Updates from our 2022 Expeditions

By British Exploring Society,
charity update


25th August

This week the Trainee Leaders planned their own mission from Base Camp. They took with them two Leaders who acted as their group members whilst all TLs took the opportunity to develop their mountain leading skills. The weather was perfect and allowed the group to access the beautiful scenery of the area and even reach an altitude of 4000m. The Trainee Leaders developed their knowledge of altitude ascent profiles, looking after team needs, dynamic risk assessments and having a flexible plan!

Pictures show the trainee leaders together behind the flag and a summit snickers with the group.



23rd August

For the last mission into the national park the Yukon 2022 5 week expeditioners were challenged by the Chief Leader to present back to everyone at the end of their journeys 

The challenge was to draw inspiration from the Australian aboriginal peoples concepts of Songlines, epic stories of mystical worlds of the dream time that explain routes across the landscapes. 

The two Fires ( and the Trainee Leaders) presented their words in a number of ways but were enthralling and entertaining.

Their last night drew to a close with a shared dinner in an almost empty base camp and an epic Lemon Jousting tournament!


22nd August

A blog from Tutun Fire

Monumental Scene

Sun beams on the mountain side

Gold dusted verdance 


19th August

A blog from Fire 1

The first expedition has come and gone and we’re already on our second! Not everything is dandy though and the rainy weather has forced us to work as a team more than ever!

We hiked up Ben Lawes today, the 7th tallest mountain in the UK, and the views were even greater than we imagined.

We’re having a fun time altogether (especially when we’re in our tents chilling). Looking forward to our upcoming canoeing expedition!


16th August

A blog from Flame – Fire 2

Another successful day canoeing!

Watching the sunset on the lakeside, practicing mindfulness, building stone towers and writing a beautiful poem and artwork to go in the fire journal.

Excited for what’s to come! 😊

A blog from Killin’s Beevers – Fire 3

Searching for fauna. We found frogs in this video. Lizards handed around. Raptor activity – a frog with no head and a mole dropped on the path with raptor claw marks.

Lots of love Killin’s Beever’s.

Sohaib, Jay and Miller. At the top of Sohaib & Miller’s first munro. The rest of the team were chilling in the cool below.


15th August

A blog from Tutun Fire- dated 11th August.

After a week of thunder, lightening, hail and some sunny days too, Tutun Fire is ready for a third expedition from Base Camp.

This week we’ve summitted a 3600m peak, had our first pizza from our DIY pizza oven and each had our own solo where we could spend some alone time out of Base Camp.

Today we head in search of a hidden lake in the mountains. Find below our perfect camping hot chocolate recipe:

  • 1 part cocoa powder
  • 4 parts milk powder
  • 5 sugar cubes
  • 1 tsp honey

Mix with cold water to form a paste. Fill with hot water.


14th August

A blog from the Pack of Unicorns Fire.

We had a great time on our first expedition! At first we didn’t think we would make it but we showed resilience with the help of British Exploring Society Leaders, worked as a team, and pushed ourselves to reach the top. We’ve learned a lot and are looking forward to our next expedition.


13th August

A Fire Journal entry from Grace at the start of the expedition.

Today is the first day we left Base Camp and explored other regions and water sources. We found a water source and named it cow crown creek and found an entire horse hoof on the way.

We found a campsite at around 5pm and relaxed and ate dinner. After dinner we were visited by Aynora who lived on the other side of the bank. Flora had a mandarin conversation and we took many photos.


11th August

Blog from Aquila Fire

On the 4th of August we set off on a great canoe adventure!!

The weather instantly turned against us with much wind which was very challenging. we had to work hard together. However we were rewarded with a relaxed afternoon of playing uno.

The next day we hit the water seeing beaver lodges, watching the sunrise and reflections of the mountains on the Lake and singing many songs to keep us all together.

After arriving, the Fire had the opportunity to rest, and many of us expanded our bush craft skills by learning to whittle a spoon.

