By: Blonde One
Last weekend was the annual Ten Tors challenge on Dartmoor. It is an event that’s much revered in the South West as being almost a rite of passage for some. It has a tradition that goes back over 50 years and phrases such as “my uncle did it” or “my sister did it” are frequent. This year was a special one for Trinity School as they have not entered a team into the challenge for quite some time. So this year was to be one to remember, whatever the outcome. So after training since November a team of 6 fine young people were chosen to have the honour of representing their school in this tough event.
The team were to embark on a self sufficient journey of 35 miles, navigating their way over a route set by the Army covering 10 of Dartmoor’s tors, carrying everything they needed including camping equipment, food and clothing. By the time we got to the actual weekend they were excited for the challenge and over breakfast at 5.30am I had the pleasure of seeing 6 ‘game faces’. They were ready.
At 7am they set off down the hill, amidst a crowd of 2,400 youngsters. The wait, for us back at base camp, began. We would not have any contact with them until they crossed the finish line the next day before 5pm. This challenge is not a race and it doesn’t matter what time they come in on Sunday as long as it’s before 5. The Army trackers that they carried provided us with information about their progress and it seemed as if they were doing well. Tor number 7 provided their bed for the night which must have given them some satisfaction that they had cracked over half of the route.
At 12.10 on Sunday afternoon we were incredibly proud to see our team of 6 youngsters come over the final hill with their white (yes, white!) hoodies, purple rucksack covers and the school flag. They had had perfect walking weather, perfect navigation (almost) and perfect teamwork! A job well done I would say.