The troop is working on the Wilderness Survival merit badge. The "class" part of the requirements were completed at the Monday night meetings. If you missed one of the meetings, the class notes for completing the merit badge worksheet are available. For the outdoor (fun) part of the merit badge, we are meeting out where Tuskegee Drive turns into a gravel road (just past the disk golf course) at noon on Saturday, April 26th. There were 15 scouts and 2 leaders on this campout. We hiked up to the top of the ridge and camped on Dr. Clarke's property (with his permission). This exercise simulated getting lost in the woods so scouts showed up dressed and packed for a day hike. On the way up the side of the ridge, we stopped let each scout practice signaling with a mirror. Once we reached the top the scouts built their emergency shelters for the night and then worked on starting fires using three different methods other than matches or a lighter. Flint and steel, magnesium strikers, steel wool and a battery, Fresnel lenses, and a parabolic mirror were all used successfully. Even though we brought an extra gallon of water, we were running low by late afternoon, so a group of scouts took the water filter and found a small creek to filter water. Around 7:00 we built a campfire and cooked hot dogs over the fire (they were good). On Sunday morning we got up, had breakfast, tore down the shelters and hiked back down to the road. We got back to where the scouts were to be picked up right at 8:00AM.
A map showing where we setup camp.
Here we are at the start of the gravel road on Saturday getting ready to head out."
Setting up our emergency shelters. I slept in my tent (on my air mattress) but Ben built a delux shelter.
Scouts working on their fire starting skills.
Here we are around the campfire on Saturday evening.
During the night, some of the older scouts turned savage like in "Lord of the Flies".
Early Sunday morning.
Here we are on Sunday morning warning up and having some breakfast.
Everyone survived. Back at the road waiting to be picked up.