As part of our expedition butternut squash challenge, we made it into a pasta sauce for Chris, our Paddle Leader to mark against the other Fires squash meals!!!

Poem by Amy from Aquila fire

majestic mountains surround

forest lurks around

swimming in yellow Mountain Avon ( local flower 🌼)

we are watched by ravens

searching for bears

we eat tinned pears

DNG 2022

11th August

Hello from a slightly warmer but much windier Iceland!

After the cold weather in the first week, the three Fires have all headed north, visiting the waterfalls and then all making their way over to the mountain, Sellandsfjall. At nearly 1000 metres, this is quite an achievement. As I write this, one Fire has been up to the top, celebrating by doing the macarena on the summit! We have had to delay the other two Fires ascent due to strong winds but we have a weather window tomorrow to hopefully get the remaining fires up the mountain.

Once they have completed the mountain, all three Fires will be slowly making their way to Lake Myvatan where the expedition will be culminating and we will be reflecting as a group on how much everyone has achieved, as teams and as individuals. They might not quite see it yet, but all the Leaders have seen how much every Young Explorer has developed and how they aren’t the same people who started the trip. We are all very proud of them.

With the warmer weather, we have been able to do lots of kit and personal washing…which when you use glacial water, always helps, as it is quite fresh! The challenge we are facing at the minute is the strong winds, it is not dangerous but just makes all things involved in camping and hiking more challenging. From water, cooking, putting up your tent to having a poo with a view! Which by the way, is something all the Young Explorer’s have fully embraced.

Dan, Chief Leader


8th August

A blog from Salmo Fire, compiled by Jess

” in the first 2 weeks Salmo Fire have: summitted Gopher Mountain, took a dip in St elias Kate, closely observed by porcupines, identified many species of flowers in the alpine meadows, ascended a snowy valley, successfully crossed creeks and camped on a plateau of Mount Barker.

We have all learned so much about diversity of the land, the cultures as well as each other. With another 3 weeks to go, we will have time for further exploration and hopefully by the end we, will have even mastered cooking for 12 on 4 small Trangias!!!”


5th August

Fire 2 – Kamaz

We were on our first tour from Base Camp and reached 3000m!

Being invited into a homely yurt and sharing their food.

Finally we found three new water sources and saw marmots and shrews.


4th August

Fires are back at Base Camp after their first tour and are heading out again tomorrow. Everyone is well and enjoying the beautiful landscape and the interaction with locals.

Fire 1 – Tutun

Our first exploration was a success. We met a few Kyrgz locals and were invited for tea; they were incredibly hospitable and we had the opportunity to sleep in their yurt and experience some unique cultural rituals, such as the chai.

We climbed up to 3,200m and were escorted by a local who taught us to forage.

DNG 2022

4th August

Hello from cold and windy Iceland!

The expedition is going well but has had some challenges in the last few days with the weather. The advance team has been here for almost two weeks now and when we arrived it was glorious. A bit of chill on the wind but at times it was shorts and t-shirt weather.

Unfortunately this seemed to change the moment that our young people landed in this amazing country. However, to their absolute credit the Young Explorer’s have been constantly smiling and embracing this weather and finding ways to enjoy the crazy landscape. We are optimistic that the weather might break on Thursday and even be warmish by the weekend so that we can ascend the Mountain to our east .

We have three Fires out and about at the minute. Two have been down by the Volcano, Askja, for the last few days after walking through the largest desert in Europe to get there. With the third up by the waterfall, looking at the dramatic landscape but also how it has been created very recently (in geological terms Iceland is barely a toddler!) but fire and force.

They are now swapping locations, which is a few days walk for each Fire. On their travels they will make use of some of the mountain huts to wash, warm up and dry their clothes before continuing on to their next destination.

Incredibly proud of all of the Young Explorers that are doing a stellar job. Here are some of their comments and thoughts so far.

