventures and some Scouters then headed off up the Mountain and once they reached a summit them descended on foot. A huge achievement for a lot of of younger youth members.

As an added bonus then on the way home we brought everyone to WallyBlitz, Coaster Elbigenalp; a coaster that you sit into and are dragged by cable to the top of the mountain and then you’re let go and down you go! It sounds as good as you think.

Camp 2016 first posting!!

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Posted by Admin | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 05-07-2016 6:05 | 0 comments

Five days into Camp 2016 and only having the opportunity to post the first blog. We’ve been on the go with activities since we got here last Saturday. 

The journey began on Thursday 30th at the Frankfield church and we made it off on time (almost)  and headed to Dublin Port. We boarded the Stena Line ferry for the short trip to Holyhead. We arrived in Holyhead at midnight, disembarked and began the journey through the night to Harwich.

The Scouts on board were encouraged to sleep, sleep was not on their agenda but excitement was!! The journey across the UK that night took around seven hours and as dawn broke, as two loo breaks were completed we got to the port of Harwich. We boarded our second Stena Line ferry and set sail for the Hook Of Holland. Breakfast and lunch on board and the scouts entertained themselves with card games and a few even managed to catch up on some hours sleep.

We disembarked the ferry in Holland and had time to take our group photo (see our Facebook page) and settled into the bus journey that lay ahead as we set our sights on Elmen, Austria

Friday night and into Saturday morning was our journey through the Neatherlands, down through Germany overnight and arrived in Elmen, which is t far inside the Austrian border around 6:30am

The journey, whilst sounding long, boring and tedious was made someone easier by the fact our coach is very comfortable. With two TV’s, Air Conditioning, toilet, cold storage for water, WiFi while in Ireland and the U.K. and each seat comes with a three pin socket there hasn’t been a reason to complain. Our drivers Tommy Manning & Michael Coughlan are true professionals and get on well with the youth members and adults alike.

Our accommodation is a very nice building, kitchen, toilets, showers and a number of bedrooms ranging from 4 dorm to 8 dorm. All settled in well.

The rest of the blog will be completed by the youth members on camp, which will give you a real, genuine feel and true experience of what’s going on.

Yours In Scouting,

Conor Crowley – Group Leader

Less than a week to go!!!!

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Posted by Enda | Posted in Camp 2016 | Posted on 23-06-2016 19:31 | 0 comments

Hi All,

Less than a week now until we depart!!

Some final information is in this post…

Gear List

  • FULL UNIFORM.  We will depart in full Uniform.  No Exceptions!  Now is a great time to check you have all parts of your uniform.  You will NOT be travelling without a full uniform!
  • Spare neckerchief.  While not essential, would be useful as a spare, or if you wanted to swap yours etc.  (You must always have a Douglas / St. FinBarres neckerchief, so if you’ve only one with you, then you can’t swap it if the opportunity should arise).
  • While we hope to have great weather, we are nearly guaranteed to have the other sort too! (my fault).  It is VITAL that everyone has WARM CLOTHES  (coat, huddy, gloves etc) and also rain gear.  We will NOT be stopping activities due to weather. If you don’t have the necessary clothing, it’s possible that you’ll miss out on some activities.  You have been warned!
  • Hiking boots will be necessary.  Remember too that it’s VITAL to “wear in” hiking boots.  If you need to or choose to buy new boots, you MUST have them “worn in” before camp or you’ll be VERY uncomfortable in them!
  • Water bottle – At least 1 litre – possible 2 x 500ml’s would be a good idea.
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Pillow (if you like.  Inflatable maybe? For the journey)
  • Pillow Case.  (There should be pillows in the chalet but you will NOT be able to use them without a pillow case that you bring yourself.
  • Track-ends/Leggings
  • Warm Sweater & coat
  • T-Shirts
  • Changes of Underwear
  • Plenty of Socks
  • Warm Nightwear
  • Change of Shoes or Runners
  • Shorts & Trousers
  • Raingear – Waterproof Jacket & Trousers
  • Warm Hat & Gloves
  • Wash Gear – Toothbrush & paste, Shower Gel, Shampoo, Comb
  • Towel
  • Swimming costume & hat
  • Tea-Towel & Dish Cloth
  • Sun hat
  • Sun cream & Lip save
  • Torch & Spare Batteries
  • Rucksack or similar type hold all
  • Day trip bag

Just for information, there are NOT clothes washing facilities in the chalet.  As far as we know there are no launderette facilities anywhere in the vicinity – so either have enough of clothes for the duration or be prepared to do a hand wash yourself!

The two types of bag are important and worth considering.  The main rucksacks will be going onto the coach before we leave Cork, and will not be available again until we get to Austria.  So everything needed for the journey will have to be packed in the day bag.  We would recommend that this would at least contain:

  • Change of clothes
  • Washgear & towel
  • Water Bottle

You do NOT need to bring cutlery, ware etc, as these will be provided at the hostel.

Penknives will NOT be needed at this camp.

Travel info

  • We will be meeting at Frankfield Church at 14:30 on Thursday 30th June.
    • We will then travel to Dublin, Dublin to Holyhead, Holyhead to Harwich and then Hook of Holland to Austria.
  • On the return, we hope to be back at Frankfield Church at around 10:00 on Thursday 14th July.  Keep an eye on the website & social media – we’ll post there if there are any changes.

Money for the Journey

As previously discussed, a SMALL few pounds sterling should be brought.  This will enable people to buy a drink or whatever, during the service stops along the way.  In addition, a small few Euro’s might also be handy for service stops once we get to Continental Europe.

Camp Blog

As in previous years, we will hope to have a blog telling you what we’ve been up to, here on our website.  The caveat as ever, is that we’ll be reliant on finding internet to post the blog!  Be patient with us….

Any Queries

PLEASE contact us at any stage with any queries you might have.  We love to help!!