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Exibar

high adventure troop requirements?

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Am I the only one who sees the that this will damage the rest of the troops program???????

 

Two weekends a month backpacking with the unit PLUS a regular troop outing. I imagine the regular troop campouts will suffer.

What I'm saying is you are basing your rant from a vivid imagination. Sure, if it were your troop, the OPs plan would likely be destructive. But you really don't know. If you want the discussion to go that directions, (and I think it is a good discussion) then lead into it without implying or attacking the OP. Barry

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I always get a bit nervous once people start making up rules for the boys.... It's a totally obvious "flashing red" sign "with warning bell/alarm" of an adult-led program.

 

Stosh

Totally agree, but if one has a great boy-led program, This rule-making attitude could be a slippery slope that could wreck a great program.

 

Stosh

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Am I the only one who sees the that this will damage the rest of the troops program???????

 

Two weekends a month backpacking with the unit PLUS a regular troop outing. I imagine the regular troop campouts will suffer.

I don't see it as a rant,

 

I was making a statement.

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Am I the only one who sees the that this will damage the rest of the troops program???????

 

Two weekends a month backpacking with the unit PLUS a regular troop outing. I imagine the regular troop campouts will suffer.

Yeah, that was rather tame for BD. Only 7 question marks and one shouted word. No personal attacks, name calling or other unscout like behavior.

 

BD, to be more exact. 1 question and 1 statement.

 

So Exibar, that is a lot of scouting time. Do your participants normally put that much time into scouting ? My wife and cub son would have an issue.

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My sons troop attends Northern Tier, Philmont and Florida Sea Base on a rotating basis. Troop of about 40 boys. They are able to send a crew of 10 boys and 2 adults to one of the bases each summer. The trip of the year is announced. Those interested attend an informational meeting where the approximate costs are outlined, list of gear provided, and a list of tasks that need to be accomplished reviewed. Two attendees must take and past Wilderness First Aid, first aid kit needs to be developed, someone has to make travel plans, someone has to be crew leader/asst crew leader, crew chaplin, payment schedule adopted, physicals due by date, etc. Parents attend because the costs usually run $2000-$3000 per scout. Fund raising opportunites are discussed. Attending and participating in all the fund raisers MAY get the scout close but only through lots of hard work. Parents need to know there will likely be out of pocket costs.

 

Troop calender may include some troop outings that tend to favor the trip of the year. Maybe a canoe trip, or a backpacking trip will be included in the calendar. The troop does what it can to help but does not completely change its focus because a few scouts are high adventuring. Son went to Philmont 2 yrs ago. All the scouts were at least 15 yr old, Life or Eagle, and the adults had been active ASMs for 4+ years. Only just to explain that they all had experience. The only restrictions were those imposed by Philmont (14, BMI, Valid Physcial, and pay). The philmont crew had maybe 4 backpacking trips the year they went to Philmont. I believe only 1 trip was part of a troop outing. The others were weekend trips the crew took as training trips. They bought and packed food as similar to Philmont as feasible. Most scouts made most outings. Adults did step up their personal exercise regieme to make sure they were not embarassed on the trail. Everyone knew who would be the problems and who would be the solutions after the first trip. No surprises. The boys had been patrol and troop mates for years. A few stepped up who typically would falter. Everyone had a bad day or did at least one stupid thing. Thats life.

 

The first trip all were tired. A map reading error took them on an extra mile or two. Too much stuff in a few guys packs. Not enough water for others. Typical stuff. By trip three, most of the issuess had been worked out. They took a strenuous trip. Baldy, Tooth of Time and about 65 miles. Everybody made it back alive with no incidents that more training trips would have prevented.

 

All that to say, 18 backpacking trips in the 9 months leading up to a 1 week trip is significant overkill. 10 miles a day is about 4-5 hours of backpacking. A 14 yr old, 125lb scout should be able to do that with no problems after three training weekends. The training will pare down the weight in the pack and teach them how to pace themselves. Just make sure that after the first training trip, that all other trips include at least one day 15 miles or longer with the other day being at least 8-10 miles. The longer distance stresses emotions and reserves and you see who sucks it up and who folds.

