Monthly Archives: August 2013

Marin Sierra Summer Camp, August 2013

This year for the first time, the troop split into two summer camps. The older scouts went to Philmont for a high-adventure trek (see that post) and the younger scouts went to Camp Marin Sierra for more traditional summer camping. Marin Sierra is in the Sierras above Tahoe, and the farthest camp we’ve done (almost 500 miles away!). The camp had great reviews from other local troops and the boys were not disappointed. We had a great turnout of 16 scouts and 6 adults. Scouts earned loads of exciting merit badges, enjoyed swimming and boating in Chubb Lake, and even enjoyed some unusually tasty camp food. Everyone loved this camp, so perhaps we’ll go back again one summer.

Lots of great pictures will be posted soon!

Philmont Scout Ranch, August 2013

Troop 147 successfully tackled BSA’s Philmont Scout Ranch this August as part of two separate crews. What an adventure in the New Mexico mountains for our scouts! Many days were spent backpacking up and down mountains (from base camp at 6,700′ to mountains over 11,000′ high) loaded with full packs, adding up to over 70 challenging miles. Scouts (and leaders) persevered through powerful lightning storms, windstorms, hailstorms, and rainstorms, plus the occasional hot and sunny day. We were stalked by a mountain lion in camp one evening, and saw lots of other interesting wildlife from rattlesnakes to turkeys to deer to various lizards. The afternoons and evenings were crammed with activities such as horseback riding, burro racing, shooting rifles, throwing atlatls, forging iron, touring gold mines, and learning about the rich paleontology, archaeology, and more recent history of the area. Wow, we got to see the world’s only Tyrannosaurus rex footprints, right where they were made 65 million years ago! Even the train ride to New Mexico on the Southwest Chief was fun for all – we even observed “the deer and the antelope play” on the range.

Philmont requires months of physical, mental, and equipment preparation, and is not something the troop will do every year. However, we will certainly go back when a new crop of scouts is strong enough to attempt this major wilderness adventure. See the photos for a small taste of this amazing place.

Santa Cruz Island kayaking, July 2013

Wow! We had a great turnout for a high-adventure weekend in the Channel Islands National Park. Scouts and several moms, dads, and siblings kayaked all day on Saturday through some amazing sea caves on Santa Cruz Island. We saw an amazing variety of marine life from coelenterates and echinoderms up to pinnipeds and cetaceans. We had plenty of time to snorkel and swim, too. And no scout outing would be complete without a hike – this time we hiked along the cliffs and had great views toward the mainland. The ferry trips over and back on a small ship were also a highlight – especially the rough swells coming home. Even the land creatures were fun to watch, such as the endangered Channel Islands fox, and the particularly ravenous ravens who attacked our watermelon when we turned our back on them. Combine the beautiful campsite with the great activities, and this is an adventure we’ll have to do again in the future.