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Owl62

Scout Camp Latrines

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Most of the Scout Camp campsite latrines I have seen are in only moderately good condition and most are in poor condition. Most do not have electricity, or hot water. Most have usually two toilets, a urinal, and a cold water shower.

 

I was at a camp two years ago where similar campsite latrines where almost brand new - very good condition.

 

Camp Pioneer near Mena, AK has new concrete building latrines with several flush toilets in private stalls, several individual showers (hot water!) in private stalls and seveal sinks with hot water. The sinks and toilets where all real toilets and sinks. A nice setup - usually one of these latrine buildings between two campsites.

 

Many camps have a central latrine with showers and flush toilets - often at the pool that are available for all to use.

 

I have used outhouses very often in my life so that does not bother me too much - although it does many of the Scouts. But I do like a hot water shower.

 

I think that campsite latrines need a good deal of improvement and the addition of at least hot water.

 

I was just wondering how you all feel about it and what your council camp latrines are like.

 

 

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Our Council operates two camp sites.

One is very primitive and not used for long term camping. This site has only a couple of wells that provide drinking water. The toilets are all out houses.

The other where we have our summer camp program has all new shower houses, with flush toilets and hot and cold running water.

The hope is that one day soon we will up date the other site. The only thing needed is money.

Eamonn

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I don't know what the fuss is. A seat over a hole in the ground is better than digging a cat hole in the woods.

 

A hot shower might be nice but I can live for a week without a flush toilet.

 

 

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Some time ago the local heath department caused us to eliminate the outhouses and install flush toilets throughout camp. The end result was some new facilities and some modified outhouses. The modified outhouses are actually not too bad, the new bathroom facilities turned out to be a disaster.

 

It appears that council got a local contractor/and part time architect to do the design. The primary design consideration was to prevent vandalism, so we have facilities that seal up very nicely..but they have no air circulation. You have to remember that these facilities are cleaned and washed down at least once a day during the summer, and they are in constant use by a bunch of kids who..well you all know the rest the story.

 

Anyway, the result is that the facilities are always damp and dirty. They smell terribly (worst than any outhouse), and at any one time fully 1/3 of the toilets are out of service because of kid stuff. The constant dampness has caused all sorts of problems with the electric and the finish material used on the interior spaces. Bugs, mold, mildew, etc. are all out of control.

 

Ive been in many outdoor facilities that were designed from the ground up to be campground bathroom facilities. Unfortunately these never had a real design process. SO THE MESSAGE IS, for any of you who are looking to rebuild your camp bathrooms, make sure you get someone familiar with this type of design to review it before you spend megabucks building it.

 

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A latrine with flush toilets? I think that is an oxymoron. In my book, a latrine is a hole in the ground that is used as a receptacle for human waste.

 

At our council's scout camp (one of two), all have latrines but one industrious troop donated the labor and materials to install flush toilets and a pair of sinks with running water. All troops have the same opportunity to provide the same.

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Our Council has two camps, both are set up similarly with regards to facilities. Both have a central shower areas with hot water (if you get there at the right time, earlier in the day the better) and flush toliets. The camp sites all have primative latrines. Two years ago I tried adding lime to the pit to combat the odor and it works. A 40 pound bag of lime on sunday and another 40 pounds on wednesday took the stink right out of the situation.

 

I am all for modernization and making things nice for the boys, but I have never proved to be terribly consistent. Our Primitive latrines are all wood, built on a conrete slab and every day the whole edifice gets a hosing down. (each latrine also features a hand washing station and water spigot) With a high pressure nozzle and a "barn broom" (the older guys know what I mean, the younger ones ask somebody to point one out to you)and a little brisk sweeping and the place is as clean as it needs be. If a kids refusal to go to camp is based on "having an icky place as a toilet" or no flush toilets then we might have to reopen Wheelers topic on what is means to be a man (or a woman or ok how about just acting mature?). About three years ago they instlled toliet seats, it was a step up over the 2x4 framed holes. Camp latrines were never designed to be reading rooms. They serve an utilitarian purpose.

 

N.B. One well meaning adult, against my warnings, thought adding a little bleach to the daily hosings would add to the freshened environment. All it did was render the structure unusable for about 12 hours as chlorine produces some unfortunate chemical reactions when indiscriminatley mixed with various organic substances which are manifested in the prescence of noxious fumes. Even more noxious then those occuring naturally,

 

Fotoscout, I understand that vandalism by non-scouts is an issue, but vandalsim caused by scouts is abhorrent and as disgusting as any topic ever broached on this forum. Incredibly it happens at the Council camps where the troop goes as well. YOuth Protection says scoutmasters are to refrain from randomly going in the showers so every year a few despicables have to show what a genius they are by trashing out the place. Of course these perps are rarely found. If they would be, payment for repairing their damage plus 50 percent would not be severe enough. A very nice facility wrecked a few times can take the will out of providing nice facilities to those who act like animals quite quickly. You get what I mean? Lets not blame the Ranger or designer if the true cause of the problem are hooligans masquerading in scout apparel(This message has been edited by OldGreyEagle)

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The unit sites at both our council camps have 3 standard and 1 handicap seat stalls over a concrete pit. 2 urinals are also part of the mix. There is a gang sink with cold water on the outside.

