Jan 11, 2019 at 6:59 pm #3572713
I surveyed our crew by having them look at the list of activities and mark the ones that interest them. Compiling the favorites will help them sit down choose their treks. I think this bunch needs to be in the lower mileage treks, unfortunately, based on our hikes.
The activities most popular with our crew are Blacksmithing, Tomahawk Throwing, Shotgun, Cowboy Action Shooting, Horse Rides, Chuckwagon and Archery. There are others that multiple people chose. Any thoughts on these based on your experiences? Did your crews like them or were they disappointed? Any activities that were more fun than the crew expected?
I had one person tell me that there are camps with cabins, but I only see cabin tours. I was not expecting there to be any nights in a cabin. Is that correct?
For these low mileage treks, is there too much down time?
So far, it’s looking like some of the treks most compatible with the scout survey have no dry camps. That would be nice. One has a Baldy Mountain hike.
The crew will choose. I just want to get them the information to make their choice.Jan 12, 2019 at 9:26 pm #3572902
Some of the “Program Features” are activities that some Scouts would otherwise not have an opportunity to experience in their home town life. Shooting sport, horse rides, climbing/rappelling so you may want them to participate in those.
Shorter easier treks may leave your crew with more (too much) down time unless your crew sleeps in late, makes coffee, waits for the sun to dry their tents and do not hit the trail until mid-morning. Then it be all they can do to get to their next camp before dark-thirty. Late hiking crews hike in the heat of the day, risk hiking in thunder storms, end up with the worst campsites and miss “Program Features”.
If your crew trains using the skills needed and practices breaking camp and get on the trail at first light they will hike in the coolest part of the day, get the best campsite and be the first in line at all their “Program Features”.
Sometimes it is wise to “counsel” your crew into making the right choice.
Cyphers Mine Camp is on such steep terrain they built lean-to platforms for crews to camp on. Those are the only such “cabins” I’ve seen.Jan 12, 2019 at 9:53 pm #3572904
Experiencing things they’ve never done before is certainly a goal. We typically have a shooting sports event each year, but not cowboy action shooting. We did an outdoor rock climbing even a couple of years ago and have done the climbing merit badge as a troop at an indoor place.
I think we can get our crew up early. They’ve learned to break camp quicker at our car camping trips because we now have a rule of no breakfast for scouts until everyone is packed up. This also encouraged older scouts to do more to help the younger scouts. However, Philmont will require learning some new procedures.
I’ve already told them to be ready to shift their days, going to bed earlier and getting up earlier to make sure they don’t miss programs and hike when it’s cooler.Jan 13, 2019 at 1:33 am #3572936
The way we do it …for what it’s worth ….
The Crew Leader gets up an hour before dawn and wakes everyone else. Before they even get out of their tent everybody changes into their trail clothes, packs away sleep and camp clothes, stuffs sleeping bag, packs sleep pad and puts on their boots as they get out of their tent. Tent buddies strike their tent and pack their packs.
Those assigned crew gear retrieve and pack it, cookware, stoves, first aid kit…
The Bear Rope and Bag Scouts retrieve and empty them at the Fire Ring for everyone to retrieve their Smellables Bag. The Crew Leader divides toady’s breakfast into equal piles for each camper to put in their pockets to eat now or later. He re-divides the food stores into appropriate piles for the Scouts.
Weather permitting, we often strike and pack the Dining Fly before supper so it will be dry and expedite morning pack-up. We cover our packs with rain covers and keep our boots under our tent fly or vestibule.
The Crew Leader calls for everyone to form a line and walk across the entire campsite (police the area) to check for and pick-up trash or lost gear.
With practice we can do all this within 30 minutes and are on the trail at first light, about 30 before dawn when it is just light enough to see well. We can hike at about 2 mph so are often in our next camp before noon.
“Philmont should be enjoyed, not endured.”Jan 13, 2019 at 4:43 am #3572945
Sounds like a good way to do it.Jan 14, 2019 at 12:36 am #3573054
I wasn’t born with the Philmont instinct. It has to be learned.
My first trek was with a Council Contingent crew made up of inexperienced campers from all over our Council. Our Crew Leader “had been before”, big deal. His Crew Roster was from the hip and who he was mad at. We could not get him out of his tent until well after sun up. Hiking in the heat was brutal, got caught in a few afternoon thunder storms, seldom got to do Program Features and slept on hill sides in some crummy campsites.
We did alright with Philmont’s unique skills and techniques as taught to us by our Ranger. He gave us a great pack shakedown to get rid of extra and unnecessary gear we still do today.
But Philmont was so great I wanted to do it again.
My second trek was with my now troop that had been multiple times and they advanced my techniques, Wow, Philmont became easy and we are still improving our techniques.
Most crews at Philmont appear to be first timers. And Philmont is trying to help first timers with their PASS program
as does this site.Jan 14, 2019 at 1:04 am #3573055
I was hoping to do the PSR-PASS program at Philmont last Fall, but it’s been canceled.
Obviously for the fires last year, but also not offered in the Spring.Jan 18, 2019 at 10:05 pm #3573759Jeffrey PetersBPL Member
No , you will be staying in the tents you carry. There are cabin tours like at Fish Camp and staff also live in the cabins. From your list my guys did horseback riding, shotgun shooting and archery. They had a good time. a shorter trek will probably work out for you better than a longer one. Our was at the end of July and the first week of August and that’ s the start of the rainy season. That means rushing to get into camp and get it set up before the afternoon storms start.Jan 18, 2019 at 11:39 pm #3573774Bruce TolleyBPL Member
@btolleyLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
+1 to this comment by David:
“The Crew Leader gets up an hour before dawn and wakes everyone else. Before they even get out of their tent everybody changes into their trail clothes, packs away sleep and camp clothes, stuffs sleeping bag, packs sleep pad and puts on their boots as they get out of their tent. Tent buddies strike their tent and pack their packs. Those assigned crew gear retrieve and pack it, cookware, stoves, first aid kit…”
The Ranger will work with your Scouts on this procedure. Your crew leader should be able to get himself up by himself. Although my crew leader refused to bring an alarm or use his phone alarm, so I got up at 600am and then woke him up.
I did however start to work with the Scouts during the training hikes by leading the math problem conversation that went like this. OK Scouts, we committed to meet the driving parents at 100pm 7 miles form our camp. It takes you 45 minutes to cook breakfast and another 30 minutes to break camp and with breaks, you hike 2.5 mph. What time do we need to get up and start breakfast?
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