Bronze Training 2022 – first steps (on Zoom)


First find out about maps by watching this video: Introduction to Maps.

Then watch these very short videos.

Map and compass

Take and walk a bearing

Kit, food etc

First, you should start to think about what kit you need.  Some kit will be supplied for you – tent, stove etc.  You should make sure you can get (borrow?) comfortable walking boots, and try them out to find the best socks to go with them.  You need good waterproofs, including trousers – again, you could borrow these.  You need a proper rucksack (60 litres) so see where you can get one. Check the full Kit list for hillwalking.


Navigation – the next stage

The 5 Ds

Material used on Zoom 27 March 2022 (check downloads)

Map of Princes Street – setting a map so it points the right way; ticking off places (monuments, streets, gardens…) as you walk along, so you know how far along you are

Kit and Rucksack – what you need and how to pack it in your rucksack

How to choose where to pitch your tent – things to think about

Navigation – compass; OS locate app; using tick points along a handrail

Aim and projects

Every Qualifying Expedition must have an aim, usually some sort of project involving all members of the group.  Note, too, that every group at Silver and Gold has to prepare and deliver a Presentation about their expedition, which is usually linked to the aim, so it is worth choosing something interesting, and agreeing how you can make sure you will have the photos etc for the presentation.

General materials for reference

20 Conditions of a DofE Expedition

Planning the expedition

1. The team must plan and organise the expedition; all members of the team should be able to describe the role they have played in planning.

2. The expedition must have an aim. The aim can be set by the Leader at Bronze level only.

3. All participants must be within the qualifying age of the programme level and at the same Award level (i.e. not have completed the same or higher level of expedition).

4. There must be between four and seven participants in a team (eight for modes of travel which have tandem).

5. The expedition should take place in the recommended environment.

Bronze: Expeditions should be in normal rural countryside – familiar and local to groups.
Silver: Expeditions should be in normal rural, open countryside or forest – unfamiliar to groups.
Gold: Expeditions should be in wild country (remote from habitation) which is unfamiliar to groups.

6. Accommodation must be by camping or other simple self-catering accommodation (e.g. camping barns or bunkhouses).

7. The expedition must be of the correct duration and meet the minimum hours of planned activity.

Bronze: A minimum of 2 days, 1 night; 6 hours planned activity each day.
Silver: A minimum of 3 days, 2 nights; 7 hours planned activity each day.
Gold: A minimum of 4 days, 3 nights; 8 hours planned activity each day.

8. All expeditions must be supervised by an adult (the Expedition Supervisor) who is able to accept responsibility for the safety of the team.

9. Assessment must be by an accredited Assessor. At Bronze level only, the Assessor may also be the Expedition Supervisor.

10. Expeditions will usually take place between the end of March and the end of October. They may take place outside this period, if so, non-camping accommodation options should be considered.

Training and practice

11. Participants must be adequately trained to safely undertake a remotely supervised expedition in the environment in which they will be operating.

Bronze: Teams must complete the required training.
Silver: Teams must complete the required training and a practice expedition of a minimum 2 days, 2 nights.
Gold: Teams must complete the required training and a practice expedition of a minimum 2 days, 2 nights.

During the expedition

12. All expeditions must be by the participants’ own physical effort, without motorised or outside assistance. Mobility aids may be used where appropriate to the needs of the participant.

13. All expeditions must be unaccompanied and self-sufficient. The team must be properly equipped, and supervision must be carried out remotely.

14. Teams must possess the necessary physical fitness, first aid and expedition skills required to complete their expedition safely.

15. Groups must adhere to a mobile phone use policy as agreed with their Expedition Supervisor and Assessor. This agreement should also include use of other electronic equipment.

16. Participants must behave responsibly with respect for their team members, Leaders, the public and animals.

17. Groups must understand and adhere to the Countryside /Scottish Outdoor Access, Highway and Water Sports Codes (as appropriate).

18. Participants must plan an appropriate expedition menu, including cooking and eating a substantial hot meal on each day. This is optional on the final day.

Post expedition

19. Participants must actively participate in a debrief with their Assessor at the end of the expedition.

20. At Silver and Gold level, a presentation must be prepared and delivered after the expedition.

You can download a PDF version of the 20 Conditions of the Expedition section here.

Expedition Training Framework – Silver and Gold

This gives details of what we have to cover, under the following headings:

  1. First aid and emergency procedures
  2. An awareness of risk and health and safety issues
  3. Navigation and route planning
    1. Preparatory map skills
    2. Practical map skills
    3. Compass skills
  4. Campcraft, equipment and hygiene
  5. Food and cooking
  6. Countryside and Highway Codes
  7. Observation recording and presentations
  8. Team building
  9. Proficiency in the mode of travel – walking

Expedition Training Framework Silver – full document
Scottish Outdoor Access Code

Enjoying the outdoors responsibly

When visiting the outdoors, you must behave responsibly, and the Code explains what this means. The main responsibilities can be summarised as

Find out more: Scottish Outdoor Access Code – Part 3 Exercising Access Rights Responsibly

Countryside Code short version

Respect other people

Protect the natural environment

Enjoy the outdoors

Ticks and Lyme Disease

You must be aware of ticks and the potential dangers they present.  Full information is available in this document:

Ticks and Lyme Disease

How to do an expedition – advice

How to walk – ideas and suggestions


Boots, socks, cut toenails, blisters

Speed – pace of slowest …

Take turns at front and back – not always same position in group

Keep to times on route card

Hills – shorten pace, walk at an angle across slope (traversing)

Contouring – but follow agreed route

Rocky ground, muddy ground, boggy ground

Rucksack: adjusting; loading; lifting; walking

Remember road safety including forestry vehicles: no earphones

Pay attention to what you are doing and what is around you: traffic? bikes? animals? holes in ground?


For rain

For heat

For cold – gloves, hat, layers …

For sun – sunblock (only what you need!)

For midges etc – net, repellent; keep tent door shut!


Lots of high energy, lightweight food:

Meals – breakfast & evening

Snacks – as you go, including lunch


Drink plenty.

Carry 2 litres per day.

To be safe, water must either be boiled for at least one minute or treated with water purifying tablets (Chlorine Dioxide is the most effective).  It should be taken from a free flowing stream/small river preferably not a pond or loch. Check upstream for 100/150m to make sure there is nothing in the water that could be harmful – dead animals, rubbish, chemicals etc. If in doubt, always treat with tablets rather than boil. 


Use route card, map, compass and watch at all stages.

Don’t assume somebody else knows!

Keep your Assessor happy

Keep to your route.

Keep to time.

Shut gates if you open them.

Don’t block a gate, stile or path – be polite to other people.

No litter!

Phones only for emergency, or as a camera.  Don’t use social media!

Work on your project.

Enjoy yourselves

Chat to each other

Make decisions as a group

Don’t listen to music etc as you go!

Support each other – help to put rucksack on; get someone’s water bottle etc from pack …

Take photos and notes of what you see.