Davidson High School Silver Practice Pack & Paddle

Davidson High School Silver Practice Pack & Paddle
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  • Davidson Silver Practice Pack & Paddle 17-19 Sep 2020
    September 17, 2020 - September 19, 2020
    7:00 am - 5:00 pm


Please find important information below about your Silver Practice adventurous journey. 

All participants who undertake the Award MUST also take part in comprehensive Preliminary Training as stipulated in the Award Handbook (further information below in regards to the Preliminary Training).

NOTE – These programs are for Davidson High School students ONLY. 


YouthAdvance pride ourselves on developing challenging and rewarding adventurous journeys for all participants. Our qualified and highly experienced Program Coordinators and Guides will work with you through the required preparation and training prior to your first Adventurous Journey, then teach you skills like navigation and camp craft on your practice expedition, and finally assess your skills on your qualifying expedition.

Our staff do not lead from the front, they mentor and instruct from the back of the group to ensure that you and your group have the opportunity to work as a team and make sound judgements based on your training and our staff’s leadership. You’ll be required to take responsibility and make decisions for yourself while under supervision from experienced and qualified outdoor professionals.


YouthAdvance create physically and mentally challenging expeditions for our participants. Each day, participants will hike or paddle up to 12 km carrying their pack and all their equipment. Students are encouraged to start training and develop their fitness in preparation for these physical requirements, including weekly walks carrying their pack and wearing their hiking boots/shoes.

All of our programs satisfy the time requirements of the Adventurous Journey stipulated in The Award Handbook by the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award. In addition, we strive to make our AJ’s lots of fun as well as imparting knowledge on the Australian bush to help our participants make lasting memories as well as new friends and new experiences.


YouthAdvance’s partner company Remote Safety Solutions is a leading remote area risk and emergency management specialist. Safety is paramount for all of our Adventurous Journey’s. All of our risk management procedures, emergency planning and the routes will be provided to the school prior to the program.

Emergency communication and first aid equipment along with satellite tracking will be carried by each YouthAdvance staff member while on the program.


  • Transport to and from the venue;
  • All camping and national Park/State Forest fees;
  • Instruction and supervision from our experienced and qualified Outdoor Educators;
  • Group communication devices i.e. InReach, EPIRBs and satellite phones;
  • Group remote area first aid kit;
  • Preliminary Training;
  • On trip pre and post briefing;
  • Participant maps, map cases and compasses (1 per participant);
  • Canoe/Kayak, paddle and lifejacket.


Due to the number of bushfires that ravaged the state during summer across NSW and around the ACT, our team has been scouting out some more urban based programs that will be available until our National Parks reopen following the devastation.

YouthAdvance have designed a new and exciting program in the Pittwater area of the Northern Beaches in Sydney. Starting in Bayview Park, participants will hike through the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park and paddle through Pittwater. Participants will find some hidden gems within the Sydney basin, such as in the photos below taken by our team while scouting out the trip.


The below program rundown may alter slightly, however the rundown, particularly drop off and pick up times, will be confirmed prior to each program.

Day 2
Day 3
7.00 am – Participants arrive at school 6.30 am – Participants prepare breakfast, break camp 6.30 am – Participants prepare breakfast, break camp
7.15 am – Bus departs school for Program Location 7.30 am – Participants morning brief (P)  7.30 am – Participants morning brief (P) 
8.30 am – Bus arrives at Program Location 8.00 am – Participants start Leg 2 Hike- planned route (P) 8.00 am – Participants start Leg 3 Paddle – planned route (P)
8.30 am – Participants morning brief (P) 4.30 pm – Participants arrive at camp 3.30 pm – Participants arrive at designated finish point
9.00 am – Participants start Leg 1 Paddle – planned route (P) 4.30 pm – Group debrief session (P) 3.30 pm – Group debrief session (P)
4.30 pm – Participants arrive at camp 5.00 pm – Participants setup camp, prepare dinner and Night Session on risk management
4.30 pm – Group debrief session (P) / recap of  paddling and safety procedures session (P) 8.30 pm – Participants in tents 4.00 pm – Bus departs program location
5.00 pm – Participants setup camp, prepare dinner and Night Session on risk management 5.00 pm – Participants arrive at school
8.30 pm – Participants in tents

Average Purposeful Activity (P) = 8.5 hours

YouthAdvance will collect all participants from school and return them to school. As such, please meet at Davidson High School.