 

For money, I would recommend you require a non-refundable down payment of $100. This weeds out the half-hearted. They may have the opportunity to "sell" their down payment if they can find another scout to buy their spot. Limit the trip to X number of participants. All money must be paid in full by date Y with minimum monthly payments due until paid in full. Only partial refunds because trip funds will have been spent on first aid kit, WFA training, travel arrangments, group gear, etc. As a troop leader you already know who will likely be slow payers based on past summer camp and other expenses. Offering camperships is a possibility if you have benefactors willing to help.

 

If you think the troop will continue to particpate in trips like this, then the troop can buy the group gear back at the end of the trip to reduce overall costs to the scouts. For instance, backpacking stoves, group first aid kit, map cases, GPS units, dining flys, backpacking tents, etc. Son's troop goes every year but has no troop gear that goes on the trips. Some how the group gear gets dispersed between the attending boys. My son completed his Triple Crown this year having attended all three bases. Only thing we have is a backpacking stove we bought so there would be enough for the crew.

 

Recommend you have a specific adult be the contact point and overseer/advisor to the scouts leading/planning the trip. The scoutmaster does not have time to be both an SM and trip planner/leader.

 

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My sons troop attends Northern Tier, Philmont and Florida Sea Base on a rotating basis. Troop of about 40 boys. They are able to send a crew of 10 boys and 2 adults to one of the bases each summer. The trip of the year is announced. Those interested attend an informational meeting where the approximate costs are outlined, list of gear provided, and a list of tasks that need to be accomplished reviewed. Two attendees must take and past Wilderness First Aid, first aid kit needs to be developed, someone has to make travel plans, someone has to be crew leader/asst crew leader, crew chaplin, payment schedule adopted, physicals due by date, etc. Parents attend because the costs usually run $2000-$3000 per scout. Fund raising opportunites are discussed. Attending and participating in all the fund raisers MAY get the scout close but only through lots of hard work. Parents need to know there will likely be out of pocket costs.

 

Troop calender may include some troop outings that tend to favor the trip of the year. Maybe a canoe trip, or a backpacking trip will be included in the calendar. The troop does what it can to help but does not completely change its focus because a few scouts are high adventuring. Son went to Philmont 2 yrs ago. All the scouts were at least 15 yr old, Life or Eagle, and the adults had been active ASMs for 4+ years. Only just to explain that they all had experience. The only restrictions were those imposed by Philmont (14, BMI, Valid Physcial, and pay). The philmont crew had maybe 4 backpacking trips the year they went to Philmont. I believe only 1 trip was part of a troop outing. The others were weekend trips the crew took as training trips. They bought and packed food as similar to Philmont as feasible. Most scouts made most outings. Adults did step up their personal exercise regieme to make sure they were not embarassed on the trail. Everyone knew who would be the problems and who would be the solutions after the first trip. No surprises. The boys had been patrol and troop mates for years. A few stepped up who typically would falter. Everyone had a bad day or did at least one stupid thing. Thats life.

 

The first trip all were tired. A map reading error took them on an extra mile or two. Too much stuff in a few guys packs. Not enough water for others. Typical stuff. By trip three, most of the issuess had been worked out. They took a strenuous trip. Baldy, Tooth of Time and about 65 miles. Everybody made it back alive with no incidents that more training trips would have prevented.

 

All that to say, 18 backpacking trips in the 9 months leading up to a 1 week trip is significant overkill. 10 miles a day is about 4-5 hours of backpacking. A 14 yr old, 125lb scout should be able to do that with no problems after three training weekends. The training will pare down the weight in the pack and teach them how to pace themselves. Just make sure that after the first training trip, that all other trips include at least one day 15 miles or longer with the other day being at least 8-10 miles. The longer distance stresses emotions and reserves and you see who sucks it up and who folds.

