David Benson
Back to alumni stories

David Benson - Ullswater, The Lake District, 1973

Hardly anyone else in my group at Ullswater could believe this, but I actually volunteered for the Outward Bound course! I was only 17 , and had a vague interest in walking and camping. A friend volunteered with me, which helped. I wasn't particularly sporty, but I fancied the expedition side of the course. Some of it, notably the early morning run over the hill and the plunge into Ullswater, was tough. Working as a team with a bunch of kids my own age was also a challenge. But among the showing off, jostling for position in the pecking order , disagreements among the team and so on, a definite spirit emerged. I thought the two instructors were great. I especially enjoyed the long walks and the canoeing.
And it was good to be in a soccer free environment. Though I love the game. it's good to realise at that age that there are actually other sports out there to participate in.
Anyway, the course helped to foster a lifelong love of mountains and the outdoors. I am still a frequent visitor to the Lakes , in my native Cumbria, with my own family. In addition, I often go to the Alps from where I'm living and have travelled to Nepal, Morocco and other places to walk and trek. Outward Bound helped give me the confidence and some of the skills to do these things.