Wilderness Survival Campout

If you didn't know, I'm the Assistant Scout Master for the Boy Scout troop that meets at my church. On January 1st through the 3rd we had a "Wilderness Survival Campout" at Fritsche Cemetery Park.   [ Park Map & Boundaries] (PDF)

We arrived at the park around 5pm on New Year's Day. We cooked hot dogs over the fire, set up our tents then hit the sack. The next morning the boys started working towards the Wilderness Survival merit badge. They relinquished their all of their supplies, save a small survival kit they had prepared. We provided a limited ration of food for the boys that day. For breakfast they had an apple and an orange.

Hike in the woods We took a wilderness hike to get them in the "survival mode", then for the next few hours the boys learned survival techniques from the adults. We prepared classes on fire starting, first aid, building a natural shelter, and water purification. After that we provided lunch which consisted of a few raw potatoes. Some of the boys cooked their potatoes in the coals of the fire, others on sticks. We were generous enough to provide salt, pepper and butter to liven up their meals.

We broke for a game of football some time during the afternoon which was fun. It sapped the boys of all of their energy and it reminded us adults just how out of shape we are. My quarterback skills have diminished significantly. I think I threw 3 interceptions that game.

Some time around 5pm John returned with 7 live chickens. Kelton instructed the boys on how to kill and prepare them. I'm guessing that his was the only chicken that didn't suffer a long, agonizing death. The boys tried their best to chop the heads off cleanly, but unfortunately, most of them, including me, had to take more than one swing to finish the birds off.

After several hours of cooking finally the birds were done and we could eat. Luckily no one came down with salmonella poisoning or anything of the sort. We adults stayed up that night talking and playing with the fire till about 1am. That night the boys slept in the shelters they had prepared that day. They must have been pretty uncomfortable because from 3am till around 5am they were awake, gathered around the fire making all kinds of noise.

To say the least I woke up grumpy that morning, but over all I had a great time. We have some awesome leaders in the troop as well as some great kids. I can't wait till our next campout!

Click the link below for more pictures.

Around the fire.

Wilderness Hike.

Chickens Dinner.

David's Survival Shelter!!

Kelton teaching how to kill a chicken.

Our rotisserie.

The Gang.

If this still isn't enough, click here to view the video I made.

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This page contains a single entry by Will published on January 5, 2004 10:23 AM.

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