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Duties of a Leader

Before the trip
  • Study the area.
  • Make a trip plan: identify hazards,calculate times using NAISMITH'S RULE
For an average walker ,medium pack, allow one hour for every 5 km of easy going, every 3 km of easy scrambling,
and every 1.5 km of extremely rough country, deep sand, soft snow or thick bush, plus 1 hr for every 500 m (300m for children) up,
and 1 hr for every 1000 m down. For the very fit & experienced, reduce the total time by 1/3. For school groups reduce by 1/3.

  • Identify alternatives & escape routes, consider shelter & shade, include highlights.
  • Consider the group's fitness, age & experience.
  • Obtain permissions.
  • Consider size of group: min 4.
  • Arrange transport.
  • Have an emergency plan including escape routes.
  • Brief contact person: Where , what the group is, when you expect to return, what to do if you do not return by the specified time 
  • Assistant leader for large groups.
  • Brief participants: when,where, how much, transport, what to bring, itinerary.
  • Weather check prior to departure.
  • Check essential gear: maps, first aid kits, emergency shelter, stoves.

During trip.
  • Before moving, count & make introductions.
  • Explain procedure if lost.
  • Check equipment [packs should weigh no more than 1/3 of body wt for adult, 1/4 for child],clothing, shoes.
  • Check all present after breaks.
  • Monitor physical & psychological well-being of group.
  • Monitor time, your position & rate of progress.
  • Keep track of where you are at all times by assessing:Direction of walk, including recent changes of direction.
  • Distance based upon elapsed time & direct estimation.
For a person of 1.8 m ht, carrying a pack on level ground, a pace (double step) will be about 1.5 m giving about 660 paces to the km.
  • Terrain, features eg number of creeks, hills, roads.
  • Slope of the land about you.-direction, steepness.
  • Direction of features eg gullies, creeks roads.
  • Bearings of prominent features.
  • Monitor the weather & modify plan.
  • Ensure responsible behaviour: environment, other walkers.
  • Keep group informed of location & change in plans.
  • Encourage.
  • Appoint whip & pace setter.
  • Control pace, designate rest stops.
  • Maintain group cohesion.
  • Enrich trip, teach navigation.
  • Set example.
On Arrival
  • Count heads.
  • Check for injuries, headache, sunburn blisters etc.
  • Make sure exhausted people do not go to bed without eating.
  • Discourage bare feet around camp fires & also the drying of boots.
  • Discourage monopolization of fires with either gear or bodies while cooking is progressing.
  • Forbid horseplay near tents or the fire.
  • Outline plans for the next day, including rising time & moving off.
  • Check all fires are extinguished & ask an early riser to give an early morning call.
Next morning
  • Make sure everyone is awake.
  • Check illnesses.
  • Help beginners & slow starters.
  • Allocate jobs to party members who are early 
  • Give 30 min, 10 min & 5 min warnings of departure.
  • Cover fire pits & replace turf.
  • Emu bob area.
  • Leave campsite au natural.
  • Check for left gear & that fires are out.
  • Count heads.
  • Repeat briefing re water, lunch spot, and announce first rest spot.
  • Nominate bearers of group equipment.
  • Lighten loads of those indisposed.
  • Nominate a whip loudly & clearly.
  • Starting off.
  • Slow pace to begin.
  • Clothing stop after 15 mins.
  • Respect privacy.
  • Halt 10 mins every hour.
[Category:Leadership Skills|During The trip|Before The trip]