Cuboree wash out!

The first Cuboree camp in Queensland was …. wet wet wet!   Harris and I, along with 859 of our closest Cub Scout friends, leaders and helpers, descended on Stanthorpe on Friday for what we anticipated to be 5 days and 4 nights of camp. 

From the moment we ’bumped in’ it was obvious how much rain the camp ground had already received. Those lucky people who owned gumboots were perhaps the only people to have truly dry feet during the camp.  Most Cubs were wearing sneakers and within five minutes were wearing wet, muddy sneakers!

‘Water Camp 6′ rocked!  A great bunch of leaders – thanks guys for a hoot of a weekend; and a terrific pack of Cub Scouts.

Now for the clincher – Saturday night (2nd night of 4), Cuboree was hit by a large torrential downpour that saw numerous rivers of water rush through campsites and tents. Already seriously muddy bogs became larger, deeper and well above the ankle mud bogs. Cub Scouts standing in line for showers would have been more successful had they stripped off, soaped up and ran around outside for a minute.  The rain finally eased enough for us to leave the safety of tents and make our way to the dining hall, dogging rivers of water and lose-your-boot mud holes along the way.

That evening we were not permitted to return to our tents until the 4 subcamps had been inspected.  By this time the young campers were exhausted and it was not uncommon to see Cubs with heads on tables fast asleep.

‘Water Camp’ was high and dry for the most part and we could finally put our young pack to bed by 9.30 pm. Those that bore the brunt of the downpour however were moving sleepy Cubs and beds until midnight.  I was luckily tucked up in my sleeping bag with my hot water bottle.

Come day break the decision to end the camp two days early was passed down.  It was the right decision at the time given the conditions we were working under. Another two days of wet muddy conditions with more rain and storms on the horizon was not a pretty prospect.  Some Cubs were out of clean dry clothes; there was not a dry shoe amongst them (apart from the odd gumboot or two), and camps are exhausting at the best of times! 

Sunday was to be family day with an extra 600 bodies registered to visit Cuboree. What an absolute nightmare that would have been given the sheer amount of mud around the site. 

After packing up gear; pulling down dry tents; transporting and unloading gear; finding stray gear; lining up for lunch; lining up to ‘bump out’; gathering Cub Scouts; finding the car; packing the car; leaving the site; driving two hours; pit stop along the way; then dropping off 2 extra Cubs – we arrived home at 5 pm.  Needless to say I slept like a log last night (maybe the 2 glasses of wine had something to do with that).

Cuboree 2010 Wrap Up – some things could have gone smoother; you can’t pick the weather; but would we do it again – most definitely!


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