Duke of Edinburgh

Cairns/Far North Queensland Trip

Last holidays a group of 13 students and 2 staff were lucky enough to participate in a Duke of Edinburgh sponsored trip to Cains and Far North Queensland. The eight-day trip involved hiking, camping, sight seeing and Indigenous Cultural Tours. Well done to Kiara, Violet, Caitlin, Indianna, Nicky, Harry, Ben, Levi, Miah, Angelika, Teagan, Toby and Zac on your positivity, behaviour and respect shown throughout the trip.  Emerald Secondary College would like to thank the Duke of Edinburgh Award for their sponsorship that allowed students to gain this fantastic experience.

Two student reflections are included below:

“The FNQ trip was by far the most challenging and rewarding thing I have ever experienced. The trip provided me with amazing, lifelong memories that I will cherish forever. The trip consisted of many hikes; Stoney Creek to Kuranda, Baldy-Yabi circuit, Lambs Head Range and Turtle Rock hike. To add to this, we spent 2 days around camp at Emerald Creek, learning skills on how to read a map, navigation and Rogaining, we then participated in a rogaining competition. We spent a lot of our afternoons swimming in the nearby creek, at Emerald Creek Falls and at a Crater Lake. We visited the Curtain Fig Tree, which was pretty incredible. For the last 2 nights we stayed at Cairns Colonial Resort, we spent a morning with Kuku Yalangi people learning about their culture and putting some into practice where we went spearing crabs, cracking open coconuts, and making necklaces out of shells we found on the beach. In the afternoon we made our way to Mossman Gorge, we did a tour with the Yalada people. The Yalada tour was by far one of my favourite moments, I enjoyed learning about how the indigenous people interacted with the environment. Overall, this experience was a once in a lifetime opportunity, I learnt skills that I will keep with me forever and met people that have become lifelong friends. I will miss the great views after a steep hike, all the great people that we met along our trip and the laughs and memories we made together.”

“The Cairns trip was a great experience, and I enjoyed every moment of it. There was a lot of memories made that will last a lifetime with the friends that I have made. With leaving from school at 4 a.m. I thought I would sleep on the plane and the bus, but I didn’t because I was too excited. The first day of walking was tough because it was humid and raining, we were not used to it. The Rogaining was an activity that was a lot more fun than I thought it would be. I learnt how to read a map well and how to use a compass to take bearings. Lambs Head was the biggest walk that we did, gaining lots of elevation on the way up and losing a lot to get back down. The view was totally worth it though, with walking through such pretty dry and wet forest. Turtle Rock was a smaller climb with also a great view of all the other mountains. I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with the local indigenous people and learning how they live. I enjoyed learning about the didgeridoo and all the types of boomerangs. I now want to get a didgeridoo and learn how to play the fabulous instrument. What was also great was I was one of the only few to spear a crab (after being taught how to hunt these by the local indigenous tribe). It was great hearing all the aboriginal stories through Mossman gorge and how they used the surrounding resources. The views and the waterfalls were all amazing and I wish I could have more time there. I deepened my relationships with the people I already knew and made new friends throughout the trip. What a great experience!!!”

Shane Closter – Duke of Edinburgh Co-ordinator

Skip to content