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Its Me

I am angry

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We are a wolf den.

 

Five months ago I sat through Baloo training. Four months ago I planned a two night three day Den campout. Its at a state park in our county about 25 miles from our neighborhood. With a den of ten active boys, 4 might be going and only two are doing the full two nights. I got trained, got the permit from council, reserved the site, I'll buy the food and cook it for them. I have planned the activities arranged for a ranger lead hike. I even learned some stories.

 

At every den meeting I have mentioned it. With every email I have discussed it. Why are they all now backing out? Why would they be in Cubscouts if they weren't interested in taking their kids camping?

 

Why?

 

Signed

an angry me.

(This message has been edited by Its Me)

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OOOPS!

If in fact you sat through BALOO you missed the first thing they talked about.

DENS CANNOT GO CAMPING.

 

Having a BALOO trained Pack leader allows a PACK to go FAMILY CAMPING, not a Den. The only Den that can go camping is a Webelos Den and only after the leader has attended Webelos Leader Outdoor Training.

 

So lucky for you the den members have backed out. you have two years to figure out why before you can try den camping correctly.

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Is it possible this restriction wasn't mentioned?

 

This is one thing I don't understand. Why can't Wolf or Bear dens go den camping? Doesn't make sense to me.

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

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I sat through BALOO training and they in fact said that Dens could go camping. Hence the approved permit from council.

 

 

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By the letter of the law, Bob is right, but let me respond to the heart of your post.

 

First of all, don't take it personally. Your numbers are not out of line with those I see in my pack on campouts. With around 100 active Scouts, we usually have about 20 or 25 Scouts attend "real" campouts -- those held at the Scout camp (about 90 minutes away) -- and about twice that number when we camp at a local park. In Cub Scouting, I think there are simply many families who "don't camp." They don't have any experience or gear and the idea just doesn't appeal to them. When you throw in the usual schedule conflicts, only having a quarter of your boys on a campout isn't unusual.

 

Our most successful campouts attendance-wise are those held at a local park where families can come and go as they please. We make a point of planning activities which aren't affected by the number of Scouts in attendance, such as doing a sports belt loop. Meal planning meal is another matter and we ask for firm reservations. We also make a point to let folks know that it is okay to come for the day, stay for dinner and the campfire, then go home. For those weekends we'll have 70-80 boys particpate at some point during the weekend.

 

Ultimately, of course, you are dealing with the parents. Communicate and make sure they are on board. If the really don't won't to participate in a particular activity, don't force the issue. Don't be afraid to say, "this is a lot of work, if you don't want to go, please say so now."

 

That also gets back to camping being a pack activity. The pack has the leadership and support (i.e. committee) to share the work of planning a campout. Even with a small group, doing the planning, logistics and program is too much for one person.

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Why are they all now backing out? TWOCUBDAD I think got to the heart of this question. To Bob's point, before someone asks him for line and verse, the most succinct line in the BALOO training is under the handout The Cub Scout Pack Camping Program and states, It is the intention of Cub Scout pack camping to be an adult-youth member camping activity organized by the pack. There are other wordier references. Sorry the trainers led you astray.

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from The Guide to Safe Scouting

 

"The Boy Scouts of America has established the following guidelines for its members' participation in camping activities:

 

Overnight camping by Tiger, Wolf, and Bear Cub Scout dens as dens is not approved and certificates of liability insurance will not be provided by the Boy Scouts of America."

 

note from Bob White

Keep in mind that information appearing in bold type represents BSA Policy and can not be altered.

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Hi folks,

 

I cant explain why the policy is what it is, but I can say that Council AND National both want the kids to go camping. To that end, they do not seem to get in the way of a den leader setting up a camping trip for a den. I dont know of anyone here that has been denied a tour permit for a den camping trip. In fact our Camp Director will even allow a den overnighter at the local camp.

 

Its ME,

I would look at your timing. Maybe you created a conflict with the beginning of baseball season or startup of the spring soccer season, or, perhaps your parents arent campers and dont want to go when its still fairly cool outside. I would also ask about how you are dealing with the sibs? This is an important factor in CS camping trips. I tyically get about 80% attendence at our camping trips, the kids are constantly asking to go, but I do agonize over the dates.

 

You seem to be very excited about doing this campout. Perhaps you set up an overly ambitious program that concerned your parents.

 

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Thanks for the comments fotoscout. Its not as though I am sneaking around. I had our cubmaster sign the permit application and I sent it to council stating that this was a Den campout. It was approved. Its at one of the six-seven sites listed as approved for camping in our area. Its a well known state park in our county. Our Baloo instructors absolutely said we could go den camping. Now maybe the term should be family camping as a den. No boys will come without at least one of their parents and all siblings are invited.

