Adventure Club

17th- 21st AUGUST, 2016

Camp type : OrientationProgramme
Camp dates : 17 august to 21 august
Camp site : National rock climbing centre, ramanagara
Participants : Monica y
                      Disha p
                      Krithika m
                      Helina h yeptho

Ramanagara, at an elevation of 2450 feet, has a wide range of rocks and hills proving a lot of scope for adventurous activities. A five-days-trip to the National Rock Climbing Centre at Basavanpura, organised by the GETHNAA organisation truly served its motto of inducing a spirit of adventure among the youths.

DAY 1:
We started off from JNC around 7 am on Wednesday, 17th August and took three consecutive buses which led us to Ramanagara following which we reached the National Rock Climbing Centre in Basavanpura, through an autorickshaw at 9.30 am. We were provided with breakfast after with we were asked to assemble in the ground in our track suits. The camp started with a brief introduction of ourselves and the trainers and continued with some funny refreshing games and activities. We re-assembled after a break of about 1 hour and joined the theory classes held which was regarding the different equipment used in rock climbing:

1. Static rope- It is considered ass the lifeline of a climber. The rope is made up of two layers: core and the sheath. It has a breaking strength of 2200 kg.

2. Dynamic rope- a dynamic rope looks similar to a static rope. It has an inner layer called the core and an outer layer called the sheath. Its breaking strength is 1800 kg.

3. Tape sling - They may be used as anchors, to extend an anchor or to reduce rope drag. It has a breaking strength of 2200 kg.

4. Carabiner- A carabiner is a device used to quickly connect two components. They have a breaking capacity of 2500 kg. Carabiners are usually made up of aluminium alloy. They a basically of two types: Plane carabiners and screw guage carabiners.

5. Descender- Descenders are also called 'figure of 8'. A descender and a carabiner together form the Belay device, which is nothing but a mechanical brake device used to control rope while belaying. It is made up of aluminium alloy.

6. Ascenders- They are also known as 'jumars', named after a popular brand. Ascenders are the mechanical devices for ascending on a rope.

7. Metans- They are also called belay gloves. They are ususally made up of leather or a synthetic substitute. Metans are used to avoid friction and rope burn.

8. Harness- A harness is an attachment between the body and the rope. It has two types of loops: master loop and gear loops. The rope is tied to the master loop of the harness. Gear loops are used to carry gears. It has a breaking capacity of 1500 kg. the different types of harness are: seat harness, chest harness and body harness. Pulley, rock pitons, chalknet, excentrix, nutkey, racksac, first aid box, helmet etc., are some of the other materials required for rock climbing.

After a short break of 15 minutes, we assembled back at the ground for another demonstrative class on how to spread a tent:

Points to remember while building a camping tent-
Choose a flat surface.
Make sure you are far enough from any water bodies, to avoid flood.
Avoid places where there are animal footprints.
Never take any inflamable objects or sharp objects inside the tent.

The day ended with some singing and dancing and lots of fun.We were let off at 10.45 pm, after being intructed to assemble sharp at 5.30 am the next day.

The facilities we were provided with are worth mentioning. We were given neat individual beds with set of bed spread, pillow with cover, plates and a glass each, along with a locker to keep our belongings safe.

DAY 2:
All of us assembled at 5.30 am and we began with jogging up till a hill top and positioned ourselves for warm up exercises. After a good workout which went on till 8 am, we were given some time to relax and watch the scenery, after which one of the trainers led us back to the campsite and we were given a break of about 1 hour to freshen up and finish with our breakfast.

We assembled at 9.30 am and walked into the bamboo forest for bouldering. Since the forest was a government reserved area and declared as a vulture nesting zone, we had to be very cautious of our moves and maintained complete silence so as to not disturb the wilderness.

Bouldering: Bouldering is a form of rock climbing without using ropes or harnesses. Boulders refer to rocks that are less than 15 feet in height. This activity includes two people: a climber and a spotter. A climber is the person who climbs up the boulder while the spotter stands at the bottom and guards the climber, till the climber reaches the top of the boulder safe. Bouldering includes a set of commands followed by the climber as well as the spotter. The climber is supposed to alert the spotter with the command 'climbing' for which the spotter responds 'climb on', meaning he is ready guarding the climber. Once the climber reaches the top of the boulder, he is supposed to inform the spotter with the command 'I am safe' for which the spotter responds with the command 'belay off', which completes the activity.

All the participants successfully completed their task of bouldering different routes: from easy to difficult levels of boulders. We marched back through the bamboo forest to the campsite and reached the dorm around 2.30 pm and were given a break of about an hour for lunch.

We assembled in the ground at 4 pm in the evening for some theory classes on different types of knots. We were taught 20 types of knots and their uses, which were quiet easy: 1. Thumb knot
2. Double thumb knot
3. Nose knot
4. Water knot
5. Reef knot
6. Thief knot
7. Granny knot
8. Half hitch
9. Cow hitch
10. Clove hitch
11. Constrictor hitch
12. Bow line
13. Figure of 8 knot
14. Figure of 8 loop
15. Butterfly knot
16. Fishermen's knot
17. Prusik hitch
18. Chain senet
19. Draw hitch
20.Sheet bend

DAY 3:
The day started with the same jogging and warm up exercises like the previous day. Today the exercise was rigorous than yesterday. We did a lot of pumping exercise which was very important for the day's activity- chimney climbing and rock climbing. We were let free for an hour after the exercise, for breakfast and getting ready for the day's activity.

We started off from the campsite at 10 am, to the nearby forest. We had to carry the all the tools for this activity and were given a rack sac each, to carry to the forest. Water bottles and cap were a must-to-carry especially because the day as too hot. After a walk of 20 minutes, we reached the spot and got into action!

