Scouts-L Mail Archive for February of 1999: Re: Mini Philmont Trek
Re: Mini Philmont Trek
Thu, 25 Feb 1999 22:15:20 -0600
At 08:14 PM 2/24/99 EST, Marcia Trudeau wrote:
>Has anyone every attended the Mini Philmont Trek that is sponsored by Sam
>Houston Area Council (Western Texas)? I am thinking that this might be a
>good experience for the newly formed Venture Patrol. I'd be interested in
>hearing about this program and its effectiveness.....especially before we
>the long drive.
I'm not really sure what you are describing by a "Mini-Philmont" trek.
If you are describing something that is not a summer trip, give us some
If you are describing a summer trip (probably first 2-3 weeks of August),
where the group is staying less than 13 days (10 nights on trail, 2 nights
in base), then that is a common program offered at Philmont. It is a short
trek, where the crew gets the normal base camp processing / ranger
training, but returns to base after between 5 and 9 nights on the trail.
Rather than using the PEAKS book to select an itinerary, one is planned
upon arrival at Philmont, based on crew program desires and resource
availability. The same programs available at Philmont for regular length
crews are available for short treks, but you can't get as many in due to
time limitations. The fee charged by Philmont is pro-rated from the normal
Whether this is a good selection depends on the skills of the group, the
vacation requirements of the Adult leadership, and your experience at
When I worked at Philmont, I encountered units (one in particular was from
somewhere in Texas) that took the short treks because they could fit a trek
into 1 week of vacation time for the leaders (9 days total, including
weekends, left early on Saturday from home, arrived at Philmont either
Saturday / Sunday, spent night in base, 5/6 nights on trail,spent night in
base, returned home sunday).
Outside of the above case, many of the units I worked with who were on
Short treks took them because no regular length treks were available. Many
of them indicated that they would like to return for a full length trek
because they wanted MORE.
In my experience as a camper, I noted that we were done with our full
length trek about the time I was getting acclimated / in shape. This is
worse for short treks (I ran into the same thing when I went on a 4 night
Philmont Staff Association trek in 1994).
If your group has never backpacked before, especially if they are younger,
less fit, or aren't working as a team as well as you'd like, it can be a
good starting experience and give you reason to get better prepared for a
longer backpacking trip (or for a return trip to Philmont).
If your group is older, experienced backpackers, and wants to experience
lots of the programs, you may be frustrated at lack of time to participate
in the programs.
I would look at the specifics of the trip and discuss it with the youth
planning on attending to determine if this is a good trip for you.
I WANT TO GO BACK TO PHILMONT!!!!!!
Scott A. Begin Philmont Ranger 1988-89, Logistics 1990
email@example.com Philmont Staff Association Member
Oak Forest, IL