DROP OFF: 7.00 am, Day 1, at school.

PICK UP: 5.00 pm, Day 3, at school.

If you are going to be late, please let us know on +61 487 003 440 so we don’t depart without you. Please ensure you monitor traffic conditions and that arrangements are made for a prompt pickup of participants.

NOTE: The expedition WILL NOT be postponed because of forecast “unsettled” weather. However,  in the event of unseasonably very bad weather, or if a weather warning is issued in the program venue, the expedition may be postponed to ensure the safety of our participants. You will be notified of this via email. 


All registered participants will be required to complete the Online Preliminary Training work. A link will be sent to all registered participants once the bookings for the early bird session of this trip have been closed and/or once we have the majority of students enrolled. Please be aware that if you have not completed the preliminary training, you will NOT be permitted to board the bus to the journey.

YouthAdvance has covered off the following competencies in the online preliminary training session: 

  • Understanding of the Adventurous Journey planned to be undertaken;
  • First aid and emergency procedures (relevant to the type of environment for the Journey);
  • Safety and safe practice; 
  • Route planning and navigation (use of maps, compass/navigation aids or street/urban directories);
  • Camp craft/accommodation and hygiene;
  • Team work, problem solving and leadership training;
  • Meal planning, preparation of food and cooking (options will be provided in the even of a total fire ban where cooking is not possible);
  • Environmental awareness and care;
  • Necessary equipment and how to use it;
  • Technical skills in the mode of travel (i.e. knot tying, tent repairs etc);
  • Observation and recording skills. 


Your child using appropriate gear is instrumental in ensuring that they have an enjoyable and comfortable experience – we CANNOT stress this enough! If you are unsure whether your child’s equipment is suitable, please contact us for clarification.

More information on equipment will be provided in your confirmation email, including an equipment checklist. In addition, we will advise what equipment is supplied by YouthAdvance and how to hire or purchase gear from our Equipment Store. **PLEASE NOTE that at the moment with COVID-19, in order to mitigate the potential for spread of the virus, YouthAdvance will be providing single tents only and packs for hire per program and will maintain vigorous cleaning procedures between programs. Tents and packs are available on the hire equipment page so please either book in to hire one of ours or source your own. Further, unless participants reside in the same household or special provisions are given by parents and/or the school, there will be NO tent SHARING between participants. 

Note that we have a 50% off on hire of single tents at the moment…first come first served.

Please refer to the following page for additional information on Equipment for Adventurous Journeys (Equipment Resources).


Each participant will be responsible for planning, supplying and preparing their own meals for the duration of the hike. At least one day’s emergency rations should be carried by participants.

Additional information on meals, including sample menus and meal planning will be sent to you following registration and is available here: (Meal Planning Resources). Pre-packaged meals are available for purchase at discounted prices for all YouthAdvance participants here: (Meal Purchases).

**Please be aware that there will be no stoves or pots available due to COVID-19. Students may choose to hire or purchase a stove from us, bring their own cooking equipment OR they can plan a non-cooking meal instead. 

All participants should start with at least three full 1 Litre water bottles. In dry weather periods, water can be difficult to source so this is a minimum amount. You will be advised in the registration email if you are required to bring water purification tablets. 


In order to partake in this Adventurous Journey (AJ), you are required to seek approval from your Award Leader on the Online Record Book (ORB) BEFORE you get on the bus. 

Please us the following details as your AJ ORB entry:

Assessor: YouthAdvance Assessor

Supervisor: YouthAdvance Supervisor

Phone: 02 8957 5428

Email: [email protected]

Assessor sign-off will be completed in the ORB following your hike once you request assessor approval.

Award Leader sign-off WILL NOT be completed until your AJ report has been submitted and uploaded into the Documents section of the ORB. Please ensure that you use the appropriate template.


Following registration for this hike, you will be sent a link to CareMonkey to setup a profile. If we do not have a profile that is up to date (within 2 months), your child will not be permitted to board the bus.

We use CareMonkey to collect medical information about each participant. Please take the time to fill in this form accurately and honestly in each of the data fields. Accurate medical data is important in the event of an unseen medical emergency occurring while on the program. 


Please select the “Register” button next to your preferred dates and follow the prompts. 


If you have any questions, please contact our team at [email protected]



Located within the Sydney Basin, kayaking through Pittwater and hiking through the Ku-Ring-Gai National Park will give participants an opportunity to explore some hidden gems right in their backyard.