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What does it take for you to cancel an outing?

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I totally agree. From the sounds of it, that was a forecast for a nice breeze and great sleeping weather.


trainerlady, I do truly hope you haven't taken any of my posts to be meant as disparaging. It's hard enough making sure your email to friends has the right tone. On a forum like this, sometimes it can be darn near impossible.


And on one hand, it's a shame the Webelos event didn't go as planned. But on the other, the troop was able to show an ability to react, adapt and overcome a difficult situation.

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When we canceled we did not want to have 20+ boys doing canoe swamp drills for the 1st time with 30+mph winds blowing the canoes away from them. We had a lot of 1st years with us.


Our SM went kayaking that day and got blown all over the place.


That said if it was just me and my boys I might tough it out but there is another standard of care when you are dealing with other people's children.

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Irsap - no offense taken. Hope my response didn't come off that way.


Just a bad turn of events.


We have also had to cancel part of a campout due to rising flood waters into our campsite. We had had several days of multi inch rainfalls. The days going into the campout were dry so the site had dried out but the river system was near its max. It started to rain while we were setting up (seems to be the way all our camps go) nothing bad, just enough to be annoying. However thirty miles away it monsooned for hours. By the next afternoon the park ranger came and told us to leave, in about 12-16 hours we'd be under 6-8 feet of water due to an upstream dam having to be opened for flood relief. We packed up and left. The weather forecast had called for scattered showers not amounting to much for the entire region. No reason to cancel.


Either we're very unlucky or the local weatherman needs to go back to school :)


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We cancelled a pack meeting because of snow. I didn't want to, and neither did the leaders, but a bunch of moms called completely freaking out because we had about 6 inches of snow on the ground.And it started the day of the pack eeting.


Now, seeing as this is NC and 3 inches of snow is practically a blizzrd here...and how people will sometimes go ahead and park their cars in the dicth the day before the snow hits - just to get it over with :) ....well, I guess alot of parents were not sure they could handle the driving..



But I also know that about half the people who were extremely concerned about the driving to a meeting, stayed home and rigged up sleds to their cars and pulled the kids around the neighborhoods!



I guess it was more of an excuse to stay home and play in the snow that safety concerns.


Me? If I thought I could pull it off, I'd have told everybody we were going to have an overnight polar camping. All the schools were closed anyways and my work said to stay home. If there was a way to somehow gather enough food and be able to pull it off...it would have been awesome!


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We've never cancelled a trip in the nine or so years I've been with the troop. I don't think the pack ever cancelled one either.


We've modified a couple, and we've proceeded even when some parents didn't feel like they thought it was safe. Parents turn out to be pretty terrible at assessing this type of risk - we've had people afraid to drive based on media reports and when we went the roads were clear. We've had people afraid a hurricane would extend hundreds of miles inland when we knew it wouldn't. We've had parents afraid for the cold even though their son had previously survived trips that were twenty degrees colder.


We've never had to cancel a trip due to insufficient adult leadership, although we've had a couple adults cancel due to the weather.


Generally speaking we'd have some type of backup plan in place. We could either change our location, or the timing of our arrival (e.g. go Saturday morning instead of Friday evening), or our activity. We've always had enough adults that even if one cancels we've been able to provide enough vehicles.


We did have one trip where the park was closed due to flooding up until the day of the trip.


The most likely reason we'd cancel would be if we had a trip to some specific place (a ski trip, for example) and the destination was closed.


Camping in 30-40 mph winds sounds like fun. We did camp in 55-60mph winds one time. The tents were fine, but there sure are some challenges in other regards.


It depends a lot on what you're prepared for, what your backup plans are, what evacuation options you'd have.


Scoutfish - I'd never have cancelled that trip - I'd just say "Come if you want." People always have the option of staying home. Our pack once did a trip to the Outer Banks that had torrential downpours. A majority of the families moved to a hotel. They still did all the planned activities.


Adapt and keep it fun.


A cold steady miserable rain is indeed the worst possible camping weather in my opinion. Been there, done that. Still didn't cancel. Interesting memories. Sometimes shared suffering builds camaraderie, but you need to know your audience.