 

Showers are 100-500 yards away at the pool.

 

Ranger tells me the latrine plan come direct from the national architect's office.

 

John

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Chlorine also kills all the good bacteria that keeps the latrine working.

 

Years ago, I was told that a properly functioning latrine doesn't stink. The proof was that the latrines at that camp didn't stink.

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Our summer camp used to have latrines consisting of a plastic or metal urinal with a pipe and valve to flush, two outhouse type toilet stands that shared a stall (couldn't design in a divider or something!?), a large galvanized pan sink with a pipe full of holes and foot activated valve, a garden hose, and a drinking fountain. Basically an outhouse with a flush urinal. The pits are made of cinder block but have no bottom, so it is too dry to be pumped out by conventional means.

 

These structures are filling up to the seats, and the health dept. let us keep them grandfathere claused in until we could replace them. Our new latries are two individual flush toilets in seperate stalls over a cement septic tank, and a ceramic sink w/ cold water and a drinking fountain and hose on the outside. Much more popular, less likely to run into a porcupine gnawing on the pee soaked wood by the urinal during a midnight bathroom brake.

 

Our shower house is "locker room style". No stalls. It's a concrete slab with a floor drain, a privacy wall (no roof) and a pipe running around the top of the wall with t's and shower heads every few feet. The shower is one temperature, we keep the water heaters set really low. You pull a chain on a valve to make the shower flow. The hottest one is nearest to the heater, the coldest at the far end of the pipe. We set it so that the first shower is moderately hot, but not dangerous. Attached to our open air shower area is a dressing building. We have youth and adult seperate shower times, and females can use the individual stalls on the far side of the lake at the old resort cabins the camp owns. We had one flush toilet in the camp office that was overused. We had to have the septic pumped very often. Now, with flushers in all the sites the burden has been dispersed.

 

The old resort has one men's bathroom, one women's. Each has one shower stall and a toilet, sink, electric outlets...... Each individual cabin used to have an outhouse too, but those have recently been semi-retired. These cabins are where female staffers, families, and the really old gentelmen on staff stay. It's a half mile walk from the main camp area so the rustic effect isn't lost.

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My council has three camps.

 

One was a summer camp until the 70s. For latrines all it has is two normal bathrooms in the lodge/cabin/dining hall building.

 

Another had its last year of Boy Scout camp in 94. It has latrines in various states of (dis)repair at each campsite. These latrines are a small step above a true outhouses. They mostly have a pilot/copilot seat configuration, a urinal, trough like sink (cold water only), and water spigot. Hot showers are available at the pool, and there is a shower in the staff lodge and the medical lodge as well. There are also a few flush toilets in major buildings.

 

The current summer camp has essentially the same latrine configuration as the other camp, except the latrines are in far better condition due to the greater amount of maintenance money available. Showers are also better. There are two hot water equipped shower houses for campers, plus staff showers. The only flush toilets are in staff areas.

 

 

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What is this? Flush toilets? showers in site??

When we go camping we have latrines and we have a shower building which is open-style and it seems okay. We do not have running water in our sites. We have a pump, but thankfully it isnt too deep :) only about 10 pumps till water comes. Unlike the camp we goto in the fall. at our site at the bottom of a steep hill we have a spring to get water from. At the top, it takes around 60 pumps to get the water even to start flowing.

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"Camp Pioneer near Mena, AK has new concrete building latrines with several flush toilets in private stalls, several individual showers (hot water!) in private stalls and seveal sinks with hot water. The sinks and toilets where all real toilets and sinks. A nice setup - usually one of these latrine buildings between two campsites."

 

I got back from summer camp a couple days ago with my troop. Camp director at our pre camp meeting told us that national is pushing for these individual stalls/showers now because of the all the sexual harrasment stuff now a days. However not only do we have this new building up with 6 showers and 8 toilets but the group shower house which is on the other side of camp is still opened for those camping in that area. All campsites have a urnial with 2 toilet seats and cold water sink area. The new shower area which had its first use this year is really nice and as far as I know no problems with the toilets or anything. Just a nice convenience. (especially when its in walking distance of your campsite)

 

BTW also this year adult leaders are required to wear colored wrist bands all the time at summer camp for protection reasons. I was wondering if any other camps started this yet.

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JIMMYD are you are talking about Camp Pioneer in Mena, Arkansas(AR) Mena, Alaska(AK).

 

Cove Creek Scout Reservation located outside of Damascus, AR converted to flush toilets and hot showers in the campsites just a few years ago. The cost is horrendous, which is why most camps haven't done it. I think the hot showers aren't in every site, but there is a shower facility in each group of sites based on their geographic location. The main shower house is still down at the pool area.

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We had to wear wristbands this year. Thing was, adults were originally given red, but by the end of the week, almost everyone in camp had red ones if they didnt have their other one still.

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hops,

We went to wrist bands last year. Sort of feel like I'm at the local amusement park with an all day ride pass!

 

Ed Mori

Troop 1

1 Peter 4:10

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