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Does anyone know if National has a policy for min Tent size for camping. Our Troop is looking at buying new tents, and a fellow ASM mentioned at the Committee meeting that National had a 70 square feet of floor space per scout requirement. I do not believe this is true, and have been unable to find any guidance at all. And of course now our committee will not allow us to buy new tents because of this unresolved issue.




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Nah, no such requirement for units.


That's a NCS requirement for council-run summer camps and bases.


People are always gettin' confused by the difference in standards between units and councils.


If they don't believe yeh, ask 'em how big they think da Philmont tents are ;).




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A Timberline 4, a fairly common tent with troops in our area, is less than 70 square feet total. Obviously the capacity stated by the manufacturer requires packing like sardines, but the TL-4 is more than adequate for 2 people, and can be comfortable for 3.


If this were a requirement, backpacking would need to be eliminated as no one could carry enough tent space.


"That's a NCS requirement for council-run summer camps and bases."


Certainly that must be 70 sqare feet for 2 scouts, though? Otherwise, to follow the buddy system, every tent would need to be at least 140 square feet. Here is an example of a tent that is just over 140 sq. ft.: http://www.coleman.com/coleman/ColemanCom/detail.asp?CategoryID=11020&product_id=2000001598

Coleman says this can hold 10 people.

(This message has been edited by The Blancmange)

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Minimum square footage has come up often in my state with regards to tents. In Michigan, there is a law regarding square footage for dormitories, tents or other sleeping quarters for any youth program. This is mostly to prevent camps from cramming people in. In Michigan, the law applies to any camp which is over over five nights in duration, and the shelter is not moved during that time.


For weekend campouts, backpacking, canoe trips... it does not apply. (unless staying int he same tent without moving for over 5 nights)

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I recall reading this somewhere in national BSA documents at one time, but can't find it now. I had looked it up back around 2000 to present to the committee of the troop I was SM in at that time as the troop was sending a small contingent to the 2001 Canadian Jamboree (6 scouts, two leaders) and we needed new tents or to get the current tents refurbished. The committee I had to deal with (not work with, but deal with) was very tight with money and it took things like this to get equipment repaired or upgraded. It's not like the troop was hurting for funds--they had over $3K in the troop savings account for a unit with 20 active scouts.


But I digress. What I found in writing was you needed a minimum of 35 square ft per scout for long term camping of five or more consecutive days. Our four man Timberlines were 56 square ft (7 by 8). Add a vestibule that covers another 14 square ft (roughly 7 by 2) and you get 70 square ft--enough for two scouts by the guidelines of the time.


At least it convinced the committee to authorize repair of the tents and the purchase of vestibules for each tent. I'd have preferred to replace the four tents in question as they were 15 years old at the time, but you take what you could get.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've not ever heard of a minimum size except that two man shelters are reported to be the minimum for Philmont and that they should be placed in a Group rather than distributed so the Bear sees something sizeable that might put it off of investigating rather than several small interesting items.

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