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Cub Scout Camping - Parentless??

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Can a Cub Scout go on a Pack Overnighter without his parent/guardian?


A Cub in our Pack has registered without a parent for our upcoming campout. The parents were going to let another Dad be the Cub's adult for the campout. Looking beyond the Cub Scouting is a "Family Game" issues (and we could even handle the two-deep issues), is this OK with the BSA?


In GTSS, Pack Overnighters says parents should supervise their Scouts. This sounds like a "YES." But, Family Camping says two members of a family and one is a BSA member. That one sounds like a "NO."



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If the Scout -


1) is NOT a TIGER


2) has permission from his parents/guardian to allow this other dad to take him on the campout and to be responsible for him


3) is NOT sleeping in the same tent as this other dad


Then it should be fine. However, this should be the EXCEPTION, and NOT the rule. Otherwise you will end up with all youth and no adults at every camping trip.


Make sure your BALOO camp leader gets permission slips, and health forms, from everyone who will be attending the campout.


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Two members of a family and one is a BSA member.


Well, that could be my BSA registered Bear Cub son and his older/younger brother/sister.


"Parents are responsible for the supervision of their children."


If I cannot go, amd my wife cannot go, and I make arrangements with another adult who will be responcible for my child or act on my behalf ...then I have been responcible for my child by taking care of the situation.


I didn't just tell him he could go camping and drop him off without taking his safety into consideration.


Family Camping


Family camping: an outdoor camping experience, other than resident camping, that involves Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, or Venturing program elements in overnight settings with two or more family members, including at least one BSA member of that family. Parents are responsible for the supervision of their children, and Youth Protection guidelines apply.


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And with respect to "The parents were going to let another Dad be the Cub's adult for the campout . . . ", I'd always double-double check to be sure that this "another Dad" really understands that HE's got the responsibility to look after Scout for the weekend just like his own Son (but with the distance/privacy that YPT requires).


Ya just hate it when the "another Dad" shows up and says "I'm supposed to watch over who??". Or worse . . . doesn't show up!

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What about all of the single parent family's out their, how about all of the grandparents raising boys who cannot camp because of health. Are we not going to let these young men participate in camping because of problems they did not create.


Our solution. Is for a parent or leader, not the outing leader, to take responsibility for the scout. Tent the boys together. Problem solved.


Tenting the boys together also eliminates the boyfriends of mom, uncle or neighbor issues with Youth protection.


The young men we are discussing are the ones who need scouting the most.


No non-scouting siblings with out parents period.(This message has been edited by Basementdweller)

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Basement, you totally misunderstood me: By making arrangements for another parent/ adult to watch my son, I AM being responcible in that my son could go camping without me or his mother being there.I didn't just drop him off.


As far as two family members and one being a BSA member, I was only pointing out that my son who is registered and a member of BSA could take his older or younger brother or sister on a family campout and be in compliance with that statement.


We have a bunch of single parent cub scouts as well as one cub scout who lives with his grandparents because of his mother and father being deceased. Think it was a car accident, but not sure. His grandparents are pretty much not gonna do the campout thing. That scout came with us last fall. As long as he has his own tent or only tents with other scouts and not other adults...he is okay and withing the rules! Assuming somebody agreed to be responcible for him. Which they did!


Speaking of single parents, we have 3 types in our pack:


1: The most common type: Moms and sons. Seems the dads just "weren't ready " to be the "fatherly type" of p[erson yet.


2: Single dads. Rare, but it happens. Mom decided she wanted to "Live her life and party" .


: They are actually married, but one parent or the other decided that Scouting and mentoring are "Boy stuff" and moms need not be there. Technically, not really single, but single as far as scouting is concerned.


We welcome them every day!

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We have lots of parents deployed currently.

Lots of grandparents raising grandkids.


I think most of our pack are single parents.


We do limit the scout parent ratio to 1 adult cannot be responsible for more than 3 boys and even then it depends on the boys. We simply cannot have our ADD/AHD crowd three to one, they can be tough enough one on one.


