Category Archives: Venturer News

MCMK Venturers | Aboriginal Cave Paintings

MCMK Venturers | How to Remove Leeches

Bush Tucker Weekend with Jake Cassar

Jake Cassar was our special guest at our recent camp at Wannawang. Known as “The Bush Tucker Man” from the Central Coast, Jake has special developed special skills taught to him by Aboriginal elders. It’s not uncommon for Jake to go camping for weeks relying just on bush tucker from our local region!

Jake Cassar

Jake picking up some take-away!

During this weekend we learned about…
– Bush tucker
– Bush medicine
– Basic animal tracking
– Information on weather prediction
– Basic survival skills
– Didgeridoo demonstration and lessons
– Local Aboriginal customs (with permission from traditional custodians)
– Early European history

There was a lot of information to take in, so we’ve recorded just some of it on video. Visit our dedicated Bush Tucker Videos page to see just a glimpse of what we learned over this great weekend.

MCMK Venturers visit Thailand!!

Why is Ari standing like a monk?

…aahhh no. Not really. But sort of!

A small group of Mount Colah Mount Kuring Gai Venturers and Berowra Venturers spent a day at Wat Buddha Damma, which is a Buddhist monastery, deep in the bush in northern Sydney. This retreat is 15kms north of Wisemans Ferry, and offers a glimpse at the lives of two Buddhist monks who live there.

It’s quite a long and dusty drive out there (sorry James – I was in front!), but the dirt track goes through some beautiful untouched scenery, up amongst the hills!

On arrival, we were shown around the large property, which is surrounded by national parks. After a walk of about 15 minutes, with a monk chatting along side us, we came to a “sala” or meditation hall. We were given a brief talk about  some basic principles of Buddhism.

Rick digging trenches. "Watch out for the worms!"

We then went back to the main kitchen area, and offered food to the monks and received a blessing before we ate our own food. I think it was mainly vego, but everyone thought it was pretty good!

Then we had a few hours of helping out the monks. We helped them dig trenches to lay poly pipe that directs water to the monks little huts in the forest that they use fore meditating. The monks aren’t allowed to dig the earth, as they may accidentally kill a living being. So, we helped them out.

Tom looking busy. Mazi... just looking?

After that, we cleaned up and went to a talk in the sala. The talk consisted of principles of Buddhism, and also included a short (15 minute!!) meditation. Try not doing anything for 15 minutes – it’s along time! The Venturers seemed to get it though! We then went for a quick stroll and looked at a bodhi tree, which is a tree that is sacred to Buddhism.

All up, it was a very interesting day for our Venturers. These monks live a very secluded life, yet seem very content with their lot. We’ll go there again if anyone is keen!

Romeventure – A weekend of excellent awesomeness!!


Some lucky contestants get to eat "Iron Gut" food!

Ok, here’s a late post about the weekend that was Romeventure!

Well, we arrived at Cataract Scout Camp on the Friday night, after a brief stop over at Campbelltown Maccas (the staple diet of many venturers!). We pulled into the camp and set up the giant tarp that became our kitchen and lounge area for the Romeventure weekend.

I awoke at 6am the next morning with a burning sensation on my nipple (I hate writing the word “nipple”). A small black thing ran across my chest! I cornered it and realised it was a red back spider. I caught it, and spent the next 48 hours holding my “knipple”, a lot of my time was spent curled up like a cocoon in a hammock. It was just a burning sensation, and made me feel tired all weekend. So I was pretty useless all weekend as far as participating in all the action going down.

Everyone else though had a great time though!!! The Rovers from Berowra and MCMK did a great job with the food all weekend!

Here’s just some of the things that the guys and girls (about 150 or so)  got up to:
– Round robin activities. Sounds naff, and some of it was, but there were some great and challenging things to do.
– Swimming in a dam. Kinda like swimming in pea soup really! For some strange reason.
– Trivia night. those wacky Rovers know how to put a party on!
– Disco. Party hard, party hard, party hard!!
– Waterslide – I didn’t see this but heard it was excellent!
– Iron Gut. This is a challenge where contestants have to eat multiple courses of disgusting food without “singing a rainbow”. Some the courses included, slices of bread soaked (and I mean soaked!) in olive oil, and a caesar salad. The ceasar salad sounds ok, but not when it’s been blended into a juice – complete with anchovies!

