Yosemite Bear Development and Outdoor Citizenship
Timothy J O'Leary (tjo@CPTCHR.AFIP.MIL)
Thu, 29 Aug 1996 03:59:18 -0700
I have no idea of what is really going on regarding Yosemite, but the
concern regarding Boy Scout groups may, I fear, be very justified.
Many rime outdoor areas are very heavily used. Wise use requires,
therefore, very low impact camping. Most Scout troops are not
particularly good at it, and, while we have made a lot of progress in the
last 30 years, the standard which is set by most troops is nowhere near
that which would be seen in a typical group of campers drawn from, say,
the Sierra Club. Among the issues are the use of wood fires, approach to
latrines, campsite selection, and camper density. This is complicated by
the age and gender of the youth we serve. The average 11-15 year old
often acts before he thinks.
Some thoughts for discussion.
1. Should we ever build a wood fire in the backcountry?
2. Is the "standard latrine" outmoded. Should we always use individual
3. Can we actually camp in groups of 30 or more in many backcountry
sites, without too much trampling of the foliage?
4. Are the "camp improvements" we sometimes make environmentally
Admittedly, most of the time backcountry campoing is limited to older
Scouts, but if we don't teach "environmentally sensitive camping"
from the beginning, we may be making a mistake.
In any case, I would be interested in the group's impressions of
"standard Boy Scout camping", and how it fits in with environmentally
sensitive areas, especially "backcountry."
Tim O'Leary, CC Troop 772, CC Post 769, WDL, Pack 1072, NCAC, firstname.lastname@example.org
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City