 

To the point. A two night campout may have been too much for only our second campout. The first was a pack.

 

I had no trouble organizing the event. The planning and the work needed does not bother me. In fact I rather enjoy trip palnning. I was just disappointed that I am getting a lower than expected turnout. But after looking at it with a good nights sleep. I will get around 60% to participate at least some during the three day event.

 

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Hey Me -

 

It could be that you got approval because it appeared to be a pack activity, even though it was really a den. In other words, if the Cubmaster signed the tour permit, it "looked" like a pack event to council. That begs the question, If a pack organizes a campout, but on ly boys from one den comes, is it a den campout? ;-)

 

Now, to address your real issue. I think you need to survey the boys and parents and find out if they really want to camp. My den never had an interest in camping. Nor did the den before or after ours. Therefore, our pack went through a 3-4 year period where they did no family camping. The core leadership of the pack, and their associated dens, did not have an interest in it. Now, the pack'; younger families, in particular this year's Tigers and Wolves, are really interested in camping, so the pack is getting back into it again.

 

Also, I agree that two nights is a lot tougher on the people who aren't sure if they want to camp in the first place. I encourage packs to only do a single overnighter. Or, have the option for some folks to come out Saturday morning and join you for the day or the rest of the campout.

 

Good luck, keep your spirts up.

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Bob, you're absolutely correct with the policy on den camping, but let's look at the application. I'm not disagreeing with you, I'm trying to get at the rational behind the policy and understand it better. What ill does this policy prevent? (Actually I think we could all use a conversation that relates to scouting ranther than ancient philosophy for a change.)

 

So what is the difference between a pack and den campout? If your 10-Scout pack are camping beside my 10-Scout den, what's the difference? We both have two-deep leadership, all the Scouts are accompanied by a parent one of which has BALOO training and we've both completed a tour permit which requires the signature of of a pack committee representative. If I've gone to my pack committee and asked that they officially sanction my den campout as a pack campout, does that mean anything? Is there more here than just semantics?

 

Obviously, the short answer is that a pack campout includes boys from more than one den. But no one would suggest that a small pack with only one den is precluded from camping or that a pack campout would have to be cancelled if only boys from one den showed up.

 

 

 

 

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I would certainly like to see National provide an explanation of this rule. This is one those rules that seems to make no sense at all. Furthermore, I suspect that more people manipulate this particular rule than perhaps any other. First there is the pack trip with only one den attending, then theres the den family camping trip, and there are probably a bunch more manipulations of the rule.

 

I think this one falls into the category of Everyones doing it anyway, so maybe National should more time writing guidelines and suggestions for a den camping trip rather than telling us that we cant do it.

 

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If by getting BALOO trained I am the Pack's designated campout organizer. Why would I not be qualified to organize a Den campout? If I am trained for 30-40 boys and families how can national say you are not trained for a 10 boy den? My regional council has acknowledged this and has granted us a tour permit.

 

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If by getting BALOO trained I am the Pack's designated campout organizer.

You are the person certified to see that the pack follows all the health, safety and program rules of Pack Family Camping.

 

Why would I not be qualified to organize a Den campout?

Because Den camping by Tigers, Wolves and Bears, is prohibited by the safety Policies of yje BSA , no exceptions.

If I am trained for 30-40 boys and families how can national say you are not trained for a 10 boy den?

Because as the BALOO certified leader you are there to provide program for the entire pack so that one den does not get all the advantages of camping, and to have more than just a lad and dad situation. Family Camp is meant to be for the entire family at this age.

 

My regional council has acknowledged this and has granted us a tour permit.

 

Not if the camp is within 500 miles they didnt. Your local council approved the outing because it was signed by the Cubmaster and had a BALOO trained leader. They assumed that since you were BALOO trained you knew it had to be a pack event since Den camping for Wolves is forbidden. They made a mistake based on your mistake. Fortunately the consequences of those errors will never have to be dealt with.

 

The Regional office only approves National Tour permits not local ones.

 

My recommendation is for you to review the BALOO info, ask your training chair to loan you a course syllabus. Review all the program, health, and safety, regulations. Plan a pack wide family Camp. The review the Guide to safe scouting manual on elements relating to Cub Camping and the specific activities you want to do. Set a one night overnighter up for the entire pack and their families. Im sure you and the den will have a great time. More importantly it will be a fun, safe, legitimate scout outing.

 

Bob White

 

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