scouts-l Mail Archive for November of 1999: Re: Lanterns! (Sorry, leave them at home)
Thu Nov 25 1999 - 00:10:28 CST
While at camp last summer, our Webelos became acquainted with "night hikes"
using no lights. What an experience! One of the leaders would familiarize
himself with a trail to take during the light of day. At about 10 p.m. we
would assemble for the hike. One leader would head up the hike, and everyone
lined up single file behind him. We had another leader at the rear of the
line, and a leader or two strategically placed in the center of the line. We
encouraged everyone to wear a light colored shirt. Basically...you just take
it slow down the trail, keeping your eyes on the person in front of you,
using your feet to "feel" changes in terrain, using your ears to sense things
going on around you, and not using your mouth (so that everyone can hear
Every so often the leader would send the message (whispering to the person in
back of him) from the front of the line to the rear, to "send up the count".
The count would get whispered from one person to the person in front of them
until it reached the front of the line, to determine that everyone was still
in line. The count only came to the front of the line "wrong" one time. When
that happened, we stopped immediately to recount & determine that someone had
miscounted. If indeed the count was wrong....we'd have known that someone had
dropped out of line & we would have reversed our hike immediately to find the
We'd set the hikes up with our destination being a clearing in the woods, or
the edge of a lilly-covered lake. When you walk out of the woods into one of
these open areas, it's like walking into daylight. Your "night eyes" take
over & you can see perfectly! The boys were amazed. Needless to say, the
night hikes were a favorite activity at camp.
Several of the leaders took flashlights that could have been used in
emergencies, but they were never used. If you've never tried this nightime
activity, you might want to give it a try.