Chimney climbing: climbing through a rock cleft with vertical sides mostly parallel, large enough to fit the climber's body into it, is called chimney climbing. To climb such a structure, the climber is supposed to use his head, back, palm and feet to apply opposite pressure on the vertical walls. The feet and the palm must be placed alternatey each time the climber moves a steps forward. Chimney climbing can be done with rope or without rope. This activity includes a spotter, a belayer and the climber.

We tried our hand in both the ways and the trainers helped us complete the task by encouraging us with each step.

Rock climbing: This was the next step of bouldering. We climbed up a rock which was about 35 feet high. We put on the harness and climbed up the rock with the same techniques and commands used for bouldering. There was a spotter spotting the climber and belayin

After climbing up till the target, we had to climb down with the support of the rope, putting all our weight on the belay and balancing with our feet, leaning back as much as possible, for a good balance. With short and firm steps we climbed down the rock successfully.

We walked back to the camp site at 2.30 pm and dispersed for lunch after which we re-assembled at 4.00 pm for the next activity.

Jumaring: Jumaring is the technique climbers use to ascend a rope. It requires two ascending devices, one for each hand, and a nylon ladder made by a loop of rope, called 'aiders', for the feet. The climber fits into a harness and a helmet and sets off for jumaring, where he must lift himself with the help of the ascenders and the aiders. Once he reaches the target point, the belay tied to a nearby tree is freed for the climber to slide back to the bottom.

DAY 4:
The day started with putting ourselves in power saving mode! We walked to the hill top, instead of jogging. The exercise was very light and we settled down for some group discussion on our experiences about the camp so far. The open, natural auditorium there(as it was called), resembled a mini col0sseum of Rome. I regret for not getting a chance to capture a pic of that spot.

One of the trainers at our exercise spot on the hill top
We reached the dorm at around 9.30 am and gathered for breakfast. The day's activity was trecking up the hill that is seen at the background in the previous picture. We had to pack our bags with as much water as possible, a cap, glucose, sunscreen lotions and full of energy. We were provided with packed lunch which we had planned to have on top of the hill.

We started at 11 am from the camp site and marched to the base of the hill within half an hour. We rested there for about 15 minutes to store back our energy to climb up the giant hill, called the 'handi gundhi betta'

A view of handi gundhi betta on our way to the base of the hill
We started our trek with 3 trainers leading us to the hill top with full of excitement and energy, which all went down within 30 minutes of the trek, because of the extremely hot sun over us. We had to keep sipping our water every 5 minutes to keep ourselves hydrated. We took short rests every 15 minutes and climbed up the really tiring route of the hill.

A picture from the place of halt on half the way to the top of the hill

The route we climbed up was rated a difficult one, with really steep and threatening rocks to climb by. The predicted time for climbing up was approximately 2 hours 15 minutes, but I can't believe or explain how we managed to reach the top of the hill by 1.15 pm! (within 1 hour 45 minutes).

A view from top of the hill

A view from our dining spot of the day!

After spending a satisfactory amount of time on the hill top, picnicking, singing, dancing, watching the scenery and clicking pictures, it was time for us to bid bye to the hill top and prepared to trek down the hill. climbing down the hill was through a very easy but steepy route. The route was so steep that we couldn't step forward without a supporting balance, so the trainer instructed us to form a chain link and support each other. That is when we realised the team spirit among us. Each one of us were very concerned about each other's step and within 40 minutes we were back at the foot of the hill.

Climbing down the hill in chain link with one of the trainers leading us.

A snap of the hill at the end of our trek

We walked back to the camp site and swung into our beds with full of dehydration, tiredness and tanning. We assembled at the ground at 6 pm in the evening for our next activity.

River crossing and ziplining:

We were done with the day's activity and settled for some fun after having our dinner. As it was going to be our last night in the camp site, we were allowed unlimited fun and enjoyment, performing anything and everything we knew, and laughing our lives out! We went to bed at around 11.30 pm.

We began with a slow walk to the regular hill top and did the minimum workout possible as we were very tired of the previous day's activities. We again settled for some fun as it was the last day of our camping. We played truth or dare which I would consider the best part of the whole camp. We were by now feeling very much comfortable with each other and the fun multiplied when even the trainers joined in the game.

We re-assembled at 10.30 am after finishing with our breakfast, for the last and final activity of our camp. We walked into the same forest where we did the rock climbing, for rappling.

The trainers assigned us with the highest spot for rappling, which we successfully completed.

Rappling: rappling refers to a controlled descend of a vertical drop, such a rock face, using a rope. It includes a bellayer at the top, a rappler, and a spotter at the bottom. It includes the similar commands as of that in rock climbing.

We were assigned with climbing down a rock which was about 70 feet high, which was frightening from top but seemed to be with lot of fun as we got into the task.

The activity went on till 2.30 pm, after which we hurried back to the camp site with hunger and settled for a grand lunch joined by the trainers as well. We had a lunch with a lot of chatting and fun unlike the previous days.

We were let free after the lunch, to pack our bags and leave to our respective home. We re-assembled for the last time, to share our experiences with each other and to formally bid farewell to each other. We were mixed feelings of happiness that we were finally returning home after 5 days, as well as the feeling of going to miss each other and the activities which challenged us every day. We finally left the centre at 5.30 pm and headed back to Bangalore.

This adventure camp really taught us a lot. It gave us a new experience and situations of difficulty which we had to face individually and completing each task successfully built a new level of self confidence among ourselves and a belief in ourselves that we will surely be able to face any hard situations in life hereafter. I would like to thank each and every person who provided us with this opportunity.