Certificate IV Outdoor Recreation

River Crossings

On Tuesday the 11th of September the Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation students donned their instructor hats and took the ‘Nunatak’ Adventure Guiding Class for a day of River Crossing training.

The Derwent River (at the Plenty Railway Bridge) provided an excellent setting to practice a variety of solo and group crossing techniques, as well as whitewater swimming.  The infamous artificial strainer was set up in two locations, but it didn’t quite live up to its fearsome reputation as all the Adventure Guiding students negotiated it with ease.  The day ended with a convoluted “scenario” involving a broken femur, asthma, a daring white-water rescue and an impending job interview (which the leader thought was real!).

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Navigation Skills

Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation students hit the bush again recently.  The vibes were high and the snow flakes were falling.  The students spent the four days consolidating off track Navigation skills such as walking on a bearing, interpreting micro features in the landscape and observation of vegetation changes.

The group split in to two teams, and were lucky to be accompanied by Instructor and legend Sue Beaumont and Teachers Assistant and champion Ash Kestle.

Introduction to Abseiling

In late Autumn, five Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation students, their instructor Kim Ladiges, and a whole heap of climbing gear squeezed into two cars and headed to Freycinet National Park.

With minds full of knots and three-point anchor systems from a pre trip workshop, the students were well prepared for the newly appointed introduction to abseiling short course.  Perched safely on the gleaming granite cliffs of Tasmania’s infamous east coast the students learnt how to apply their knowledge of three-point anchor systems, whilst ensuring personal and group safety parameters on cliff edges.  They also touched on briefings, and learnt how to fit harnesses and helmets.  Not to forget the unexpected schooling on the dexterity and ingenuity of possums.

Special thanks to Kim Ladiges whose experience, teaching style and empathy enabled all the students to cross some personal barriers and move closer to being abseil guides.  Although they weren’t impressed he couldn’t extent daylight hours so that they could stay on the cliffs longer. 

Off-Track Navigation

The Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation students recently headed to the East Coast for two days of Off-track Navigation.

In the Wielangta State Forest, students honed their navigation skills in challenging (scrubby undergrowth) yet beautiful floristic structure with large eucalyptus towering above.  We had originally planned a four-day trip to the Central Plateau, however a gale warning prevented that.

Students and instructors also had to deal with the giant leeches.  Yeech!

Thanks to all students that attended and Renee and Sue for imparting their navigation knowledge.

Mountain Biking

Last month, the Certificate IV Outdoor Recreation students got kitted up and hit the Tassie Mountain Biking trails for the first time this year.

Four excellent days were spent learning the fundamentals of Mountain Biking in a guiding context, these skills were tested with some laps around Glenorchy and Clarence Mountain Bike park.  The trip ended on a high consolidating some of our new-found skills on the Clarence Mountain Bike Park PUMP TRACK!

Special thanks to Gemma Gooley and Richard Guy for a very well planned first week on the trails!

White Water Kayaking

Last week, students of the Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation course took to the Derwent River, followed by the Leven River in the north of Tasmania to tackle a week of whitewater kayaking.

Students spent the first two days developing their white water skills on the Derwent River such as reading whitewater, ferry gliding, exiting/entering eddies and much more.  Over the rest of the week, students were given the opportunity to execute their newly learnt skills and push their limits kayaking down the Leven River.

Highlights of the week included the satisfaction of improving throughout the week, group bonding and Ciara calmly waving and accepting her fate of being washed into a hole (a white water feature).  The students were lucky enough to be instructed by one of Tasmania’s most experienced and greatest instructors Nate Welch, special thanks also goes to Technical Assistant, Matt Smith.

Flat-Water Skills

Earlier this month the TasTAFE Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation students engaged in teaching and instruction of their flat-water skills to Kingston High School Year 9 students.  The teachings took place on the Huon River at Huonville Esplanade.  The student’s instruction was supervised by TasTAFE instructors, Nate Welsh and Matt Smith.

The Kingston High Students where able to learn to be comfortable in the kayaks as well as learn a number of strokes.  The students were also entertained by engaging in a number of games, including ‘bulrush’ and ‘kayak polo’.

The weather behaved itself for most of the day with a slight shower in the afternoon.  TasTAFE students were able to counteract the current in the river by starting kayak polo upstream near the bridge and drifted down to the jetty as they played.

Fun was had by all as some of the keen students attempted to Eskimo roll at the end of the day whilst others students battled to simply keep the boats going straight in the water.  This provided TasTAFE students ample opportunity to specifically target technique and practice in aiding struggling students.