 

For money, I would recommend you require a non-refundable down payment of $100. This weeds out the half-hearted. They may have the opportunity to "sell" their down payment if they can find another scout to buy their spot. Limit the trip to X number of participants. All money must be paid in full by date Y with minimum monthly payments due until paid in full. Only partial refunds because trip funds will have been spent on first aid kit, WFA training, travel arrangments, group gear, etc. As a troop leader you already know who will likely be slow payers based on past summer camp and other expenses. Offering camperships is a possibility if you have benefactors willing to help.

 

If you think the troop will continue to particpate in trips like this, then the troop can buy the group gear back at the end of the trip to reduce overall costs to the scouts. For instance, backpacking stoves, group first aid kit, map cases, GPS units, dining flys, backpacking tents, etc. Son's troop goes every year but has no troop gear that goes on the trips. Some how the group gear gets dispersed between the attending boys. My son completed his Triple Crown this year having attended all three bases. Only thing we have is a backpacking stove we bought so there would be enough for the crew.

 

Recommend you have a specific adult be the contact point and overseer/advisor to the scouts leading/planning the trip. The scoutmaster does not have time to be both an SM and trip planner/leader.

Or a specific scout looking for POR could be the contact point so that the troop can move more towards a boy-led troop. :)

 

There is enough track record for this troop to start putting some of that boy leadership to some useful purpose.

 

There's a ton of sub-leadership opportunities, gear retention - Quartermaster, etc.

 

My apologies but when I read about such programs, the half-hearted need to be weeded out because they really aren't invested in the idea. Sounds good, but when the rubber hits the road, they are history. Why is that?

 

If all the boys were rolling up their sleeves to make it happen, there wouldn't be any half-hearted boys involved and one would not need a $100 deposit to figure that out.

 

Stosh

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The reason Stosh is because a lot of priorities can change over two year time for both busy adults and teen boys growing into men. I hate planning that far ahead just for that reason. Like resqman, we also learned to require a non refundable down payment to help the participants through their buyers remorse periods. Some treks have more scouts than slots like Boundary Waters, so we want first dibs to the more committed scouts. I also liked teaching scouts a real life responsibility of accountibility. I agree that scouts should be responsible for planning; my last SPL before I retired as SM planned 100% of a week long backpacking trek in Montana. That was always his dream and the crew had a great time. The adults did absolutly nothing except drive and hike. He was special, but all our adventure treks require a scout to initiate the trek and find a crew (adventure patrol) which includes two adults before presenting their plan to the committee. If the committee thinks it a reasonable plan (they always have), then that scout is responsibile for the trip happening. He doesn't have to do all the work, but he does have to delegate responsibilities. And that youth can be any age. We once had a 12 year old learning handicapped scout plan a weekend of visiting amusement parks to ride roller coasters. His dream was to become a Roller Coaster Engineer. His parents were very proud, but that took some doing because of his handicap. We had another 12 year old plan a biking trek. Besides learnring the basic skills of planning, the thing about scouts doing the planning is that young scouts learn by watching the older scouts that they can do whatever they dream. Our troop averages about four adventure treks a yearof various activities from snow skiing to scuba in Mexico. My goal as a scout leader was to create an enviroment where a boy could live out his wildest dreams. I know of no other youth organization that does that like a Scouting Troop. Barry

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My sons troop attends Northern Tier, Philmont and Florida Sea Base on a rotating basis. Troop of about 40 boys. They are able to send a crew of 10 boys and 2 adults to one of the bases each summer. The trip of the year is announced. Those interested attend an informational meeting where the approximate costs are outlined, list of gear provided, and a list of tasks that need to be accomplished reviewed. Two attendees must take and past Wilderness First Aid, first aid kit needs to be developed, someone has to make travel plans, someone has to be crew leader/asst crew leader, crew chaplin, payment schedule adopted, physicals due by date, etc. Parents attend because the costs usually run $2000-$3000 per scout. Fund raising opportunites are discussed. Attending and participating in all the fund raisers MAY get the scout close but only through lots of hard work. Parents need to know there will likely be out of pocket costs.

