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DoE Gold Practice, Planning & Qualifier package

Duration: Five days / four nights

The final frontier, Gold DoE brings together all your hard work, persistence and dedication from Bronze adventures and Silver journeys. Tapping into your adventurous DoE spirit on a whole new level, it will be up to you and your teammates to plan and lead an extended expedition in its entirety. Are you ready for the challenge?

The DoE Gold Practice, Planning & Qualifier package is a five-day, four-night adventure in New Zealand. Bound to push you further than ever before with new challenges and terrain at every turn, the Gold practice journey tests all the DoE knowledge you’ve acquired so far. Your adventurous journey experience from Bronze and Silver will be like second nature to you, so expect these to shine through. But the new Gold training skills will need flexing, so don’t miss this opportunity. Tune in, stay focused, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a confident adventurer and ready for your final Duke of Edinburgh expedition.

The result of hard work, persistence and dedication. Welcome to the final and best chapter of The Duke of Edinburgh Award. Participants will plan and lead the DoE Gold Practice, Planning & Qualifier package expedition in its entirety. Take on the role of leadership and responsibility to get out on adventures at a whole new level.

From start to finish, you and your team will have agency over the entire adventure. Using resources to construct a thought-through plan, you’ll need to complete a tramping route card before leading the expedition as a team. Your Social Nature Movement instructor will be there to shadow you and make sure you’re making sound decisions. But essentially, you’re on your own.

DoE Gold Practice, Planning & Qualifier package journeys must be submitted to the National Office for approval at least six weeks prior to the journey taking place (twelve weeks if outside New Zealand).

16+ years old

Pre-requisites: Silver

Dates and locations: You choose

Transport mode: Tramp, Kayak, SuP or Packrafting

Examples of Gold explorations and expeditions for DoE

• Exploring the natural world: glaciation, erosion, geology, coastal
studies, river valleys, plant studies, bird studies or animal studies,
insect studies
• Exploring historic land use: prehistoric man, historical periods
• Exploring human impact: visitor pressure in national parks,
pollution monitoring, surveys of numbers of walkers in remote areas
• Carrying out health surveys or health education in remote areas
• Completing a demanding journey by foot, cycle or canoe/ kayak
• Investigating group dynamics in challenging conditions
• Kayaking the entire navigable stretch of a river

• Extensive sail across an ocean
• Climbing an Alpine, Himalayan or other high mountainous peak
• Cycling from one end of a country to another or from coast to coast

Where necessary, two DoE levels can be on the same journey, provided each participant meets the minimum requirement for the higher Award level.

All Duke of Ed practice and qualifying journeys at all levels should be on tracks that have not been used for a previous journey.

The DoE Adventurous Journey Expedition Section should provide opportunities to:

• Plan and execute a journey - requiring attention to detail and organisational ability.
• Demonstrate enterprise and imagination – by the group organising their own journey.
• Work as a member of a team - all journeys are a group effort.
• Respond to a challenge - either planned or unforeseen.
• Develop self-reliance - through carrying out an unaccompanied journey.
• Develop leadership skills - members of the group have opportunities to take a leading role during different aspects of the journey.
• Recognise the needs and strengths of others - all are involved in mutual support to ensure the success of the journey.
• Make decisions and accept the consequences – the group makes real decisions affecting their well-being.
• Reflect on personal performance - through reviewing progress during training and at the end of the Qualifying Journey.
• Enjoy and appreciate the environment – developing an awareness of the areas visited and issues affecting the environment.

Other Duke of Edinburgh Award Adventurous Journeys

Occasionally, a significant expedition or exploration involving extra innovation, creativity and challenge may take place. In such circumstances, the advice and agreement of a Group’s or Unit’s Operating Authority is required to proceed. The only additional stipulation is that all participants must be aged 18 or over. It is also the case that significant Adventurous Journeys - such as scaling a Himalayan peak - would require the advice and assistance, usually at cost, of an external provider such as a reliable expedition company.