If it was younger guys in that situation, I'd look for ways to find some indoor activities to break up the time spent huddling in the rain. With the older guys, we had a great time.

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Well....as circumstances would have it, we just delayed - BUT DID NOT CANCEL our camping trip.


Instead of starting tonight, we are delaying until tommorow morning.


Now, here's te thing: I have camped in my tent during thunder, lightning and a very heavy downpour and stay toasty dry and comfortable.


Matter of fact, when we went to camporee, I had just finished securing and tightening up the rainfly when my son says: "Daaaad, you always put it up, but nothing ever happens!"


And I swear to you, not even 30 minutes later. the air was rumbling, the sky was flashing, the wind picked up and the bottom fell out for a good solid 30 minutes. I'm tralking about at least an inch and a half of rain.


Yep, tent was dry as can be.


Anyways, this wekend is our first pack camping of the year, and many scouts, as well as parents will be camping for the very firt time.


The forecast calls for heavy thunderstorms and lightning, wind gusts up to 40 mph and a chance of hail. This will end around 8:30 pm or so, and a "normal" rain will continue until midnight.


So, Some of us were going to set up our tents anyways, but figured it would suck doing nothing but hanging out in a tent due to the rain, so we delayed.


I think canceling goes hand in hand with the age of the group, the experience of the group, and what the group was supposed to do during that time.


In the exact same situation, I could very well see where an experienced troop or venture crew, or laders such as myself ( going without the pack) wouldn't bat an eye to this weather.



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Last winter, here in Kansas City, we had "snowmageddon." Eighteen inches base snow in 24 hours, blizzard winds at consistent 40MPH, actual temps 0F, you can calculate the wind chill for yourselves.


The whole bloody metro shut down for two days. If I understand correctly, the TV news teams crashed on cots in their studio buildings.


Now, would that have happened in Beavah/Lisabob's necks of the woods? Probably not. Around here, though, this was a citystopping major blizzard.


I agree with Beavah's statement about level of training and level of equipping. True story: One time I was maintenance guy at our Scout reservation on a winter weekend. Troops came in for camping, not well equipped ... think "cotton is rotten" and you have the idea. Wet snow brought them to their knees. We got the units inside and under shelter. Hopefully, leaders learned about hypothermia without a major injury :(

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This past week I was riding a motorcycle in ~70 MPH Santa Ana winds. It was extremely gusty, but nothing that I wouldn't camp in -- it was just wind. Now, mix that in with rain and I might start having second thoughts. This weekend I'll be camping right by a canyon, one of the main places where the Santa Ana winds blow into the San Bernardino valley and it's projected to rain. I'm still going -- I'll just bring a couple extra towels, some extra clothes, some plastic clothes to go over whatever else I'm wearing.


Then again, perhaps I'm just used to it. The School District up here purchased the land that the high school is on for $1 because the winds were so strong that nobody wanted to build there. It was initially an elementary school and during periods of high wind the teachers used to line up and hang onto kids jackets as the kids walked to the buses.


I certainly wouldn't mountain climb in high winds or hike the Grand Canyon or something like that, but ordinary camping? No problem.


Lightning, on the other hand, that'll cancel a campout for me fairly quickly. I never did like the idea of that "crouch down and huddle as close to the ground as you can with only your feet on the ground".

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Yah, that's an interestin' one, Engineer61. Goes to John-in-KC's point. Out west it's really funny, because yeh have people who live at lower altitudes and by and large never see or experience snow on da roads as a regular part of life. So they go up into da mountains and hit snow or ice and are often incompetent.


Reminds me once of drivin' through north Georgia or southern North Carolina when they were gettin' some flurries. Only a couple of inches of snow on da road. Got to a point where the state police were closing the highway. So being an EMT and figurin' they had some big accident or somesuch, I stopped and asked what was up. They tell me da road was closed for snow, and I just started laughin'. Trooper asks me where I'm from, I mention my northern state credentials, and he just waves me through. :)




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In the Tampa area if we had to cancel for lightning we would have to cancel all the time. We get a LOT of storms; hence some of our team names (Tampa Bay Lightning, Tampa Bay Storm, etc. Usually we avoid water, etc if lightning is visible.


We have to be much more careful with cold as folks just are not prepared for it.

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