 

Troop calender may include some troop outings that tend to favor the trip of the year. Maybe a canoe trip, or a backpacking trip will be included in the calendar. The troop does what it can to help but does not completely change its focus because a few scouts are high adventuring. Son went to Philmont 2 yrs ago. All the scouts were at least 15 yr old, Life or Eagle, and the adults had been active ASMs for 4+ years. Only just to explain that they all had experience. The only restrictions were those imposed by Philmont (14, BMI, Valid Physcial, and pay). The philmont crew had maybe 4 backpacking trips the year they went to Philmont. I believe only 1 trip was part of a troop outing. The others were weekend trips the crew took as training trips. They bought and packed food as similar to Philmont as feasible. Most scouts made most outings. Adults did step up their personal exercise regieme to make sure they were not embarassed on the trail. Everyone knew who would be the problems and who would be the solutions after the first trip. No surprises. The boys had been patrol and troop mates for years. A few stepped up who typically would falter. Everyone had a bad day or did at least one stupid thing. Thats life.

 

The first trip all were tired. A map reading error took them on an extra mile or two. Too much stuff in a few guys packs. Not enough water for others. Typical stuff. By trip three, most of the issuess had been worked out. They took a strenuous trip. Baldy, Tooth of Time and about 65 miles. Everybody made it back alive with no incidents that more training trips would have prevented.

 

All that to say, 18 backpacking trips in the 9 months leading up to a 1 week trip is significant overkill. 10 miles a day is about 4-5 hours of backpacking. A 14 yr old, 125lb scout should be able to do that with no problems after three training weekends. The training will pare down the weight in the pack and teach them how to pace themselves. Just make sure that after the first training trip, that all other trips include at least one day 15 miles or longer with the other day being at least 8-10 miles. The longer distance stresses emotions and reserves and you see who sucks it up and who folds.

 

For money, I would recommend you require a non-refundable down payment of $100. This weeds out the half-hearted. They may have the opportunity to "sell" their down payment if they can find another scout to buy their spot. Limit the trip to X number of participants. All money must be paid in full by date Y with minimum monthly payments due until paid in full. Only partial refunds because trip funds will have been spent on first aid kit, WFA training, travel arrangments, group gear, etc. As a troop leader you already know who will likely be slow payers based on past summer camp and other expenses. Offering camperships is a possibility if you have benefactors willing to help.

 

If you think the troop will continue to particpate in trips like this, then the troop can buy the group gear back at the end of the trip to reduce overall costs to the scouts. For instance, backpacking stoves, group first aid kit, map cases, GPS units, dining flys, backpacking tents, etc. Son's troop goes every year but has no troop gear that goes on the trips. Some how the group gear gets dispersed between the attending boys. My son completed his Triple Crown this year having attended all three bases. Only thing we have is a backpacking stove we bought so there would be enough for the crew.

 

Recommend you have a specific adult be the contact point and overseer/advisor to the scouts leading/planning the trip. The scoutmaster does not have time to be both an SM and trip planner/leader.

wow, Reqman, thank you very much for your reply this was *very* helpful!

This was exactly what I was looking for, how another troop does this type of thing and not criticism or rants or "well your troop should be more boy led and not adult led".... My troop is boy led, and it's the BOYS that are asking for help planning this trip of a lifetime. I'm helping them with the finer points so that next time they can plan completely on their own and simply present their plan to me to see if they missed anything. Afterall, my job as Scoutmaster is to help and guide the boys right? :-)

Thanks again!!

