On the Water

During the summer term, the scouts work towards their level 2 and level 3 staged badges in Pulling, Paddling and Sailing. Some of the scouts who have achieved their power boat permit also have the opportunity to build up their hours on the water.

Summer term
On the water



The scouts typically achieve level three of this badge (nautical skills staged activity badge) using skills learned on the water and earlier in the year. The scouts take part in 3-4 different boats over the summer term. For most activities, they learn how to act safely involved in a capsize or man overboard situation. They learn about buoyancy aids, judging water depth, various knots relevant to water based activities, correct terminology for the activity and equipment.

The scouts work towards level 2 or 3 of this badge (Paddle sports staged activity badge) depending on their previous experience and how long they have been with us. During the summer they spend either half a term or a whole term paddling in double-handed canoes and single handed kayaks. They learn about safety, how to launch and recover the boats, handle man overboard and capsize situations and different types of stroke to control the boat moving forwards, backwards, sideways and around a course.

The scouts work towards level 2 or 3 of this badge (Sailing staged activity badge) depending on their previous experience and how long they have been with us. During the summer they spend either half a term or a whole term paddling in double or triple-handed Fevers and Wayfairers, single handed picos and, when they first start, traditional wood hull seaways which give them the ability to learn the basic control in a very stable environment. They learn about safety, how to launch and recover the boats, handle man overboard and capsize situations, coming alongside morings, pontoons and other boats and how to tack, gybe, balance and trim the boat and make proper use of the centre board for speed and stability (The five principles of sailing)

Pulling is the naval term for rowing and we use our own home counties scout gig rigged for pulling with 4 or 5 oars. Scouts spend one session in the term in the gig, taking positions on both sides of the boat as an oarsman, the stroke position and wearing the captain hat at the helm. They learn the traditional naval commands, (occasionally interspersed with modern rowing terminology when the leaders lapse) and learn how to get speed and control by rowing in time and in control. They take turns navigating around a course and picking up a mooring, taking into account the momentum of a boat and crew weighing almost 1 ton
Kata-canoeing Each summer, the EFS district holds a number of competitive events between scout groups and we get the chance to race in dual hull canoes with teams of 4-6. This is a popular event and we are able to put a number of scratch crews together to practice paddling together before picking a final team to race.

We own two Home Counties Gigs which are traditional sail boats built to a scout design. These had not been used for several years after moving our summer activities to Fairlop, however we put one of the Gigs - Wizard - back onto the water rigged for pulling only last summer term and we have the second of the boats - Drake - in the garage waiting her turn back on the water.

Wizard

Wizard is moored up at Fairlop during the summer term and is used by the 4th EFS scouts and by the local Rangers group. At present Wizard is rigged for fixed seat pulling with either four or five oars and a coxswain. As a traditional pulling boat, the scouts learn the traditional navy commands and terminology which you can find on our forms page.

On the water, under sail and currently rigged for pulling
Minor repairs and a make-over after five years off the water

Drake

Drake is undergoing minor repair and repainting (some lovely individual spray painted a happy smiley face down her hull) and the plan is to re-fit her rigging to allow her to be sailed.

Blythe

Used as a safety boat when the group sailed and maintained their own boats, Blythe is a 4.5m Tornado RIB. Early in 2018 she was relocated to the RN sea scout group on HMS Excellent in Portsmouth and refurbished and re-named Scout 3. By donating her to the RN sea scout group, she is helping to train both our own scouts and many other groups around the UK.


Blythe on the water

Refurbishment at HMS Excellent

Ready again as Scout3