For Young People

Wake up to porridge ….

The majority of our work is coordinated through East Lothian Schools, but some sessions / courses can be booked directly by parents/ guardians on behalf of young people.  These are…

The Adventure Academy

Duke of Edinburgh Award Expeditions

Higher Geography Field-Studies Residential – Cairngorms National Park

Winter Adventures – Weekend Residentials – Cairngorms National Park

Local & National Competitions

School Holiday Programme

The Adventure Academy

What is the Adventure Academy… A group of pupils from across East Lothian Council schools who meet and work together on a range of outdoor adventurous activities including rock-climbing, orienteering, canoeing, kayaking and mountain sports.

When and where  … Fortnightly on Thursdays after school 4:15 – 6:15 pm at the Outdoor Learning Service base in Musselburgh.  Monthly weekend day trips, a winter weekend residential and a Summer expedition in the last week of the summer term.  Click here for session times for 2019-20 academic year.

Who is it for … Any S2-S4 pupil who wants to be inspired, stretched and challenged by outdoor adventures.  It’s for anyone who’s interested in outdoor pursuits as a hobby, or  maybe even considering a future working in the outdoors.

What will it cost …  A nominal charge will be made for transport, entry fees and any residential costs incurred.   We do not anticipate these being more than a couple of pounds per session. The residential will be approximately £40 dependent on the accommodation required.  There is no cost for staff time or equipment.  Financial assistance can be made available please contact us in confidence.

What will I get out of it … learn new skills,  maybe gain some awards, work as a team, build your resilience and confidence. Have adventures!

How do I apply … download the application form here and return to  Including the words ‘Adventure Academy’ in the subject.  Numbers are limited!

Once you have been allocated a place through the Outdoor Learning Service… Pay here

Duke of Edinburgh Awards Expeditions

Through our network of supply staff and associate instructors we can provide expedition supervision to support your school or community DofE group.  Our DofE expedition packages are as follows:

Training Session4 hrs4 hrs4 hrs
Training Expedition Route Planning3 hrs3 hrs3 hrs
Training Expedition2 days3 days4 days
Qualifying Expedition Route Planning3 hrs3 hrs3 hrs
Qualifying Expedition2 days3 days4 days

See here for pricing. This is for one member of staff supervising one walking group and includes overnight supervision. This does not include potential costs for an additional assessor (if required) or mini-bus hire.

Higher Geography Field Studies>

A residential field-studies course to the Cairngorm National Park (3 days/ 2 nights), run jointly with ELC Secondary Schools.  It provides an ideal opportunity for those who are new to Geography, or those who want to gain more confidence, to learn some of the key processes and techniques required at Higher level.

As part of the Higher Geography course, all pupils have to complete the added-value unit.  This requires the pupils to carry out fieldwork, process the data then analyse the results.  A report on their findings is then written up, under exam conditions and sent away to the SQA to be marked externally.  This makes up 1/3 of their final mark.  In order to learn how to collect data, as well as process it, we have chosen to visit the Cairngorm National Park.  As this is a glaciated area, we will also take the opportunity to visit some key landforms to consolidate learning about the processes and features, as well as look at the land uses and conflicts that exist there.  Prior to the field trip, we will have a meeting with the pupils to discuss the various topics that will be covered so that they can start thinking about what type of project they want to do, and carry out any background reading.

The cost of the trip includes travel, accommodation, food, equipment and all activities.  Please note that although the cost of food is included in the price, the accommodation is self-catering and therefore pupils and staff will prepare all the meals. A packed lunch will need to be supplied for the first day.  We stay at Badaguish Forest Lodges ( and pupils will be sharing rooms.

Usual Itinerary …may change dependent on weather

Day 1 : Meet at East Lothian Outdoor Education at 9am to collect kit and pack the trailer. Travel to Aviemore with a picnic stop along the route.  Visit Aviemore and carry out fieldwork.

Day 2:  Cairngorm Mountain Resort: – Talk from the national park ranger, Look at how the physical landscape influences land use, study the impact of tourism on the mountain and collect data in the ski area.

Day 3: Cairngorm Mountain: Meet a local business person, walk into the neighbouring corries to the ski centre and collect data

Day 3 pm:  Return to school for approximately 7pm

Once you have been allocated a place through your school Geography Department… Pay here

Winter Adventures – Weekend Residentials – Cairngorms National Park

This year we are back at the fine facilities of Badaguish in the Cairngorms National Park.

Why attend … The Scottish winter mountains can be a challenging environment.  They are an excellent place to help you gain skills and confidence. We will help you experience some amazing conditions and hopefully learn some new winter skills – such as using an ice-axe and crampons, or for those that can already ski, maybe some touring off-piste on skis.  And as at least two of us teach Geography there’ll be plenty of glacial features and processes explored and discussed.

Who can attend …We run two weekends one for S3-4 and another for S5-6. Max group size is 12 per trip.

Dates … This years dates can be found here

Logistics … we will leave after school on the first day of each trip from the Outdoor Learning Service in Musselburgh, returning on the evening of the last day.

Activities will be dependent on the conditions and the group, they will include …
Planning your winter day  – weather forecast, snow-pack, route-choice, what to take?
Winter navigation
Winter technical skills – use of winter boots, ice-axe, crampons
Snow craft – building emergency shelters, snow holes
Avalanche awareness and emergency response.
Winter hill-walking
Snowshoeing – dependent on conditions
Ski-touring – very dependent on participants prior experience and conditions. We can discuss when you arrive

What’s included …
Self-catering accommodation in 4, 6 or 8 bed dorms
Instruction and coaching from ELC OLS staff
All technical and safety equipment, including outer waterproof clothing and winter boots.

What to bring …
See here for a kit-list
Linen for bedding is provided but you need to bring a towel!
Enthusiasm and a smile

Cost  …
£95 fully inclusive of equipment, food, instruction and transport

Interested … Book and pay online here


Local and National Outdoor & Adventure Sport competitions

Once you have been allocated a place through your school… Pay here

School Holiday Programme

Click on the ‘For Pupils; tabs to book here