Mike B

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The reason Stosh is because a lot of priorities can change over two year time for both busy adults and teen boys growing into men. I hate planning that far ahead just for that reason. Like resqman, we also learned to require a non refundable down payment to help the participants through their buyers remorse periods. Some treks have more scouts than slots like Boundary Waters, so we want first dibs to the more committed scouts. I also liked teaching scouts a real life responsibility of accountibility. I agree that scouts should be responsible for planning; my last SPL before I retired as SM planned 100% of a week long backpacking trek in Montana. That was always his dream and the crew had a great time. The adults did absolutly nothing except drive and hike. He was special, but all our adventure treks require a scout to initiate the trek and find a crew (adventure patrol) which includes two adults before presenting their plan to the committee. If the committee thinks it a reasonable plan (they always have), then that scout is responsibile for the trip happening. He doesn't have to do all the work, but he does have to delegate responsibilities. And that youth can be any age. We once had a 12 year old learning handicapped scout plan a weekend of visiting amusement parks to ride roller coasters. His dream was to become a Roller Coaster Engineer. His parents were very proud, but that took some doing because of his handicap. We had another 12 year old plan a biking trek. Besides learnring the basic skills of planning, the thing about scouts doing the planning is that young scouts learn by watching the older scouts that they can do whatever they dream. Our troop averages about four adventure treks a yearof various activities from snow skiing to scuba in Mexico. My goal as a scout leader was to create an enviroment where a boy could live out his wildest dreams. I know of no other youth organization that does that like a Scouting Troop. Barry
so true!!! there are limits or boundaries that have to be imposed, but nothing hard set in stone... the scouts have to learn to be accountable, they can't say they'll do something, and then not do it and expect zero consequences...

some of the best trips are started and planned by the boys :-) I'll plan maybe one outing a year for my troop, helps to give the boys ideas of what's possible... the rest are on the boy's shoulders (aside from our annual Turkey cook campout... that's a given every year and all hands on deck!)

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Jumping in here a little late... we did a Yellowstone trip back in 2009. We set a few rules, 14 and/or first class, if not, then an adult would have to accompany the scout. With regard to adults, the best way I found to weed them out is to insist on a non-refundable deposit up front, say $100 or more.... or state that the deposit must be received 3 months prior to the trip... The way we handled fundraisers is that we track hours the scout participates in the fundraiser and he receives an appropriate share to his scout account - use if for anything they want, including the deposit.

 

Best thing is lots of communication and education up front. Emphasize the physical requirements of the hike, especially with the out of shapers and be honest but kind.

 

We took 21 people out there from California, rented 2 vans, spent one night at Granpas in Elko, then one at a local scout council day camp in Idaho. Got a group camp in Yellowstone first night, then we split into three groups (max 8 per group) and did separate trips for 3 more nights, then all finished at Old Faithful. Another night at a group camp in the park then drove back, stopping once more in Elko. With our fundraisers, discounts, saving money by staying at Granpas, etc... we had a final cost of $135 per person, which included vehicle, gas, permits, 2 meals, campsites, etc. Backpacking food was left up to each group.

 

Make sure you delegate some of the work, preferably to scouts but adults as well.

 

Send in your route requests as early as possible. The ranger actually called me and he and I worked out all three trips over the phone, he was VERY accommodating for our group.

 

This was an outstanding experience for our troop. We still talk about it.... Good Luck!

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wow, guys.... please dont' take this the wrong way you're all a great bunch of guys.. all feedback is a gift, and I appreciate it all, really.... but honestly, many replies to me about how my troop should be more boy led, I shouldn't be planning this the boys should, etc etc... that type of feedback doesn't help nor comes close to answering my question I posed.... some posts had some useful thoughts though and for those i thank you, Resqman hit the nail right on the head though, thank you very much ;-) I see your point about the 18 training trips, which really amounts to 9 additional treks as the other 9 would involve the entire troop and be the monthly outing.

 

all the boys in my troop have backpacking gear, although Im sure more gear/ better gear will want to be purchased, as that is one of our most looked forward to activities. they all know how to use their gear... but I see that many pack way too much, I'm hoping the training trips will help them lighten their load.... we'll have a couple full shakedowns in between during a troop meeting as well, so the entire troop will benefit.

