All day and all of the night
Gilwell Park was the best place to be last weekend as thousands of Explorer Scouts enjoyed the annual activity extravaganza that is Gilwell 24.
Doing a full 24 hours of activities is a challenge in itself but undertaking the task on one of the hottest days of the year is quite another. However, the soaring temperatures proved to be no barrier to those adventure-seekers who were determined to run, jump, fly, climb, swim, speed and laugh their way through the festivities.
There were a number of brand new activities on show this year. The Flying Trapeze team was particularly popular with Scouts lining up to experience the hair-raising mix of airborne adventure and artistry.
Another new favourite was brush boarding. Described as ‘surfing in the dry’ this tested balance and agility and was also a huge hit. The outdoor pool provided the opportunity for budding Jacques Cousteau’s to try out scuba diving with trained instructors.
Alongside classic activities such as climbing, zorbing, quad biking, mountain boarding and much, much more; it was an adrenaline-filled couple of days. Although just walking around the site was exciting enough as bumping into old friends and meeting new people is normal behaviour at Gilwell 24.
And the bigger activities weren’t the only ones leaving impressions. ‘My friends and I must have gone on the bumper cars at least 20 times! They were so fun,’ said Explorer Scout Daisy Brown.
Daisy also enthused about the evening rave. ‘It was really cool. It was packed with Explorers, all of us jumping and dancing to lots of heavy bass songs. It was incredibly exhilarating.
‘It was also nice to sit on the quick (a hill at Gilwell) talking with friends and chatting to new people about anything. Even at 4am there was stuff to do. We never got bored.’
Even though the majority of Explorers were looking forward to sleep and showers by the end of the 24 hours, the event was as fun-filled, entertaining and successful as always. ‘Gilwell 24 lets the young people be in charge of their own lives for the day,’ explained Daisy.
‘It gives us the freedom to do whatever we want when we want which, after all, is the only thing a young person wants to do anyway!’
If you would like to have your own ‘incredibly exhilarating’ experience, why not volunteer for Scouting? There are loads of opportunities for adventure not least at our Scout Activity Centres across the UK.