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Amazing Argentina expedition promotes learning

Saanich cadet Jayden Worth shows off a B.C. flag while ascending Mount Lopez in Argentina. The teen was one of only 36 Canadians selected to take part in the unique expedition to the South American country. - Photo courtesy of Jayden Worth
Saanich cadet Jayden Worth shows off a B.C. flag while ascending Mount Lopez in Argentina. The teen was one of only 36 Canadians selected to take part in the unique expedition to the South American country.
— image credit: Photo courtesy of Jayden Worth

Jayden Worth describes his trip abroad in one word: amazing.

The Saanich teen is a Master Warrant Officer with the 2483 Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, Royal Canadian Army Cadet Corps and returned in January from the International Army Cadet Expedition in Patagonia, Argentina. At 18 he’s a leader in the local cadet corps, and what stood out for him in Argentina wasn’t the stunning scenery.

“You can learn something from everybody,” he said. “It’s a humbling experience. I can learn so much, even though I was one of the oldest ones on the trip.”

The Camosun College marketing student worked his way up through cadets with shorter trips, from weekends away to a week-long regional trip.

“I did well on those evaluations, so I think that put me ahead. As well as some of my achievements at the corps level,” he said.

Worth was one of 36 cadets from across Canada chosen from hundreds of applicants based on past experience in the expedition program; outstanding fitness level; and his experience as a staff cadet for an Expedition Instructor course last summer. He has also completed the Expedition Advanced training, at Rocky Mountain National Army Cadet Summer Training Centre outside of Cochrane, Alta.

The expedition in Argentina was specifically designed to be physically and mentally demanding. For four days cadets kayaked and trekked across Gutiérrez Lake and Mascardi Lake in the province of Río Negro.

“Then at the end of the two lakes, there’s the mountain, that we … had to hike from the last campground all the way up to the mountain,” he said. “We were planning on summiting in the next couple days, but we had to come down due to the weather. It was still awesome.”

Worth’s worth on the trip is highlighted in an excerpt from daily log on the Army Cadet International Expedition Argentina Facebook page: “The team was up and moving at 830 on trek from (Gutiérrez Lake) to (Mascardi Lake). They were confronted with heavy winds on Lake Mascardi, they were able to make about 20 kilometres of headway on the lake arriving at their bivouac site by 1730. The (cadets) took on the challenging day of paddling in high spirits. After a traditional meal of ... chorizo, red lentils and garlic potatoes the team finished their bivouac set up. Team OSOS, Cadet Worth’s team name, recognized cadets Worth and Roy for keeping morale up during the strenuous paddle.”

As Worth approaches his 19th birthday, when cadets must move on from the program, he expects he’ll share his spoils in the future.

“The CIC (Cadet Instructors Cadre), that’s definitely something I’ve been thinking about,” he said. “I’ve learned so much, that other people can learn (from my experience).”

Visit armycadets2483ppcli.ca to learn more about the local army cadet corps.

reporter@saanichnews.com

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