How to sign off completed Adventurous Journeys using ORB

Firstly access the Online Record Book (ORB), here

Then, follow the sign-off information, here

Apply for NCEA credits while doing your Duke of Edinburgh Award

GOLD AWARD - NZQA Unit Standards Level 3
• Communicate with people from other cultures – 2 credits (1304, v.9)
• Speak to a known audience in a predictable situation – 3 credits (1307, v.8)
• Read texts to research information – 4 credits (2990, v.7)
• Contribute within a team or group which has an objective – 3 credits (9681, v.7)
• Give feedback on performance in the workplace – 3 credits (9705, v.7)
• Listen actively to gain information in an interactive situation – 3 credits (11097, v.5)

Check out our booking tab, click the book now button or fill an enquiry here.

Duration: Five days / four nights


Environmental care

Water Code (DOC),
The spirit and content of the High Country Recreational Users Code.


Control and responsibility,
Search and rescue structure and practices [land or marine]

Trip Planning

Planning a trip of three or more nights’ duration, to include some areas above bushline,
Safety Management and Expedition forms,
Understanding weather maps.


Clothing and foot wear for snow conditions.


Equipment for snow country,
Packing for longer expeditions and snow country,
Use of mountain radios.

Stoves and fuels

Lighting a stove in adverse weather conditions,
Lighting an emergency fire.


The importance of adequate eating on arduous expeditions; know food to include, and choose emergency rations,
Cooking in adverse weather conditions (snow, rain).


Camping in exposed areas above bushline and in snow.

Map reading

Further training and practice in advanced map work appropriate to the journey to be undertaken.

Compass use

Finding location using 3 bearings,
Understanding of direction finding at night.

Route finding

Using animal tracks in the bush,
Travel above bushline on tussock, screes and snow.

Water safety

Advanced mutual support crossing methods,
How to recover if swept away.

Survival / loss of route

An overnight camp in an improvised shelter.

Outdoor first aid

CPR – adult, child, infant,
Recognition and treatment of dehydration, muscle cramps, heat exhaustion, heatstroke, hypothermia, frostnip,
Common patient carries eg, two and four hand seat, use of sleeping mats,
The evacuation of patients with serious injuries


Observation, survey and recording techniques applicable to final venture,
Use of related equipment.

Whenever you want! We just need 4+ participants, then we can go at a date of your choosing!

SNM staff carry cellphones and emergency communication devices where it is often (but not always) possible to connect.

SNM offers tramping, sea kayaking, stand up paddle boarding and packrafting.

To some extent, yes, but all DoE Gold Adventurous Journeys must be approved by DoE NZ Head Office.

We select the best staff for the job based on their skills, knolwedge and experiences. They will be an SNM staff member or we will bring in support from equally competent contractors. Sometimes we also bring in (semi)celebrity guests!

Clothing and Equipment list for the Duke of Edinburgh Award


  • Wind and Waterproof Jacket
  • Wind and Waterproof Pants (Autumn/Winter only)
  • Thin merino shirt / thermal (polypropylene) shirt x 2
  • Fleece jumper (x1 Summer, x2 Autumn)
  • Alternative insulation jumper x1 (wool, down, synthetic) (add this if Winter)
  • Thermal bottom leggings (polypropylene),
  • Shorts
  • Pants
  • Swimwear
  • Socks
  • Sunhat
  • Warm beanie
  • Neck warmer / scarf
  • Warm gloves


  • Compass
  • Camp shoes (jandals / crocs)
  • Closed-toe footwear (trail runners / boots)
  • Sunglasses
  • Toiletries
  • Personal medication
  • Water bottle (1L+)
  • Head torch
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping bag liner (not critical)
  • Sleeping mat (can be hired $15/day)
  • Cooker and fuel (can be hired $10/day)
  • Tent (can be hired $20/day)
  • Matches/lighter
  • Cutlery and crockery
  • Watch (not critical)
  • Knife / multi tool / swiss army knife
  • Walking poles (not critical)
  • Day pack / mission bag
  • Waterproof pack liner (can be a large black rubbish bag)
  • Pack rain cover (not critical)
  • Backpack (50-75L) to put all of the above in
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