The scouts of the 3rd Cork (St. Patrick’s) have spent the past week on Summer Camp at Clonbur, Co. Galway. Based at Peterburg Outdoor Educational Centre, the scouts enjoyed a host of various activities both organised by the centre and supplemented by the leaders own programme. It was the third camp by the 3rd Cork at the centre since the millennium camp of 2000.
Speaking with the Scout Leader John Maher who was on his 23rd summer camp, John said “Summer camp for starters is the highlight of the scouting year for any scout troop and I must say Clonbur always holds something very special for me” When I asked John if there was any camp that stood out over the years he said “Non really, every camp is special in its own way, the laughs the trills and the scouts attending each camp make it so special”
Every person experience is different and in speaking with a young scout Jake O’Mahony from Mayfield who was on his first camp. He was just bursting with excitement and he said that the best activity for him was the river gorging which was very hard going he said but just trilling. Jumping into deep pools and scaling low waterfalls with the fast flowing river was just brilliant he said. Jake who is a pupil with Gael Scoil Gort Aileann would encourage far more young people to join the adventure of Scouting. I have learned so much he said and I cannot wait for the day when I am appointed a patrol leader in a few year’s time.
As part of the programme the scouts took on the task of climbing Croagh Patrick which was no mean achievement. It was the first time for any of the group to undertake the climb. At the top after posing for a photograph, the group had a quiet reflection to remember all past members of the St. Patrick’s Group who have ‘Gone Home’
A full day’s outing to Galway and Salthill saw the group enjoy a super day. Galway was just buzzing as it always is and of course a glorious fine day weather wise helped a lot. After catching light snack the group headed for the Great Escape Rooms where the group was dived into three and went to solve and find amazing clues to Escape from the room with a time frame of one hour. There was a story attached to each room and working as a team you really had to have your thinking cap on to enable you to find the clues to be able to continue. It was great to see all three groups completing the task with the hour timeframe.
It was then onto Salthill for Crazy Golf and one could easily see how it gets its name. Grouped in the teams of four the team of Alex O’Brien, Oscar Moran, Kieran Bloss and James Drugan had the best score. Competition was very high not to mention some of the strokes the leaders tried to take.
The swimming facilities at Leisureland are great and which led to a nice finish to the afternoon before heading into Salthill for a much deserved feed.
Back on site the only female leader Christina Twomey was keeping a motherly lookout for all the first time campers and indeed the more seasoned campers as well. It was a breakaway from the preparations for her forth coming wedding in November. We wish Eamonn Kiely and Christina well in their future life together.
Last Thursday and Friday saw a great finish to the camp with the making of wooden gliders on Thursday, giving a great sense of achievement. The furthest distance reached was 60 metres with Robert Nash showing how its done. There was a great sense of adventure later on Thursday afternoon with the group heading to Bly Island for a survival overnight with shelter building. There is something magic and special seeing a group around a fire away from the cares of the outside world, exchanging stories and someone starts to sing a song and one by one they all join in. That is the adventure of scouting.
Friday saw the group abseiling and caving before it was time to start taking down the marquee in readiness for the following mornings departure. As with most summer camps, there are always a few who are ready to move onto the next section – The Venture Scout Group. With the 3rd Cork best wishes were extended to Rob, John and Alex. The scout of the camp who displayed great spirit from the very start was Jake O’Mahony.
The leaders who gave of their time for the whole of the camp were John Maher, Eamonn Kiely, Christina Twomey, Darragh O’Brien, Sam and Ollie Drugan.