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James Brown - Aberdovey, Wales, 1987
from the moment i stepped off the train and had to walk a mile or so back along the beach i knew i was in for an adventure. it was 22nd nov 1987 , a lovely day but chilly . if gettin up the hill to the centre was tough i was in for a surprise over the coming 3 weeks. i'm sure i was in shackleton group under des george. there are too many great memories to go through them all so i'll just tell 1 which stands out if i may. on an expedition where we had to stay by ourselves without contacting any other members of our group , after gettin dropped off on a mountainside covered by trees i realised i didnt have my bivy therefore not having any shelter. it was about 11am with drizzle non stop so i contemplated going to find des and face a good rollicking and being embarrassed or trying to sort some shelter out for myself. i looked around and a few feet away was a 40-50ft drop into a stream , which had a load of dead trees in it. so i started hauling them up 1 by 1 and taking all the branches off them . it was just going dark when i finished building , what could only be described as something like a wooden tomb , 6ft x 3ft x 3ft. i covered the top with strips of bark i took off them. i had a good nights sleep and i woke up lying on my belly when not much more than 6 inches from my nose i noticed a big leaf moving , so i lay and watched it for a few minutes hoping it wasnt something which would bite me, when all of a sudden a little red squirrel popped out from under it and just sat there looking at me , eye to eye. i must have moved and it bolted , a memory i will keep forever. i have to say a lot of these young ones today could do no better than do an outward bound course. the best 3 weeks i have ever spent away from home , thanks.