I see Resqman's point about 18 being too many.... maybe I'll just work in a couple extra training trips along with having the monthly outing more geared toward trek preparedness...

the 14 year old age limit is because I do not want newly crossed over scouts to attend this trek. For the most part they'll be prone to home sickness and in general won't be as prepared. Of course, this is a guideline and if there is a scout that my SPL and I decide is ready and wants to go, and can pay for it, he'll be welcome.... the others will be in scout camp locally for that week....

 

someone mentioned the merit badges don't prove a thing that they're just checkmarks on a list... they do actually... commitment, and mommy and daddy cannot buy them a badge, they have to be earned... I'm thinking that perhaps just Orienteering and First Aid though.... This is not too much to ask of my current scouts to complete in 1.5 years... I dont' care if it's at camp this year or merit badge colleges, or on their own that they earn the badges... I want them to be committed to the trek with something other than having the money to attend... that's also why I want to make the training treks mandatory for both scouts and adults attending... can't make the training treks because you don't feel like it? can't go to yellowstone, sorry :-(

 

I'm in a very affluent town, and some (not all, but some) feel money is the answer to everything... part of our mission as Adult leaders is to teach these boys that hard work, commitment, and accountability will get you further in life than Mom and Dad paying your way.... and we have to be fair to those that cannot simply whip out the checkbook as easily as others...

 

fundraising is big on the list for the trek too... but won't come anywhere near covering 100%.... the parents have been told without fund raising it will be about $1000 out of pocket, but we're hoping to bring the cost down with fundraising, $100 due first meeting in January, $20 each month after that, with the balance due around March April 2015, before we leave when we finalize our airline tickets, etc.

 

In any case, keep the comments coming, I appreciate them all, if anyone has any thing else to add as to how their troop prepares for a high adventure trip that will be in the $1000 range per boy, I'm all ears! :-)

 

thank you all again! feedback truely is a gift, and I have some great thoughts to ponder and to work through with my PLC now! :-)

 

Mike B

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wow, guys.... please dont' take this the wrong way you're all a great bunch of guys.. all feedback is a gift, and I appreciate it all, really.... but honestly, many replies to me about how my troop should be more boy led, I shouldn't be planning this the boys should, etc etc... that type of feedback doesn't help nor comes close to answering my question I posed.... some posts had some useful thoughts though and for those i thank you, Resqman hit the nail right on the head though, thank you very much ;-) I see your point about the 18 training trips, which really amounts to 9 additional treks as the other 9 would involve the entire troop and be the monthly outing.

 

all the boys in my troop have backpacking gear, although Im sure more gear/ better gear will want to be purchased, as that is one of our most looked forward to activities. they all know how to use their gear... but I see that many pack way too much, I'm hoping the training trips will help them lighten their load.... we'll have a couple full shakedowns in between during a troop meeting as well, so the entire troop will benefit.

I see Resqman's point about 18 being too many.... maybe I'll just work in a couple extra training trips along with having the monthly outing more geared toward trek preparedness...

the 14 year old age limit is because I do not want newly crossed over scouts to attend this trek. For the most part they'll be prone to home sickness and in general won't be as prepared. Of course, this is a guideline and if there is a scout that my SPL and I decide is ready and wants to go, and can pay for it, he'll be welcome.... the others will be in scout camp locally for that week....

 

someone mentioned the merit badges don't prove a thing that they're just checkmarks on a list... they do actually... commitment, and mommy and daddy cannot buy them a badge, they have to be earned... I'm thinking that perhaps just Orienteering and First Aid though.... This is not too much to ask of my current scouts to complete in 1.5 years... I dont' care if it's at camp this year or merit badge colleges, or on their own that they earn the badges... I want them to be committed to the trek with something other than having the money to attend... that's also why I want to make the training treks mandatory for both scouts and adults attending... can't make the training treks because you don't feel like it? can't go to yellowstone, sorry :-(

 

I'm in a very affluent town, and some (not all, but some) feel money is the answer to everything... part of our mission as Adult leaders is to teach these boys that hard work, commitment, and accountability will get you further in life than Mom and Dad paying your way.... and we have to be fair to those that cannot simply whip out the checkbook as easily as others...

