City of London Academy 2017

Afsana Shahajahan, Jade Chong, Nahshon Ceniza, Jesmina Uruci, Shenice Osisioma

South Downs Way

The Five of us had decided to commit to the challenge of trekking from the south downs way all the way to Brighton. Most of us had completed Duke of Edinburgh However, we have come to the agreement that the Mark Evison trek was one of the most challenging situations we have come across.
The first day we had all met up at 6am ready to start our three-day journey. Our starting point of the trek was from Winchester to Petersfield. We arrived in Winchester at around 10am and began trekking through the South Downs Way. By 3pm we began to realise that we must have taken a wrong route as we had ended up near highways and roads that was near impossible for us to trek. However, we persevered and continued to take our original route. Unfortunately, we had gotten even more lost that we had to end up walking on the edge of the road to get to the nearest town. By 6pm we were still trekking along the cars that were passing by that thunder had begun. It was raining heavily and we had no clue of how to get to our campsite. Luckily, we found a small array of houses in which we knocked and found a helpful couple guide us towards our campsite. We were back on track and arrived to our campsite around 10pm soaking wet and extremely tired after an 11 hour trek.
Day 2 was much better as we started off early with a clear mind and restored energy. We trekked from Petersfield to Amberly to reach our second campsite. We crossed a few highways however, they weren’t as bad as the first day in which we were literally walking on the road. The weather itself was much better as it didn’t rain and the sun was shining so our backpacks dried off nicely throughout the day. We reached our second campsite and set up our tents.
Day 3 was our last day and ultimately our favourite day out of the three. Not only were we finally going home after a challenge but we also got to experience Brighton! It was like a treat after a hard work and we felt we deserved it after the difficulties we faced. Some of the challenges we faced as a team itself was that we were very stressed about the weather and the wrong routings that it did cause some arguments and fall outs however, I’m proud of my team that we stuck together even though some of us weren’t on good terms and tears had been shed we managed to get by and reach our destination. There were a few minor setbacks we suffered throughout our journey which was that we had forgotten to bring a can opener. This meant that we had to carry the cans for two days until on the third day we found a store and we had bought a can opener.
I would recommend the Mark Evison Challenge to future students just because it’s a fun and interesting way to learn how to become independent and understand that it can be tough to keep a calm face during stressful times however, you should always stick together as a team and work out how to reach the end rather than arguing about it. At the end of the day we realised that we were on our own with no adults or set route. We had to figure it out all by ourselves because we were the ones who created the route and we were the ones who were completing the challenge.