A student at Woking High School is part of the winning team in a district hiking competition.

Sixteen-year-old Freddie Sawyer is a member of Horsell Martians Explorers, who recently won the Woking District Lightweight Hiking Competition

Teams from across Woking competed in the event, which took place around Farnham. The teams had to plan their route and food in advance, and sleep overnight in tents, walking approximately 35km over two days.

The annual competition this year had a Taskmaster theme, with the Explorers having to complete quirky challenges based on the TV show. These included popping bubblewrap with a toothpick, using knots to rescue a dummy from a well, and locating the ingredients and making a cream tea in a hailstorm.

“We are all part of the same Explorers group in Horsell [The Martians] and take part in these events regularly,” Freddie said. “This was the first time we were a team together, but some of us have been together since Cubs and have camped and hiked together before. I enjoy hiking, including the planning and using a map. 

The lightweight reference means that the team could not carry much with them.

“We carry a day sack with food, water, waterproof clothing and maps,” Freddie added. “We weren't allowed to use our phones or GPS, we had to rely on our navigation skills. Our tents and other equipment was transported separately to the campsite.

“I enjoyed the challenge and the teamwork, the only problem was when we realised after an hour that the gas wasn’t working and the curry we planned for dinner was still cold!

“We'd like to take part in further competitions and do further challenges. It's good preparation for the Duke of Edinburgh awards which some of the team are pursuing, and there will be more hikes on the Explorer Expeditions this summer.”