CCA Previews ’21: Outdoor Adventure and Activities Club

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By ODAC 36

The warm glow of sunlight peeks through the trees, colouring the soft dirt path in front of you. The brittle, pastel flowers that dot your surroundings quiver slightly in the soft morning breeze that caresses your neck, It’s quiet, apart from the occasional melodious bird calls that beckon you forward deeper into the forest. Sounds fun? Then the Outdoor Adventure and Activities Club (ODAC) might just be the CCA for you!

If you are looking to head outdoors to have some fun, ODAC has it all! Odacians take part in a variety of activities ranging from hiking, cycling, and kayaking to overseas expeditions. ODAC aims to inculcate in each member a sense of respect for themselves, others, and the environment. It is also through these shared experiences where a great sense of camaraderie is fostered amongst Odacians. 

ODAC has a few key milestones that every Odacian has to go through.

Firstly, there is a Basic Training Camp during the March holidays. This is the very first outdoor camp that is usually held at Pulau Ubin for you to orientate yourselves with the CCA. It is where you will get a chance to hone your tent pitching and outdoor cooking skills, as well as to bond with your fellow batch mates.

ODAC 35 at their Basic Training Camp. (photo taken pre-COVID)

Secondly, ODAC also organises ODAK (Outdoor Adventure for Kids), a community outreach programme. 

Odacians with the kids at MINDs doing Longkang fishing (ODAK). (photo taken pre-COVID)

During this VIA opportunity, ODAC partners with voluntary welfare organisations that work with children from less privileged backgrounds or children with special needs to bring them on a day out to have fun and enjoy the outdoors!

ODAC also occasionally hosts school-wide events that invite participants across the student population to join us in cycling expeditions or adventure races. Without a doubt, completing this event is no easy feat—but it’s definitely worthwhile and enriching.

Gear Up at East Coast Park. (photo taken pre-COVID)

ODAC also hosts an alumni annual recall event, Odacia, where senior batches from ODAC return to interact with their juniors and new Odacians. It’s a chance for the ex-Odacians to reminisce about fond memories and for juniors to discover more from the seniors’ experiences.

ODACIA with previous batches of Odacians. (photo taken pre-COVID)

What is ODAC without expeditions? We will usually embark on our first expedition to Mount Ophir in Johor Malaysia. This expedition serves as an introduction to the great outdoors, which includes thrilling activities such as waterfall abseiling, river scrambling, as well as trekking on unfamiliar terrain like hiking up Mount Ophir. 

June Expedition to Mount Ophir, Malaysia. (photo taken pre-COVID)
River scrambling during our June expedition. (photo taken pre-COVID)
Abseiling down a waterfall during our June Expedition. (photo taken pre-COVID)

Finally, at the end of the year, we will embark on a more rigorous yet fun expedition. Over the course of the year, Odacians train hard and plan for the expedition as this is where we will be tested on all that we have learnt. The location for this expedition is subjected to changes from year to year and past batches have been to Australia, Hong Kong and Thailand.

In 2019, ODAC went to Phetchaburi, Thailand. Odacians participated in activities such as abseiling, backwoodsman cooking, outdoor cooking, mudbrick making, trekking and archery. It was truly a delightful trip as Odacians got to put into practice the skills they have been honing over the year.

Trekking around the Kaeng Krachan dam during our December Expedition. (photo taken pre-COVID)
Spectacular views from Kaeng Krachan dam. (photo taken pre-COVID)
Odacians trying their hand at archery during our December Expedition. (photo taken pre-COVID)
Odacians bonding around a campfire on the second last night of our December Expedition!

ODAC CCA sessions are held on Mondays from 4.30pm to 6.30pm and on Wednesdays from 2.30pm to 6.30pm.

On Mondays, ODAC has training sessions where Odacians do physical or skills training and games to prepare them for their treks and overseas expeditions. Besides just improving their fitness, Odacians learn many outdoors skills too. Soil turfing, outdoor cooking, and knot tying are just some of these skills which will also play important roles on their expeditions.

On Wednesdays, ODAC usually heads out of school to do fun activities such as trekking and cycling. We explore the many picturesque spots in Singapore—from the well-known Bukit Timah Nature Reserve to Coney Island, and to lesser known trails such as the Pipe-A-Pipe trek in Marsiling. Odacians have also explored many nature trails and urban treks, and have had the unique experience of walking along the pipes that transport water from Malaysia to Singapore during the Pipe-A-Pipe trek. Join us to uncover the many hidden gems that our little red dot has to offer!

Sungei Buloh Trek. (photo taken pre-COVID)
At the summit of Bukit Timah Hill. (photo taken pre-COVID)

Due to the COVID-19 situation, while physical CCAs have been suspended, ODAC has been conducting online CCA sessions every Wednesday, from 3.15pm to 4.45pm. We still do a myriad of fun activities with a right mix of work and play! Odacians learn useful skills like knot tying and first aid to prepare them for future expeditions. Exciting games are also organised to facilitate bonding within the batch. This is coupled with physical training to make sure Odacians maintain their fitness levels. ODAC ensures that the learning of outdoor skills is not compromised, and many Odacians have managed to forge close bonds with their batchmates!

The active nature of ODAC demands a high level of commitment from its members. Interested students should avoid signing up for enrichment programmes that involve overseas trips and taking on additional CCAs that will clash with ODAC sessions— including Students’ Council. Furthermore, interested students should also note that joining the CCA may incur some costs due to the need to purchase specialised equipment and to fund overseas trips.

In essence, if you’re looking for a challenge, for friends you can count on, and for unforgettable memories, then consider ODAC!  ODAC isn’t looking for the fittest person, or the most knowledgeable outdoor enthusiast. We’re looking for the thrill-seekers—those willing to go the extra mile for others, and those who strive to give their all in everything they do.

Adventures are where we go together.

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