A crew of local teenage Boy Scouts and their leaders recently went on a life changing summer trek through the Sangre de Cristo Mountains at Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico. Philmont covers 214 sq. miles of vast wilderness with trails that climb from 6,500 ft. to as high as 12,441 ft. During the late-July trek, 10 youth and adult members of Boy Scout Troop 632 hiked 98-1/2 miles over 11 days.
The group of Scouts and their advisors carried everything they needed to survive during the trek on their backs while hiking from camp to camp. They participated in backcountry programs along the way including black powder and .30-06 rifle shooting, archery, fly-fishing, bouldering, tomahawk throwing and horseback riding. The trek included a conservation project where the Scouts learned and participated in the upkeep of Philmont’s ecosystem.
“This was a tremendous experience, and it was great to watch this incredible group of young men work together to conquer rugged terrain, some rough weather, and numerous challenges along the way. For any Boy Scout, past or present, Philmont Scout Ranch is a bucket list item. I am humbled to have been a part of this crew,” noted the Lead Adult Advisor Ken Haxton.
The Scouts endured tough challenges including backpacking in bear and mountain lion territory, steep climbs, and often-inclement weather.
“They may meet only one other group of Scouts on the trail in an entire day of hiking,” according to Backpacker Magazine. “Even in the most crowded destinations, each Scout group camps in isolation, out of sight and sound of all other groups.” The crew made what amounts to a Scouting pilgrimage with their trip to Philmont.
James Allinder, who is the Trek Crew Leader said, “Our whole crew enjoyed the trip. We had the opportunity to do things that many people would never dream of doing. Hiking the Rocky Mountains with a great group of friends is something I will never forget.”
The Scout Ranch is the Boy Scouts of America’s premier high adventure camp and the largest youth camp in the world serving nearly one million participants since 1938.
Boy Scout Troop 632 meets Monday evenings at Fishhawk Fellowship Church. If you are interested in an active local Boy Scout Troop, please contact Michael “Doc” Hodges at firstname.lastname@example.org.