‘Exhilarating’, ‘Cold, wet but sunny’, ‘Picturesque and Breathtaking!’, ‘Having a great time’ and ‘missing mums and dogs’! So take from that what you will, hopefully the weather will improve soon and maybe next week they will miss dads and cats!

Dan, Chief Leader

DNG 2022

3rd August

Young Explorers have headed out on a few adventures. Weather did turn a bit cold and wet but the team are expecting milder weather in the next couple of days.

Fire 3 are filming their own Good Morning Iceland, where they’ve been filming little segments to create their own mockumentary of their experience so far.


3rd August

Fires have undertaken their first missions and moving on to further challenges.

The mountains offer so much for exploration, wildlife sightings and learning. The Fires have been busy camera trapping, doing biological studies, water sapling and building their teams.

So far teams have seen red squirrels, chipmunks, porcupines, beavers, a few bear sightings, lots of tracks of exciting possibilities so all boding well for further study.

Alongside their missions, all Fires are becoming creative cooks in Base Camp with fresh bread, pizzas and fajitas, chips and epic curries. Everyone’s is looking forward to the cakes!!!



2nd August

A beautiful sunny morning in the Scottish hills.

Young Explorers are doing a combination of paddling, knowledge projects and exploring the hills.

One of the science projects they have been doing is to measure the acidity of their soap compared to the water in Loch Tay.


30th July 

All our Young Explorers and Leaders are underway, studying the local wildlife, mapping their journeys, recording the weather and working towards personal and physical summits.

New friendships for life are being created in each Fire and everyone is embracing the highs and lows of expedition life.

There will be more updates available next week and we wanted to thank our Leaders who are doing an incredible job supporting our Young Explorers. Due to the remoteness of some of our expeditions, sending images is a little more tricky so we are doing what we can.

DNG 2022

28th July

Our DNG Young Explorers landed in Iceland yesterday and have made their way to Base Camp. This is one of the waterfalls that the Fires will have the opportunity to see.

Our Base Camp team have explored the area and are ready to share ideas of where the Young Explorers can start their adventures.


27th July

Our Young Explorers departed from Heathrow to Iceland and Canadian Yukon today. There were some very excited young people and Leaders. And so the adventure begins.

Base Camp teams are ready for their arrival and looking forward to welcoming them to their home for the next couple of weeks.


26th July

Our Scottish Base Camp team has been getting Base Camp ready for our Young Explorers who arrive this evening. Tents are being pitched, ration packs counted, and fresh food sorted.

Young Explorers are currently traveling across the country to meet a group of their Leaders in Edinburgh and catch a coach to Base Camp near Loch Tay.


25th July

The Advance Party for Canadian Yukon has been working hard to set up Base Camp for the arrival of the Young Explorers. First group arrived on Saturday and will be off into the field for 5 weeks of adventure, knowledge building, science and multi media projects.

3 week Young Explorers fly on Wednesday to start their adventure.

15th April

Our Young Explorers on UK Explorers Spring have finished their 12 day expedition, overcoming challenges together to empower and equip them with the courage, skills, resilience and determination to make the most of their futures. Thank you to everyone who helped make this programme happen.

British Exploring Society will be returning to the Scottish Highlands later in the summer for our Hartz Scottish Explorers expedition.

10th April

All of the Fires have been venturing out from basecamp over the weekend, Young Explorers working together with their Leaders to plan routes and find locations to camp overnight. While out in the hills, they’ll be carrying out science and/or media projects which may involve learning about the wildlife they encounter or using art or poetry to reflect on their adventures so far.

Pictured is Fire 3 on their way to explore the Devil’s Staircase, a rocky ridge with two Munro summits.

7th April

To get used to wild camping away from basecamp, Young Explorers spent the night in the hills in their Fires (Fire is the British Exploring Society word for a team of around 12 people, as it’s the perfect amount of people that can fit around a camp fire). They’re learning where best to pitch their tents and how to practice ‘leave no trace‘ principles, including planning ahead, disposing of rubbish correctly, and leaving areas as they found them.