 

fundraising is big on the list for the trek too... but won't come anywhere near covering 100%.... the parents have been told without fund raising it will be about $1000 out of pocket, but we're hoping to bring the cost down with fundraising, $100 due first meeting in January, $20 each month after that, with the balance due around March April 2015, before we leave when we finalize our airline tickets, etc.

 

In any case, keep the comments coming, I appreciate them all, if anyone has any thing else to add as to how their troop prepares for a high adventure trip that will be in the $1000 range per boy, I'm all ears! :-)

 

thank you all again! feedback truely is a gift, and I have some great thoughts to ponder and to work through with my PLC now! :-)

 

Mike B

I didn't see where anyone one mentioned money.

 

Still curious how big the troop is.

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wow, guys.... please dont' take this the wrong way you're all a great bunch of guys.. all feedback is a gift, and I appreciate it all, really.... but honestly, many replies to me about how my troop should be more boy led, I shouldn't be planning this the boys should, etc etc... that type of feedback doesn't help nor comes close to answering my question I posed.... some posts had some useful thoughts though and for those i thank you, Resqman hit the nail right on the head though, thank you very much ;-) I see your point about the 18 training trips, which really amounts to 9 additional treks as the other 9 would involve the entire troop and be the monthly outing.

 

all the boys in my troop have backpacking gear, although Im sure more gear/ better gear will want to be purchased, as that is one of our most looked forward to activities. they all know how to use their gear... but I see that many pack way too much, I'm hoping the training trips will help them lighten their load.... we'll have a couple full shakedowns in between during a troop meeting as well, so the entire troop will benefit.

I see Resqman's point about 18 being too many.... maybe I'll just work in a couple extra training trips along with having the monthly outing more geared toward trek preparedness...

the 14 year old age limit is because I do not want newly crossed over scouts to attend this trek. For the most part they'll be prone to home sickness and in general won't be as prepared. Of course, this is a guideline and if there is a scout that my SPL and I decide is ready and wants to go, and can pay for it, he'll be welcome.... the others will be in scout camp locally for that week....

 

someone mentioned the merit badges don't prove a thing that they're just checkmarks on a list... they do actually... commitment, and mommy and daddy cannot buy them a badge, they have to be earned... I'm thinking that perhaps just Orienteering and First Aid though.... This is not too much to ask of my current scouts to complete in 1.5 years... I dont' care if it's at camp this year or merit badge colleges, or on their own that they earn the badges... I want them to be committed to the trek with something other than having the money to attend... that's also why I want to make the training treks mandatory for both scouts and adults attending... can't make the training treks because you don't feel like it? can't go to yellowstone, sorry :-(

 

I'm in a very affluent town, and some (not all, but some) feel money is the answer to everything... part of our mission as Adult leaders is to teach these boys that hard work, commitment, and accountability will get you further in life than Mom and Dad paying your way.... and we have to be fair to those that cannot simply whip out the checkbook as easily as others...

 

fundraising is big on the list for the trek too... but won't come anywhere near covering 100%.... the parents have been told without fund raising it will be about $1000 out of pocket, but we're hoping to bring the cost down with fundraising, $100 due first meeting in January, $20 each month after that, with the balance due around March April 2015, before we leave when we finalize our airline tickets, etc.

 

In any case, keep the comments coming, I appreciate them all, if anyone has any thing else to add as to how their troop prepares for a high adventure trip that will be in the $1000 range per boy, I'm all ears! :-)

 

thank you all again! feedback truely is a gift, and I have some great thoughts to ponder and to work through with my PLC now! :-)

 

Mike B

fundraising was mentioned in a comment... but not intrinsic to the original question :-)

 

Troop size is 25 active boys. I have 9 crossing over in March that will be assimilated...

