On Friday, August 2nd, seventeen scouts and leaders from Troop 170 left for Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico. After andirect flight to Denver, the scouts travelled by bus to the Koshare Indian Museum in La Junta, Colorado. The scouts would sleep for two nights in a 60-foot diameter round building with a log roof consisting of 600 20-foot logs supported only by the outside wall. The Kiva, built in 1949, is a replica of an authentic Pueblo Kiva. Built under the inspired leadership of James “Buck” Burshears, the Kiva serves as the home of Boy Scout Troop 223 and Venture Crew 2230. It houses a collection of Native American art and artifacts considered to be among the finest in the world. The Kiva itselves provides the center stage for the world famous Koshare Indian Dancers. For more information visit www.kosharehistory.org
On Saturday, we drove just out of town to visit Bent's Fort National Historic Site. We witnessed the arrival of the Army of the West including Missouri Volunteers and US Army Cavalry in period costuming. Accompanying the group was the great-great grandson of Kit Carson, who participated in the reenactment of the events that took place at the fort in 1846. Bent's Fort was built by Charles Bent on the banks of the Arkansas river, serving as a privately owned trading post on the Santa Fe Trail. The fort served as a staging area in the summer of 1846 as Colonel Stephen Watts Kearny led the “Army of the West,” down the Santa Fe Trail to invade northern Mexico.. The scouts learned a lot and participated fully in the activities inside the fort. Trevor Maldanado was pressed into service to help the blacksmith fix some iron tent pegs. Trevor operated the bellows and was soon made an apprentice. He became obligated to serve for six years with the promise of hard work under hard conditions, two meals a day whether he needed them or not, they promised to bleed him twice a year to keep him in good health, and promised him lodging within the walls of the fort. Trevor was told that if he left the fort before his six year apprenticeship was over that they would out a bounty on him and have men sent out to find him.
We spent the afternoon at the town pool. An amazing facility for a high-plains Colorado town comprising 2.9 square miles with a population of 7,089; and, a median family income of $36,398! While swimming, we listened to Bretheren Flow perform across the street as part of “Music at the Junction.”
On Sunday morning, we drove to Philmont Scout Ranch, arriving at 10:30 AM. We met our rangers and spent the rest of the day getting prepared to hit the trail on Monday morning. There are a lot of things to do upon arrival day: medical recheck, outfitting of crew gear and food, backcountry training, a review of itinerary and water conditions with Logistics, stowing gear not going on the trail, religious services; and, an opening campfire telling the New Mexico story.
Up until three weeks ago, Philmont and the surrounding countryside was brown and gray due to a multi-year drought. Since then, they have been receiving rain on a regular basis and everything is green. Truly spring conditions. Likely seeing lots of wildflowers in the backcountry. The deer and antelope are happy! On Monday, August 5th, the crews left base camp to begin their backcountry treks in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.
Born in 1938 as Philturn Rockymountain Scoutcamp, today's Philmont Scout Ranch is a bustling center for high adventure and training. Youth and adults take advantage of the Ranch's camping, training and work programs. Most activity takes place during the summer, but Philmont also offers Autumn Adventure and Winter Adventure programs.
More than 950,000 Scouts, Venturers, and leaders have experienced the adventure of Philmont since the first camping season in 1939. Throughout its existence, conscientious attention to low-impact camping techniques has helped maintain the Ranch's wilderness.
The area surrounding the Ranch is rich with history, from the Native Americans who made this arid land their home to the land barons of the 19th century. To learn more about Philmont Scout Ranch, please visit www.philmontscoutranch.org
A brisk morning in the backcountry today! It was 40 degrees in basecamp at 7AM this morning. Today is the fifth day of the scout’s twelve day backpacking trek.
Boy Scout Troop 170 is sponsored by the First Church of Christ Unionville. It provides year round, age appropriate experiences for young men ages 10 to 17. For 50 years, the troop has offered program that has served to enhance character, to promote self-discovery, and to challenge our Scouts to cultivate self-reliance, leadership, fitness, compassion, and a sense of service to God and country through exceptional educational experiences. For more information about Troop 170 contact the scoutmaster at email@example.com