Sea Kayaking and Hiking Expedition

At Outward Bound we have a passion for going on Adventures unlike any other. We call these OBSA Expeditions. This is a short Blog on what one of those adventures would need and entail:

What is an Expedition: It is an organized journey that is made for a particular purpose such as exploration, mission etc.

What are the Purposes for our Expeditions:

  1. An Expedition can provide incentive for and a chance to measure individual growth and group achievement of skills, these are called oriented goals.
  2. An Expedition, more than many other types of Adventures, offers the Participant the opportunity to truly master the skills required and proceed with the activity with little or no input from an Instructor. A very empowering learning environment.
  3. It helps to identify weaknesses and strengths.

 The Equipment required for the Expedition:  

Tents and sleeping bag: The tents are used for on the ground sleeping. At Outward Bound South Africa we provide our students with two-man tents. The tent is light in weight and it is easy to carry. Outward Bound South Africa also provides students with the sleeping bag if they happen to come on course without one.             

Douglas: We use the spade to clear the cooking area so that the grass doesn’t catch a flame and it is also used for digging up the “long drop”.

Woozy mat: The woozy mat is used for the lightning drill and also for sleeping on. We tell our Students to sit on the woozy mat only when we know it is necessary to do a lightning drill.

Stoves: When Students go out for an expedition we also provide them with the ground stoves. We give them 4 stoves to use for cooking.

Food: We give our Students rations (food) when they go out for an expedition. They need to be able to share the food among themselves.

Torch: A torch is needed at night when students are hiking or during night camp crafting.

First Aid Kit: We, as Outward Bound South Africa Instructors are qualified with Level Three First Aid. We carry First Aid Kits at all times while in the great Outdoors. It is used for any emergency or if Students need medical attention.

Teaching Outline:

Ø  How to pack a back pack: The first thing that goes into the back pack is the back pack liner. It helps to keep your things dry in case it rains. The second thing that goes into back pack liner will be the sleeping bag because it is the last thing you will need, unless if it is really necessary to be used during the day. The third thing will be your clothes followed by group equipment. A rain coat should always be packed at the top or it should always be where it is easy to grab.

Ø  Food and Drinks: Most Participants are unfamiliar with the Outward Bound food and thus unaware of the possible ways of preparing it. The Instructor is their main source of information and inspiration. Before the course starts it is important as an Instructor to be familiar with the rations and the different ways of preparing them. The benefits will be healthier, more efficient and you will end up with a happy group.

Ø  Map and compass: Teaching Participants how to read a map is a very important tool. It offers metaphors to encourage people to choose the right directions in their lives. The top of the map always points North. Always teach Participants how to use a compass and how to orientate the map. The compass is the most useful when you don’t have distinctive geographical features to orientate yourself with. The magnetised needle in your compass will align itself with the earth’s magnetic field that runs approximately along its North –South axis, unless there’s something metallic or magnetic that interferes with it.

So, after reading all this, you are now ready to embark on Your very own Expedition! Send us pictures and let us know where you explored at Outward Bound SA and that you found! We can’t wait to hear all your stories…

Words by:


Training Coordinator at Outward Bound SA

Eat Right & Travel Light

When packing the food for your camping trip, planning is key.

Every gram counts when you are carrying all your camping equipment, clothes and meals on your back. Follow these 5 easy tips to make sure you are eating right while travelling light on your next outdoor adventure:

  1. Foods high in energy and nutrition are vital as you will be burning many calories out in the mountains. Make sure you are eating a balanced diet and include a starch, protein and a fruit or vegetables into every meal.
  2. Once you have collected your food items, lay them out clearly into the different meals. This will help you to get a clear picture of what you will be eating and help you to avoid taking too much or too little. Use a basic food group wheel to make sure you are including all the types of food that your body will need.
  3. Get rid of any unnecessary packaging, you don’t want to fill your bag up with air. Remember that whatever you take into the mountains, you must take out with you. You should be able to eat as much of what you carry as possible. This way your bag gets lighter as you eat and you don’t end up carrying too much rubbish around.
  4. Snacks are an absolute must to keep you going through long days on your backpacking trip. Be wise in your selection of snacks as this can be tricky. Avoid foods that are high in sugar; they tend to give you a burst of energy up front and then soon leave you exhausted and thirsty. Rather go for snacks high in protein or complex carbohydrates that will give you long lasting energy throughout the day.
  5. Finally never break the three health rules of backpacking: Hydration. Hydration. Hydration. You may aim to travel light but you should never skimp on your water supplies. When backpacking, your body uses much more water than usual and you should budget at least 2 litres of drinking water per person for every day you are out. Remember this is not including the water you will use to cook and clean. Dehydration is extremely dangerous and can sneak up on you if you are not extra careful. So a few extra ‘back up litres’ is highly recommended.