Rayner Trophy 2008 Report

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Route: Chapman's Peak and Hout Bay Beach

Winners - 2nd Somerset West

Rayner 2008 - with the theme 'Heavy Metal Magnates' - has come and gone. The route this year took teams from Chapman's Peak, with a long slog up Noordhoek Peak to the Silvermine Dam for water activities and supper, followed by a night descent to Tokai for some overnighting. Next morning up the Elephants Eye trail and along the contour path to Vlakkenberq and East Fort, ending with water activities on the Hout Bay Beach.

Some 25 teams participated, with 2nd Somerset West coming out tops with 270 points, or 49%. Following were 2nd Fish Hoek and 1 Durbanville.

The scores were not great, but then the competition was designed as a strategy of choosing which tests to leave out and which to tackle. To this end, the tests and scores and time required was provided to each team at the start of the competition. But the reason why the scores were so low was because Scouts do not read instructions! Quite a few teams only read their instructions at midnight on Sunday, to discover that there were no night-time ST As. Another consequence of not reading the instructions, was that by the time the teams had climbed Noordhoek Peak and done the first four bases they must have had their brains blown out: bases 2-4 were designed to be skipped to allow the more astute teams to get ahead: they took time, counted few points and were tough enough to quail the most resolute: very few teams recovered and most looked drained and shell-shocked at the top near Noordhoek Peak.

On Sunday: 3 teams scored full marks for breakfast, and two teams completed all the STAs. Several teams stormed ahead and a lot more teams scored good marks

The Beach activities were designed as spectator sports, but the water was a bit choppy, curtailing rescues to within the breakers. Perhaps the worst performed tests were Fire emergency (13%) and the Panoramic sketch (14% - mean of 8 teams that attempted it), but Weather (24%) and Signalling ·(23% - method of choice in dark), were not much better. But at least half the teams got full marks for the Scout Promise (although only 8 got full marks for the Law), with Woggle plaiting searing the most full marks. Knots were great (80% for the 17 teams attempting the base), as was Stealth (80%) and Tripod Construction (79%), although constructing a rope ladder between ropes only achieved 49% for the 15 teams that attempted it. The most scary thing was the amount of Scouts on the mountain with 200ml water containers instead of 2l for the day: Hyperthermia, Heat Stroke, Dehydration - if we did not have a free water base on the summit we might well have had to airlift some Scouts out! (Just this week a mugger died on Table Mountain from dehydration! )

Many thanks to Nigel Forshaw for helping to plan the competition and organizing the logistics, Nimmy Abrahams for making sure that everything was organized and ran smoothly, Shantel Kent for the catering, and all the other judges for making this competition a success. With almost 30 judges, this must rank as one of the best turnouts ever on a Rayner! SAN Parks were superb at helping organize the event - the paperwork is worth it! Thanks too to the teams - hope you learned a lot and had fun. Model answers, pictures and an analysis of past Rayners will be available on CD from Headquarters from late April.

Chief Judge: Tony Rebelo