Team leader: Harry

Age Group: 6 – 7 year olds

Activity: Hiking 

Location: Marlenaz – Les Marmottes

Goal of the session: ‘Nature Trail’

A short walk from Marlenaz to Marmottes in Verbier for these little guys’ legs was on the agenda this morning, to explore and learn more about the Alpine environment, and the types of animals and plants that live here. Blessed with glorious sunshine we set off along the Bisse once the sunscreen had been applied, the hats were on and the bottles were filled up. We also played a little warm-up game to get everyone ready for walking.

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Harry set the campers a challenge for the morning session: for each letter of the alphabet they needed to find an animal, a plant or flower, a tree or a type of rock along the trail. Harry provided Quartz, for Q, to get the team started!

As we walked along the campers were very enthused to seek out all sorts of little creatures and insects, as well as spotting birds and larger animals. A runner went past with their dog which provided an easy letter ‘D’. The letter ‘A’ was quickly filled with ‘ant’, and ‘B’ with ‘butterfly’.

Harry had some information sheets on types of trees and the children managed to spot spruces for ‘S’ (as well as slugs and snails) pines for ‘P’ and fir trees, ‘F’. Harry encouraged each child to have a feel of the trees’ branches to identify the difference between the softer and spikier varieties.

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As we continued along, we crossed paths with Alex’s group who filled as with excitement as he told us they had seen several marmots that morning. This was surely going to be ‘M’! As we came out into the open, we met a lovely herd of cows. The children learnt that the bigger the bell around their neck, it meant the better at fighting they were. We found a spot to have a break and a snack to re-fuel before setting off again with renewed energy.

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We whispered as we neared where we thought the marmots might be hiding, so as to try and not scare them away. Their unmissable whistle was faint, but could be heard. Sadly, we didn’t spot one this time. As we neared the end of the trail, the group summarised what they had found for each letter of the alphabet. The letters that didn’t have an item were to be found over the course of the week.

Well done team, you did a great job!