We have just sent out our latest newsletter with information about our new web site,. There is news about the Overground Underground Ingleborough Dales Festival where we are offering discounts, The Dales Discoveries Treasure Hunt which we are helping to sponsor and have given a prize to and the new Settle-Carlisle web site which we are on too . Have a look and if you would like to receive a newsletter of your own you can sign up here. We do not send out many and you can opt out at anytime. Don’t forget we have caving this Monday (25th May) too.
For several years now we have been running Introductory Caving Trips suitable for individuals, couples and small groups during the holiday periods from February until October half term. (Dates at the end of the blog)
The caves are not tight and you can walk in many sections. There are some stooping and crawling sections and even a few optional squeezes if you would like but they are not compulsory if you are worried about that. There are some deep pools to get around, waterfalls and small climbs but nothing that an averagely fit person with a sense of adventure will not be able to do. It’s a great chance to do something a bit different with some of your family or friends in an area famous for its caves.
These Caving Trips start at 5.00 pm and finish at approximately 8.00 pm so not too late for the younger ones and time to go for a bar snack locally afterwards if you want.
Your local, qualified and very experienced instructor will meet you at the parking place nearest the cave just above Horton-in-Ribblesdale and directions to the site will be given on booking.
Everyone will change into the caving kit at the road head and walk a short distance to the cave before going underground.
We supply – Caving oversuits, helmets, lights, belts, wellies, and all safety gear. We will supply you with a simple kit list on booking but it will not include the need for any specialist clothes. You will need a full change of clothes for afterwards though as you will be getting a bit wet.
The minimum age is 8 years old. As we are an AALA licensed provider we can take children under 18 without a parent or legal guardian being with us. We just need their written consent or verbal if you are bringing your own child to the caving venue. No company that charges you can take under 18s on their own without having this license as it is a legal requirement to ensure their safety.
2014 DATES Mon 14th April ~ Mon 21st April ~ Mon 5th May ~ Sun 25th May ~ Mon 26th May ~ Mon 21st July ~ Mon 28th July ~ Mon 4th Aug ~ Mon 11th Aug ~ Mon 18th Aug ~ Mon 25th Aug ~ Mon 1st Sept ~ Mon 8th Sept ~ Mon 20th Oct ~ Mon 27th Oct.
I was tidying up a few days ago and I found some lovely feedback I got from a participant on one of our two day NNAS Navigation Skills Courses a few years ago. It was quite a long note but the piece that made me think more was this.
“….Right from the start she made us feel relaxed and was extremely patient. I really enjoyed her company and was so pleased to find a normal person leading the course! I was afraid I would be trained by a gung-ho youngster, but instead I found our trainer was a really, really nice woman who didn’t care that I amble up hills. This course is very woman friendly (well everyone friendly, actually) and avoids any competition. Participants are not judged by their physical appearance and you won’t feel intimidated……”
It was nice to be called “normal” under these circumstances as I think I am! Everybody can get involved in navigation from all ages to a wide range of abilities. Over the years we have had triathlon competitors, ultra runners to women who are out walking their dogs on their own. I often fall into that category.
The point I want to make is that you do not need to be super-fit and you do not need to climb mountains to enjoy the feelings of freedom and adventure that you can get when out exploring the countryside with your map and compass. In fact the fresh air and exercise, at whatever level, can help your fitness, reduce your stress and allow you to get some perspective in your life. I love to go out walking and having some time away from work and other commitments. It works for me, every time.
You do not need to be going very far, or very high to see beautiful views in the Yorkshire Dales but being able to read a map and use a compass confidently is essential to your enjoyment and safety. Learning these skills with us can be done at a pace to suit you. I do not like having to worry about keeping up with other people especially when I am trying to learn. Your sole purpose becomes trying not to be left behind or look bad which is no state of mind for you to learn in. Gaining navigation skills is not about speed. Yes, there are elements when you need to time yourself covering a distance but that is about you learning what your speed is so you can make estimates on ground covered when you are the navigator.