5th April

Young Explorers on UK Explorers Spring all arrived safely at basecamp yesterday and have been getting settled today.

They will spend the day getting accustomed to basecamp life and begin training that will provide them with the skills to thrive in their wilderness environment. This includes learning to work as a team in their Fires (groups), learning how to put up their tents, pack their rucksacks, how to cook outside on stoves, how to navigate through their surroundings, and about health and hygiene whilst on expedition.


4th April

Young Explorers aged 14-17 begin their expedition today, travelling from across the UK to the Scottish Highlands where they will spend 12 days camping in the outdoors. Mentored and supported by expert leaders, expedition medics, scientists and adventure professionals, they will explore the natural world around them and learn through adventure, science and media projects.

Read more about UK Explorers Spring

5th March

After a long journey home, our Pinnacle team are now back in the UK.

3rd March

Written by the Pinnacle team

After 8 days on expedition, our Young Explorers have experienced four days on the Trans Siberian railway, travelled 3,900 miles to arrive in Irkutsk and settled into the swing of the ups and downs of expedition life.

Yesterday was the first day that the team was able to set foot on the ice of Lake Baikal. The glossy black surface set against the vast white background of Siberia filled the group with a true sense of awe and adventure. The idea of spending two weeks trekking across its expanse deterred no one.

Unfortunately the team have been wrestling with the growing logistical issues posed by the current conflict in Europe. This has resulted in much of the team kit bags (including food, pulks, tents, stoves, sleeping bags etc.) not arriving in country; therefore the very tough decision has been made to call off the expedition. This is a choice that has not been taken lightly and all potential avenues have been explored up to this point.

The team are very disappointed to not have the chance to begin the trek, however are pleased and grateful to be able to return home safely given the circumstances.

To finish this update Pinnacle Young Explorer Josh Grinham has written a Baikal haiku:

Baikal’s clear blue ice 

Wind whips the snow into twists

A glimpse of Sublime

26th February

Written by the Pinnacle team

British Exploring Society expeditions are designed to facilitate the development of young people through expeditions to challenging environments. Pinnacle – Lake Baikal – is no exception in that regard.

It was fitting, then, that our adventure started nice and early at 2:30am at London Heathrow. From here, we proceeded slowly through check-in, so much so that we were some of the last to board our first flight to Amsterdam. A hurried and nerve-wracking start for the Pinnacle team.

After a slightly more relaxed airport amble in Amsterdam, we boarded our flight to Moscow only to find upon arrival that our luggage hadn’t made it up there. Five hours later and we had made arrangements for our missing luggage to meet us at our final destination: Irkutsk.

Now that was over, we were taken by our friendly guide, Cyril, to see the sights and sounds of Moscow. This included Red Square, the Kremlin, and St Basil’s Cathedral. It was a fantastic end to what, until then, had been a stressful and tiring day.

After our tour of Moscow, we sampled the local cuisine at a cafeteria before boarding the Trans-Siberian Railway at Moscow Yaroslavsky Station.

Since boarding, we have spent the last couple of days acclimatising, adapting to continuously changing time zones (so far, we have passed five time zones since leaving the UK), and working our way through the surprisingly extensive restaurant menu.

Overall, morale since day one has significantly improved. We have read, gamed, and led our way through three days of train travel (the latter of which involved discussing what makes for a high performing team – lots of fun).

We’re looking forward to the next phase of our expedition: training to go out of Lake Baikal.

Until then, da svidania (goodbye in Russian)

24th February

Our Pinnacle team is now on the Trans-Siberian railway heading towards Lake Baikal. They’ll be on the train for the next couple of days.

23rd February

The first of our 2022 expeditions (and our first overseas expedition since 2019) set off in the early hours of this morning, meeting at Heathrow Airport at 3am.

The Pinnacle team will spend the day flying to Moscow via Amsterdam, where they will then start their expedition on the Trans-Siberian railway – the longest railway line in the world – to travel between Moscow and Lake Baikal.

Read more about Pinnacle