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Philmont Trek Questions

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I surveyed our crew by having them look at the list of activities and mark the ones that interest them.  Compiling the favorites will help them sit down choose their treks.  I think this bunch needs to be in the lower mileage treks, unfortunately, based on our hikes.

The activities most popular with our crew are Blacksmithing, Tomahawk Throwing, Shotgun, Cowboy Action Shooting, Horse Rides, Chuckwagon and Archery.  There are others that multiple people chose. Any thoughts on these based on your experiences?  Did your crews like them or were they disappointed?  Any activities that were more fun than the crew expected?

I had one person tell me that there are camps with cabins, but I only see cabin tours. I was not expecting there to be any nights in a cabin. Is that correct?

For these low mileage treks, is there too much down time?

So far, it's looking like some of the treks most compatible with the scout survey have no dry camps. That would be nice.  One has a Baldy Mountain hike.


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A few "pearls" from my treks:

* The chuckwagon dinner is a great change from freeze dried but dont expect too much.  The two times Ive had it, it is commercial-size (boil in the bag) dinty moore beef stew and dutch over cobbler.  As I said, a nice change of pace but it is really easy to over eat and get sick (dont ask how I know).

* We did cowboy action shooting the first year it was offered so things may have changed since then.  We used 22cal revolvers loaded a single shot at a time.  It was fun because it was pistols but it was really pretty "meh" if you have done much shooting.

* They never seemed to get tired of tomahawks.  

* Burro packing is an interesting experience.  Both times we had a youth who has horses so he knew how to get the animal moving.  I have read stories of people who were not so fortunate.

* I am not aware of any cabins available to sleep in.  Yes there are some to tour, we like Hunting Lodge.  There is one place where you sleep in a lean-to type shelter on a platform on the side of the hill.  Dont recall the camp but it is in the SW part of the ranch.

* Our guys really liked the sweat lodge and the burro racing

* It was so-so for the guys but the adults all really enjoyed the re-dedication to Scouting program (and the cabin) at Zastrow camp

* Dry camps are not bad, you just have to plan ahead a bit.  YOu've probably heard about eating dinner for lunch that day.

* How much down time you have is very dependent on how organized and efficient the crew is.  If they take 2 hours to get out of camp in the morning and have a long hike they are likely to miss program at the next camp.  If you know they are slow to get on the trail and/or slow to hike, you may want to encourage low miles so they dont miss activities.

* If you do Baldy, I suggest having it later in the trek so you have your "trail legs" under you.  I have only done it on a layover day - just enough packs for essentials and to pick up food on the way back down.  

Hope that helps....


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The chuckwagon pancake breakfast sounds better.

I've been told by a couple of scouters that the burros were horrible to deal with on their treks. I told our crew no burros.  I'm not going to deal with them.  That was the only restriction I gave them.

All of that helps very much!  Thank you!

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