None or our navigation events are rushed but we thought that some people might like to come to the Yorkshire Dales to learn and develop their map and compass skills in a more leisurely way and one where they have also have time to spend exploring the area on their own. With this in mind we will be running a three day midweek Navigation Skills at your Leisure event on Monday 19th, Tuesday 20th & Wednesday 21st May. Each morning there will be 4 hours of skills training in a different place each time and then you will be free to explore the area on your own or relax at where you are staying. We can recommend different places for all budgets that welcome walkers and muddy boots. The 3 days will be a NNAS Bronze/Silver Course which is accredited with a certificate and badge on successful completion. If you do not want any form of assessment that will be entirely up to you so do not be put off. The cost of the three days is £126.00 and this will include a local, qualified and experienced instructor, the loan of a map and compass for the duration and a badge and certificate at the end. Want to know more? Contact me on 01729 824455 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Cannot do those dates? If you like the idea of doing some training over a longer period but these dates are not suitable please get in touch as we can usually arrange other dates to suit. Don’t forget Yorkshire Dales Guides does not have any minimum numbers so once one person has booked on any of our events it will go ahead. There is nothing worse than making all your accommodation and travel arrangements to find out your course has been cancelled! Not with us.
We are helping to organise this event as we are active members of the team. For the last few years we have run our own Yorkshire Three Peaks walk but we wanted to run an event that is unique to our team. This is it and it starts in Clapham where the team is based. Come and join us and tell your friends about it. The shorter walk is also suitable for families so make a day of it. More information and how to sign up is on the website www.cro.org.uk/challenge
For some people being able to read a map and use a compass confidently allows them to venture away from the well used tracks and paths. For others there may be a particular challenge they want to tackle such as the Coast to Coast or even the Yorkshire Three Peaks but they realise that the route can be difficult to follow in places or when visibility is not good. Whenever you are walking, running or biking away from the road it is important you can read a map and even better if you can use a compass too. Maybe you have got your apps. on your phone or a GPS but you still need to be able to read a map as you need to understand about the ground you are going to be covering. This kit will not stop you walking over a cliff or crag edge, into a bog or over a limestone pavement. You need to be able to relate the map features to the ground.
None of this is too difficult and a basic level can be learned quite quickly enabling you to go away with enough knowledge to get you started and for you to then practice and build on those skills. You may feel you have some skills already and if so we can help you develop these and learn more.
We run several different courses for people at different levels.
Getting Started with Navigation Days Never used a map before – then this is the day for you These days are designed for people who want to learn the basics of navigation.
Developing Your Compass Skills Days Understand how to use a map and the basics of navigation but never really used a compass before – then this is the day for you. These days are for people who have used a map to navigate and now want to gain skills in using a compass.
Walking with a GPS Days Do you have a GPS which you have not really used much? Do you have a phobia about manuals? Do you want to know if you would find a GPS useful? – Then this is the day for you. These days are designed for people who want to learn the basics of a GPS while on a walk. Instruction given at your own pace.
Safety on the Hills Days Happy about your navigation skills but need to gain some confidence around your knowledge of personal safety when out walking on the hills – then this day if for you. These days will be very practical and look at planning and preparation for going into more remote area and simple procedures for unforeseen incidents.
NNAS Bronze, Silver or Gold Award courses. 2 day non-residential courses with are nationally accredited. These courses are run for people at the various levels who would like to follow a recognised course and receive an award and certificate. The National Navigation Award Scheme is a progressive personal performance programme which develops navigation skills. Helping people to enjoy the outdoors safely and confidently.
More information and dates for all these events on our web site.
Today was the first trip underground using SRT for one of our Go Dales Project groups. They had been underground on previous sessions and also had some time learning the SRT skills in our Barn. This trip let them put those skills into practice and they got an idea of where SRT can enable them to go. If you want to learn about these skills or try caving then have a look at our website.
Last Tuesday we spent a few hours going on a caving trip down Valley Entrance and into Kingsdale Master Cave with John McKeown of Lakes TV and their presenter Simon Rodger. Due to the heavy rain the night before it was quite a wet and “sporting” trip but everyone had a good time and hopefully got some good footage. Watch this space for when the finished article is available. We can’t wait!