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  • Backpack Wood Badge?

    I've been asked to help invent a weekend outdoor skills training course for local Trail Life Troops.

    Can anyone give me a general idea of how the week-long Backpack Wood Badge course of yester-year was organized?


    Yours at 300 feet!

  • #2
    I used to have a copy, but that was 5 computers ago, I will look for it tomorrow. However, search for an old Brownsea or JLTC course syllabus, I think you will like those better. We designed a back packing course from one of those courses. I can't remember, which, but it doesn't matter. What are you thinking because those are leadership courses, it assumes the participants knows outdoor skills. You know what might be a better syllabus is the old Scoutmaster Basic course. That course is more skills oriented that included back packing. How many days and scouts? Barry


    • #3
      Eagledad, The Medium is the Message

      My thought was that Wood Badge was invented to teach indoor volunteers how to think like outdoorsmen: Specifically how to navigate through the backwoods.

      Before "leadership skills," a Scoutmaster's job was to teach his Scouts how to actually "scout" (the final test of every rank was a semi-solitary Journey), and to teach his Patrol Leaders how to actually go out on "patrol" (the purpose of a Patrol was to patrol the backwoods at least once a month).

      Since most of the promotional material for "Trail Life" features "trail life" in the rugged wilderness (always with snow-capped mountains looming overhead!), I would incorporate navigation into every aspect of their training.

      For a weekend beginners' course, perhaps each outdoor skill session a football field away, marked on a map...


      • #4
        Originally posted by Kudu View Post
        Eagledad, The Medium is the Message
        Agreed, that is where I was thinking as well. But you are wrong that WB was invented to teach volunteers to think like outdoorsmen. WB was invented to teach advanced teaching skills. The participants in mind already were well seasoned and had the backwoods skills. Very much the same as the old National JLT course at Philmont before the new course replaced it.

        We are thinking in the same direction, I still think an old copy of the Scoutmaster Basic course would be a good start, then modify it to add the "scout" part. I would look at making day two the weekend backapcking course because it is the skills day, which included backpacking. Then you could do the day one part of the adult skills for another weekend to show adults how to work in a boy run environment.

        I'm also looking for my electronic version of our Boy Run JLTC course because it does almost exactly what you are talking about, maybe even too much. The problem is that it was not a backpacking format. We were planning a backpacking format, but the introduction NYLT nip that in the bud. Still, the basic idea was to give the participants their destination and let them figure out how to get there. They would have to include in their plan several skills classes along the way, but the rest was up to them. As you point out, the skills classes are secondary to the skills learned for getting the group from point "A" to point "Z". Or at least that is the plan. So like the original WB course, it doesn't matter what skills you are teaching in the skills classes because the real lesson is learned between them.



        • #5
          I did a Backpacking WB course almost 40 years ago. While there was some Scout Skills taught, the bulk of the course was using Scout/Outdoor skills to learn leadership. From the get go when we were sent to get our patrol gear and find our way to the campsite it was a teaching experience. We spent the first night in one spot and had some afternoon and evening sessions then got up on Sunday, fixed breakfast, broke camp and had an opening then took off. We would stop along the way and do things that were all part of the overall learning/teaching, though we didn't know it at the time. We camped in a different place every night. We soon learned that whoever was PL at the time had better pay close attention in the meetings because getting information afterwards was difficult by design. It took the whole week, but finally my patrol got itself organized so that we made it to a morning formation on time and didn't get sung to for being late. The new WB where you sleep indoors and eat meals someone else cooked and watch computer presentations just doesn't seem like the way to experience Scouting like a patrol would. Talking to other leaders in my troop who later went to static courses I found that the Walking WB course was quite different in some aspects probably because we were never in one place for any length of time and we provided our own food.
          Last edited by Eagle69; 04-23-2014, 11:16 AM.


          • #6
            I'm interested in how this comes out. Are you willing to posit periodic updates on who the planning and event goes? You have a chance to pioneer a good program here; the closest thing we have is Powder Horn.


            • #7
              Wood Badge was designed as a static course, Someone came up with "Walking Wood Badge" in 1976 Thereafter, there were Canoeing Wood Badge and Rafting Wood Badge - as trials.

              The Walkers went by us twice at Philmont, They looked motivated but tired. I have not heard of a Walking course in many years. I think they were all at Philmont.
              Last edited by TAHAWK; 04-24-2014, 09:00 PM.


              • #8
                One of the former scouters in my district did the Walking Woodbadge at Philmont when it was offered. I can try and contact him if you want.

                I do have a copy of the old BA22 course with notes all through it. I can send it to you if you want.


                • #9
                  Kudu, is this course for the Adults or for the, ha, Trailmen?


                  • #10
                    I chuckle as trial life seems to be attracting the traditional scouters.

                    I hope they avoid the political egotistical Mess the bsa has become.


                    • #11
                      Was a participant at Walking WoodBadge SC-437. Also former Training Chair for two Councils. Those courses were a traditional WoodBadge syllabus, with the added twist of full qualification for 50 Miler (including the Service Project - all accomplished in our "free time" <g>