Amazingly enough we have married couples where dad wants nothing to do with scouting. As a matter of fact, I drop a scout off after the meeting he lives three doors from my house and Dad is sitting on the couch in his underwear playing his xbox. Nice role model. He goes with us with out a parent because mom works 7 days a week and dad "isn't the outdoorsy type".



BSA had to make the rules tight because if you didn't then you would end up with a DL camping with 12 boys alone. I have seen it a couple of times


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It seems our biggest problem is this:

At our last campout, a few parents decided they were going to bed and didn't think nothing of leaving their kids sitting around the campfire....alone.....unattended!


Our CM almost started to tell them to leave.


This year, we specifically addressed that Leaders watched over the scouts ( with help) during den activities, but parents were completely responcible during free and down time.


This year, if we find kids around the fire unattended by parents or a leader who is doing some sort of activity...they will be asked to leave.




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Why don't you ask them to go find their parent? Or if the kid is just sitting around the fire behaving himself, let him be?


Several years ago the rules were more clear and made better sense, Reaper. I don't know why they changed. Basically, the policy was what Scoutnut and Beaver outlined. The one other stipulation was that the tour leader (who that is is up to local interpretation) was not permitted to be responsible for Scouts other than his own children. Two good reason for that, 1) the leader has enough to do without loading up with other peoples' kids, and 2) it prevented folks from skirting the other rules regarding campout leadership and organization. I always appreciated having an out when people asked me to be responsible for their kid.


Blender made a good point too. We our "guardianship" permission slip had to be signed by the parent, the person taking responsiblility for the boy and the tour leader. So everyone was clear about who was responsible for whom. We learned that lesson the hard way.

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"the leader has enough to do without loading up with other peoples' kids" ===> Amen brother! Many times I'd be asked, and the answer was always: "no". I usually ended up asking another Dad to keep an eye on my kids!!


And FWIW, whether it's policy or not, we've also always said that for Pack Overnighters only Webelos can camp without a Parent or other guardian -- so we just took that option off the table for Wolves and Bears. This felt right to us even before we heard the "all scouting is local" mantra: even Webelos can have a rough time without Mom or Dad, and after all we do want families to participate.


Now, if someone were to come up to us with a good reason why they couldn't attend and ask if Bear Johnny can go with Bear Jimmy and his Dad (who is willing to watch over him), sure, we'd let them come have fun (but we don't advertise that).

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Just for the record: ScoutNut indicated that Tiger Cubs are not allowed to camp. Tiger Cubs can participate in Pack Overnighters and Family Camping.


Tiger Cubs may participate in boy-parent excursions, day camps, pack overnighters, or council-organized family camping. --Guide to Safe Scouting, III-Camping.


Tiger Cubs have always participated in our Pack Family Campouts.


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Jeffrey, I think you misinterpreted ScoutNut's comment.


He didn't mean to imply that Tigers can't camp with the Pack, only that a Tiger could not camp with another responsible adult as outlined. Tiger parent/adult partner is required for all activities at the Tiger level.

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Jeffrey - He was saying Tigers couldn't camp parentless (answering my original question).


ALL - My Council has agreed with my thoughts (still waiting for National's response) . . . The Scout (a Wolf) cannot go parentless because of "Family Camping" part of the GTSS (as posted by Scoutfish), I guess taking the view that a parent must actually be there to be responsible for the supervision of their a child [but, this should be "clearer," so the other family member is not a baby brother!].


A Webelos Scout could go parentless because of the blurb in the Age Guidelines of the GTSS (Webelos parent can approve an adult supervisor).


Thanks for the discussion.

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Our pack's rule is each scout must have a parent (or adult partner) with them at the campout. Siblings can "share" the same adult, but other scouts can not.


Also, we don't allow scouts to sleep in a tent without their adult. No all-scout tents for us. Sharing tents is okay as long as each scout in the tent also has his adult in the tent.


Many of our scouts come with the whole family (mom, dad, and siblings).

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