Re: Participation in High Adventure Activities
golden cliff (c60clg1@CORN.CSO.NIU.EDU)
Tue, 17 Oct 1995 12:51:15 -0500
On Mon, 16 Oct 1995, WILLIAM J SALSGIVER wrote:
> the adults who would go. They then established criteria for the scouts
> who would be eligible to attend. Those criteria included: those who went
> to the Northern Tier were excluded from consideration, except for two
> scouts whose parents are going to Florida, but weren't adult leaders on
> the trip to Minnesota.
I think it's fantastic that you're doing all these high adventure
activities. High Adventure helps to retain older Scouts in the porgram
while giving them an exciting opportunity for learning and developing new
All boys should have the high adventure experience to look forward to. I
am however concerned about your attitude of limiting boys on your
activities. It sounds as if you're treating this as a very special
privilage rather than an integral part of your porgram.
I have a large troop of 50 boys. We did 3 high adventure activities last
summer, a 200 mile canoe trip, 325 mile bike trip, and a Philmont
Cavalcade. If a boy had the time and resources, he could have attended
all 3 trips. I had a couple boys attend two of them. I never restrict
them to just one trip per summer or every other summer. My job is to
create opportunity, not deny access to it.
My challenge is to provide an exciting program for ALL the boys in my
troop, regardless of age, rank, or ability. It's true that there may have
to be limitations placed on some trips, due to space availability, minimum
age or rank requirements, or physical ability, but that's when we add
another high adventure to fullfill the needs of the boys who couldn't
qualify for the other trip.
If you have extra adults interested in attending a high adventure program
and limited space for boys, then why not add another high adventure program?
I think some of the boys when enjoyed Northern Tier last summer would
enjoy Florida this summer. Why exclude them?
When we (the boys and I) plan our calendar, we try to determine what the
needs of all the Scouts are in our troop. From that, we plan 1 or more
high adventure programs to meet those needs.
As for eligibility, we must enforce whatever standards are dictated by the
national bases we attend. As for our own programs, we usually have a
minimum age of 13. Others might include ability qualifications. As an
example, our 325 mile bike trip required them to successfully complete
several required training rides over a span of months, plus a 100 mile
qualifier in a day. Each Scout was also required to complete x number of
hours in a service project, i.e. rehabbing donated bikes for needy
children. They honed their maintenance skills for bike repair while doing
something positive for the community.
My message is that high adventure is a great opportunity for boys. It is
truly a great thing you are doing in your troop. I applaud your
efforts. I believe we should be as generous as possible in providing
those opportunities to boys. It shouldn't be a privilage that must be
earned or rationed. It should be an integral part of their Scouting
experience. I like to see my boys get 2 summers at camp (more if they
choose) and 5 summers of high adventure in a varied program.
Opportunity is the greatest gift you can give a boy.
YIS, Cliff Golden
Scoutmaster Troop 33
DeKalb, Illinois firstname.lastname@example.org
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City