Soldier Development Week

Soldier under Training (SuT) Jamie Davies blogs from the Army Training Centre, Pirbright, about a week of adventurous training in Wales in which he’s been hillwalking, caving and canoeing…

SuT Jamie Davies

SuT Jamie Davies

I’ve been waiting for this week – Soldier Development Week – since I started.

It’s been a week was full of adventurous training – which I love. It’s used as a method of developing our values and standards. The staff have been really good and the activities were so much fun – enjoyable, but also quite challenging.

We set off for Wales at 0800 on Monday morning.  It was a five hour journey.  When we arrived we were issued with loads of kit and then we were straight into it!

On Tuesday we were briefed that we were going hillwalking on an overnight expedition.  The route was quite long (26km) and there were a lot of hills to go over, but I was still excited.  On the first day it rained a lot and the wind was immensely strong.  Cloud came down really low and it was freezing. I have to admit it wasn’t a huge amount of fun but it certainly consolidated our navigational skills!

We had to set our tents up in the dark, because it gets dark so early in winter, but morale was still high.  We all then cooked a hot meal and got an early bed.  I think we were all asleep by 2000! We then got up after 12 hours of sleep and packed away our kit.

On the second morning we had to complete two quite big hills and then we went down to a refreshments van, where we  all stocked up on bacon butties, burgers and hot drinks.  We were then picked up and taken back to camp.

On the third day my group went caving.  It was cold and tight in places, but I loved it.  On the fourth day we had canoeing, which was really good – if a bit on the chilly side.

All in all a fantastic week. Next week we have our Annual Combat Marksmanship Test (shooting assessment). Fingers crossed!