Presentation Secondary School Thurles
Day School and Boarding School

A day of adventure and survival at Glengarra Woods!

Our TY and LCA students had an eventful adventure day at Glengarra Woods, Cahir, Co. Tipperary, on Friday 16th October 2020
21-October-20
A day of adventure and survival at Glengarra Woods!

Last Friday, the 16th of October, our TY and LCA students set off for a day of adventure and survival in the woods of Glengarra, Cahir, Co. Tipperary. There was much speculation, anticipation and excitement surrounding this outing, as the girls were only told that they were going on a mystery adventure. When morning arrived, everyone was ready and eager to partake in the activities the day had to offer.

The four buses filled with excited and impatient girls, departed from the school shortly after 9 a.m. They all arrived just before 10 a.m., stepping off the buses with their wellies in hand, bags set on their backs, ready to start their adventure. Everyone needed a moment to take in the beautiful surroundings around them, as the golden morning sun was shining through the autumn trees and leaves. The fresh, crisp autumn breeze blew onto their faces as they strolled into the woods, crunching the dry, orange and yellow leaves beneath their feet. A small metal bridge, laying over the glistening river brought everyone over to their meeting place, where they would be doing their activities for the day.

Firstly, the girls were told the plan of action and itinerary for the day. The day would consist of four different tasks, all related to survival and camping. Each of the class groups would compete against each other, being graded on each of the tasks completed, and by the end of the day there would be an overall winner.

The first task was to create a shelter, only from materials the woods had to offer. There were girls running in all directions, fetching loose branches and twigs, and gathering pieces of fern, moss and small rocks. Utilising the woodland materials they gathered, the girls began to assemble their shelters, working as a team to create the best hut. The second task of the day was to assemble a small fire. This involved gathering small stones and rocks, and branches of various sizes. Many of the girls took to the calm and serene river to collect their rocks, taking a few minutes to sit down and take in the peaceful and calming nature of the area. Working as a team the girls constructed their fires, adding pieces of fern and small twigs to keep the fires alight. A teacher then came around with a match and lit the fires, sending small, warm flares of light and heat into the air. Each and every one of the fires were very impressive, and really enhanced the autumnal feeling of the day as all the girls sat around their fires singing and playing songs. The third task involved the aid of the built fires. The girls made a dough of water and flour, and wound the dough around large kebab sticks. They then slowly rotated the bread over the embers of the fire, making sure not to get too close. The simple and wholesome bread-on-a-stick took on a golden crust, while keeping a soft and light texture in the inside. Every one of the girls faces lit up, when they heard what food they would be consuming next, and it wasn't just because of the firelight! Everyone got to enjoy a delicious, gooey and melted 'smore' roasted over the campfires, with the melted chocolate and chewy marshmallow oozing out of the sides of the digestive biscuits. This really embodied the experience of sitting beside a campfire, a 'smore' in hand taking in the stunning, autumnal scenery. The final task of the day was a class trust exercise, of which the girls would go in circle pulling tightly on a rope, and somebody would have to walk the whole way across. This task was definitely a tricky one, but everyone's laughter when someone was walking on the tightrope was contagious.

After a long day of enjoyable activities, the long-awaited verdict was in as to who the overall winners of the day were. It resulted in Naomh Ailbhe taking the crown and being the winners of the day. There were definitely many disappointed faces after the result was announced but they were replaced with smiles when everyone looked back on the fun and enjoyment they had that day. Not only was the day aimed at having fun and taking part in survival and camping activities, it's main purpose was to create a stronger bond between all of the girls in each class.

Without a doubt, each and everyone had a fantastic day of adventure and survival, and I'm sure everyone had a relaxing weekend after the action-packed day!

Written by Ellen Bracken (TY)

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