Re: "Scouting is Outing" - hiking, etc.
Robert C. DeMoss (Fixit429@AOL.COM)
Mon, 28 Apr 1997 00:36:30 -0400
In a message dated 97-04-27 21:27:20 EDT, quakenb@CAMEL.CAMPBELL.EDU (Win
<< We have never done much with hiking. Most of our guys have met the "5
mile" requirement at summer camp or camporees. My impression frm the
literature (source?) is that the IDEAL is to include a 2-3 mile hike with
each campout, and that a 5 miler should be no big deal - happens
Do you do this? If so -
1 - Do you hike along road right-of-ways, or do you get permission to go
2 - Full pack always/sometime/other?
3 - How do you introduce new scouts to this experience?
4 - Any other words of wisdom?
Win Quakenbush Scoutmaster
Troop 794 Buies Creek, NC >>
My name is Bob DeMoss, CC with a troop in N. KY. I have been hiking merit
badge counselor for five years and enjoy hiking very much.
In answer to your questions #1. I never hike along roads. We will cross them
or follow them for a short way if the trail goes thay way, but I enjoy the
woods to much to stay along roads. Also young scouts will sometimes get a
little wild and being next to a road is no place to play. As for how far to
hike, I would start with marked trails of five miles and build up from there.
Our norm is 10 miles or more but we try to have a midway point so if someone
tires or gets hurt we have a point that we can get out quickly, to rest, get
#2 Full pack? Not if I can get by without it. Full packs are for
backpacking, unneccessary for hiking, unless you are spending the night along
the trail. A full pack will tire young scouts and they will have less fun,
which is what hiking is about. BUT if you are training for a backipacking
trip by all means a full pack is the way to train.
#3 - I try to start my scouts as Weblos on five mile trails in state parks or
national forest. try to keep your eyes open for something along the trail;
say the color red or something triangle. anything to keep the scouts from
just tring to get from point 'A" to point "B". There is much to be discovered
in the woods, the trees are like fingerprints, no two are alike. Take a book
on trees and see how many you can idenitify. Enjoy being out with nature,
take your lunch in a day pack. Remember to take everything with you that you
brought in, maybe more. Learn to live by the "outdoor code". Take only
pictures, leave only footprints. NC should have some great trails, along with
most any other state. Check with local rangers for maps and trails.
Please, if you are nor qualified to take your scouts into the wilderness,
find someone who is. There is so much to see and enjoy, but at the same time
there are a lot of dangers out there. Have fun, but do it safely.
Troop 721 & Post 96 BSA
Co-Leader Troop 429 GSUSA
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City