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wow, guys.... please dont' take this the wrong way you're all a great bunch of guys.. all feedback is a gift, and I appreciate it all, really.... but honestly, many replies to me about how my troop should be more boy led, I shouldn't be planning this the boys should, etc etc... that type of feedback doesn't help nor comes close to answering my question I posed.... some posts had some useful thoughts though and for those i thank you, Resqman hit the nail right on the head though, thank you very much ;-) I see your point about the 18 training trips, which really amounts to 9 additional treks as the other 9 would involve the entire troop and be the monthly outing.

 

all the boys in my troop have backpacking gear, although Im sure more gear/ better gear will want to be purchased, as that is one of our most looked forward to activities. they all know how to use their gear... but I see that many pack way too much, I'm hoping the training trips will help them lighten their load.... we'll have a couple full shakedowns in between during a troop meeting as well, so the entire troop will benefit.

I see Resqman's point about 18 being too many.... maybe I'll just work in a couple extra training trips along with having the monthly outing more geared toward trek preparedness...

the 14 year old age limit is because I do not want newly crossed over scouts to attend this trek. For the most part they'll be prone to home sickness and in general won't be as prepared. Of course, this is a guideline and if there is a scout that my SPL and I decide is ready and wants to go, and can pay for it, he'll be welcome.... the others will be in scout camp locally for that week....

 

someone mentioned the merit badges don't prove a thing that they're just checkmarks on a list... they do actually... commitment, and mommy and daddy cannot buy them a badge, they have to be earned... I'm thinking that perhaps just Orienteering and First Aid though.... This is not too much to ask of my current scouts to complete in 1.5 years... I dont' care if it's at camp this year or merit badge colleges, or on their own that they earn the badges... I want them to be committed to the trek with something other than having the money to attend... that's also why I want to make the training treks mandatory for both scouts and adults attending... can't make the training treks because you don't feel like it? can't go to yellowstone, sorry :-(

 

I'm in a very affluent town, and some (not all, but some) feel money is the answer to everything... part of our mission as Adult leaders is to teach these boys that hard work, commitment, and accountability will get you further in life than Mom and Dad paying your way.... and we have to be fair to those that cannot simply whip out the checkbook as easily as others...

 

fundraising is big on the list for the trek too... but won't come anywhere near covering 100%.... the parents have been told without fund raising it will be about $1000 out of pocket, but we're hoping to bring the cost down with fundraising, $100 due first meeting in January, $20 each month after that, with the balance due around March April 2015, before we leave when we finalize our airline tickets, etc.

 

In any case, keep the comments coming, I appreciate them all, if anyone has any thing else to add as to how their troop prepares for a high adventure trip that will be in the $1000 range per boy, I'm all ears! :-)

 

thank you all again! feedback truely is a gift, and I have some great thoughts to ponder and to work through with my PLC now! :-)

 

Mike B

:) Kinda reminds me of the 6 year old that approaches his father and says, "I want to go to Disney World." Dad says, "Great, here's a $2,000 check, have a great time!"

 

Are you providing a temporary activity to be enjoyed today or are there dynamics that can be capitalized upon so Dad can plan a trip so his boy can really go to Disney World? I'm sure the $2,000 check, and/or cash, isn't going to get any 6 year old to Disney World even if it's only 5 miles away. :)

 

Stosh

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also I'm thinking requirements such as:

 

14 years old

First Class or higher

physically able to hike 10 miles per day for 5 days

Orienteering badge

first aid badge

camping badge

wilderness survival badge

only able to miss 1 of the training trips (reasons for missing more than 1 will be considered)

Our troop did a trip out to Yellowstone many years back and stayed over at Camp Loll, which was a camp for one of the Idaho councils. Breathtaking camp at the bottom of about two miles of switchback roads (perfect for trailers!). Worked really well as a last stop base camp before we headed into the park.

 

That's a great idea to involve the whole troop, Stosh.

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