Here are the answers to some of the most common questions we receive here at The STC with regards to DofE. Feel free to get in touch if you have any others and you can find out more information about the DofE Awards itself on the DofE website.

  • Where will I be staying?
    We love to wild camp, but it depends on where you do your expedition as to how viable a wild camp will be. We do use commercial campsites, though mostly you will be camping in a farmer’s field or a scout/ guide campsite. Don’t worry too much about showers, we try to make our expeditions as authentic as possible. Most campsites do not have showers, some have hot and cold water and flushing loos, but most are very basic with only cold water taps and portaloos. On a wild camp you will not have access to any facilities; if you are going to be wild camping we will cover camp hygiene during the pre-expedition training. At some wild camps we supply clean drinking water, in more remote locations you will need to purify stream water by boiling it.
  • What food should I take with me?
    This will be covered in pre-expedition training. It is important to remember that you will be burning a lot of energy being active all day, so it is good to pack snacks for along the way. You will need to carry enough food to last the entire expedition.It is a good idea to work as a team to design an expedition menu which is interesting and balanced and which you can cook and eat as a team. Pack as many calories into the least weight and volume. Avoid foods which need refrigeration or which are easily damaged. Ready-made expedition meals can be a good option.Don’t forget that food can be a great pick me up when the going gets tough, your favourite chocolate bar might be just what you need to power you through to the end of the day.
  • Will I be able to shower?
    No – most of the campsites do not have showers. You will be able to wash, although there is unlikely to be hot water. We suggest either bringing a flannel and small bar of soap or using wet wipes.
  • Will there be a toilet at the campsite?
    Most of the campsites we use will have toilets – some may be proper flushing toilets, others may be more basic toilets or portable loos. If you are wild camping then you will not have a toilet, but we will provide you with a trowel and our instructors will discuss camp hygiene with you during the pre-expedition training.
  • What will I sleep in?
    As standard we use tents. These are lightweight and simple to pitch. Each tent can sleep 2 or 3 people and you will be able to choose how many tents your group takes on their expedition.
  • Should I bring toilet roll?
    Yes – you need to be self-sufficient. Some campsites do not provide toilet rolls or you may find that other campers have used them before you arrive. We recommend Andrex “on the go” which is a compact, coreless toilet roll or packets of tissues. Remember to protect your loo roll from the elements – it won’t be any use to you if it is soggy.
  • What if I have a medical condition illness or injury?
    Expeditions take place in remote areas and are often very strenuous. We will need to assess if it is safe for you to take part if you are not fully fit. Wherever possible we will try to accommodate everybody. We will assess each case on its merits.You may be able to apply for an exemption from the DofE 20 conditions. We may also recommend that you undertake further training and/or wait until you are fully fit before participating.
  • What happens if I am ill or injured during the expedition?
    All our instructors are first aid trained and qualified and will be there to assist you. If necessary, you will be seen by a medical professional. In the event that you are unable to continue with the expedition, we will of course contact your DofE Leader and your parent/guardian. In some circumstances we may arrange for you to be collected.
  • What equipment do I need?
    The pre-expedition training will cover this. If you would like to have an idea of what kind of equipment is required, we can give you a copy of our kit list or you can have a look at the DofE recommended kit list on the DofE website.
  • Can I wear trainers or approach shoes for the expedition?
    You must have proper walking boots which cover the ankle. It is essential that they have good soles and grips. If you turn up with the wrong footwear, you will not be able to take part.
  • Should I take a spare pair of trainers or flip flops?
    You should not walk barefoot around the campsite. If you don’t mind carrying a bit of extra weight, you may want to bring different footwear for the camp.
  • Will there be clean water available?
    You may be able to refill your water bottle along the way and water points are an essential part of good route planning. We recommend you carry at least 2 litres on your person and that you have sterilising tablets for occasions when you may need to refill from streams or rivers.