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Chippewa29

Great Ideas You Thought Would Never Work

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On a campout in September, I convinced my troop to go hiking at night through the woods with no flashlights (I had one in case of an emergency). Also, I told the Scouts not to talk during the trip. They were absolutely amazed at how much they saw and heard even though it was dark. We even had a buck less than five feet from us (that was what it sounded like). The parents were amazed I got them to not talk for over an hour and the kids are still raving about the experience. In fact, when we went on our next campout, they said they wanted to go night hiking again and requested it be in silence and without flashlights. Does anyone else have anything simple and fun like that to open the minds of the Scouts and give them a great experience?

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As someone once said, "The only thing I can add is... I have nothing to add." Thanks for a great idea that our Troop will try next camping trip!

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MrScout, I had the same thought about leaving them out there, but their parents didn't offer me enough money. I also realized I forgot to mention that while we were out hiking, there was heat lightning and a little bit of thunder while we were on our way back (it never did really storm) as well as a mist coming off the marshes in the woods, so it was a very surreal experience.

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Night hiking under a full moon is the best. I once backpacked an open streach of the AT under moonlight. It was incredible.

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Night time experiences are different and rewarding. My most striking memory is of Havasu Falls in Arizona under a full moon in 1992.

 

Safety is also an issue. A lot depends on trail conditions and knowledge of the area. Proper footwear and the buddy system are even more important. Make sure you know where you are going and have a plan in case someone gets separated from the group.

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Where is one I really want to do but haven't done yet.

 

1910 weekend.

Essentially the boys research what scouting was like in 1910 (or thereabouts) and build gear to do a weekend camp using the gear and techniques used at that time (including food.) All the modern stuff would be off limits.

 

My guys are all gearheads, drooling over the latest high tech camping gear. Why not test their skills by taking all that stuff away. Scouting fundamentals work quite well without goretex, nynol and titanium.

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