Year 9 camp certainly wasn’t just a walk in a national park. The long hikes, heavy packs, building our own rafts and all our responsibilities back at camp challenged us both mentally and physically. Despite this, we all got far more out of camp than we gave. The friendships we developed, the life-lessons learnt and the memories we created. Our camp group yelling Adele’s hit song ‘Hello’ at the top of our lungs to another group across the river is an experience I will treasure for years to come.
The first day we all arrived in Yarrawonga, on the Murray River, waiting in anticipation of what the next few days would bring. Initially we were disgusted by the thought of no showers for a full 5 days and having to use ‘Groover’ the camping toilet, but it soon became routine. On the first day, raft building was a great team building experience, forming a vessel to safely transport us and our packs to more camps further down the river. We employed critical thinking to learn the new knots required to form the raft and used collaboration to achieve the common goal of creating a stable raft. The next few days of hiking and paddling brought our group closer together, as we persevered through challenges like setting up our tents without any instruction. Building the fire, cooking, cleaning, putting up the tarp and setting up the hand-wash station were just a few of our jobs met with enthusiasm.
This new group of people, many of which I had never had a proper conversation with started to feel like family. Sing-offs around the campfire, countless riddles that I could just never solve and of course mealtimes were just a few of the highlights on camp. I speak for everyone when I say that camp was truly a memorable experience.