The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award at any level is designed to challenge and it’s often the expedition that challenges most. Self-sufficiency in a small group travelling unsupervised in the countryside can be a fantastic experience, possibly even life-changing. However, if your gear doesn’t fit or work properly or starts falling apart from the off, it can be uncomfortable, demoralising and overall a poor introduction to outdoor sport.
So we think there’s a balance to be struck between the fun of getting by with a motley collection of old and cheap kit where that’s sensible and the reassurance of having the gear that you can rely on when you need to. At The Outdoor Shop, we’ll never advise you to buy something brilliant that you just don’t need, but we’ll never recommend the cheap option if it won’t do the job, either. The DofE kit we stock is chosen for its quality, durability and value for money as well as how easy it is to use and care for – it’s equipment that we’re sure will be effective at a reasonable price.
There are a few things that you really do need to choose carefully: well-fitting walking boots and good socks are an absolute must if you want to get to the end with your feet intact; a reliable rucksack that’s adjusted to your size will save a lot of aches and pains through the trip; if your organisation isn’t providing one, a good tent is vital too. Everything else on the kit list is still important, but buying expensive versions won’t make as much difference to the experience.
Most of us have been through the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme itself, indeed we boast a DofE assessor amongst our number, so we’re well aware of the requirements of the expedition at Bronze, Silver and Gold levels. We also supply schools, colleges and centres with equipment and can both advise and recommend appropriate kit where needed. In short, we can kit you out with everything you need for a successful and enjoyable expedition; delve into our specific DofE categories and start ticking off your kit list now.