All up, it was an awesome weekend and our guys from Mount Colah Mount Kuring Gai and Berowra had a great time!!! A big thank you again, must go out to the Rovers for catering for us!

Cheers, Mazza

Tie Dye Night Goes Off!

Tom from Berowra Venturers had a great idea. Why not have a tie dye night? Berowra Venturers and Mount Colah Venturers would travel back in time where peace, love and incense where all that mattered.

Sounds exciting – and to a leader, sounds scary! The thought of our Venturers going home with blue or green faces that stay with them for rest of their life had me concerned – this could be as bad as looking like an Avatar warrior for the rest of your life!!

However, the night was really successful, and no one ended up with permanent die stains on them  – where they shouldn’t be.  Apart from blue hands, which you can live with, everything went smoothly.

For some strange reason, the Venturers that didn’t come prepared, had the most success! Tie dyeing is a “random” process, and something that’s fairly unpredictable. Tom seems to have mastered it though, and he knew how to make spirals and diagonal freaky patterns!

It was a great night for all the Venturers from MCMK and Berowra! I reckon we should do it again one night!

Painting Working Bee – Thanks!

A big thanks to the guys and girl Venturers and Rovers, families and friends of the MCMK Scout Group who helped out with the recent working bee.

Did you know, that volunteering your time for helping out with the scout group will contribute to the Venturers Queens Scout Award?

Painting our new hall an enormous job, but it’s getting there. Stay tuned for more updates on when you can next help out! The rumours are that the new scout hall will be officially opened in late February!

Our Venturers go Snorkelling

Venturers from the Mount Colah Mount Kuring Gai Scout Group and Berowra Scout Group, spending a lazy Sunday snorkelling at Shelly Beach, just south of Manly.

Although the water was freezing, there were still a few fish to be seen, although not as many as we’d hoped! In recent trips to this location, we have seen 6 or more dusky whaler sharks, each one about 4 feet long!

Initially we were to visit the Water Works at Manly, however, we realised that it was a bit below our age group!

To get to Manly, we caught the train and bus in, and the ferry and train back! It was a big day, but well worth it! Next time, when it’s warmer in the water, we’ll visit Clovelly, where you can pat the large blue gropers!!

Venturers to Visit to a Thai Forest Monastery

Mount Colah Mount Kuring Gai  Venturers have been invited to visit a Thai Buddhist monastery!! This monastery is run by Thai forest monks, and is located about 20 minutes north of Wiseman’s Ferry, at a place called Wat Buddha Damma

This is a real cultural experience and should not be missed. For those of you who would like to put this as one of your Queen Scout activities, this will go under the Ideals, pg. 56 in the Venturer Record Book.

These monks have an amazing life, ie. they live by 227 rules, and teach how to live a simple life. They live 15 minutes from a main road, within the bush!

You can see what they do here on their website. Vicki and I also made a video of them once which you can find here.

They will be available for group visiting from mid February all next year. Please let me know if you are interested, so I can have it organised – as they provide food.

This is a great opportunity to see something really different! It’s cheaper than going to Thailand!!!


Deep Pass 2010 – Our Last Camp for this Year!

This is a great way to end the year. For those that haven’t been to Deep Pass before, it’s an amazing camp up in the Blue Mountains near Newnes. It’s on the 17th to 19th of December – so have those days free if you can!

This is a fantastic place for swimming, canyoning, caving and abseiling, and there is a fantastic camping ground where you can just chill out. Getting there is easy, it’s a drive up to the mountains, and a 1km walk to the campsite.

For those of you that don’t have your Venturing Skills Award, this is a great opportunity to get it. This award is the basic award for Venturing. Once you have this you are able to participate in Dragonskin and other activities required for your Queen Scout Award.

The Venturing Skills Award consists of these 3 items:

–       First Aid
–       Bushwalking
–       Have a basic knowledge of the award scheme.

Check your Venturer Scout Record Book for more details, and go over the things that you need to know. Contact your leaders if you have any questions.

Also, check your emails for more specific departure times and  specific details for the Deep Pass camp.

See ya’ll there!!