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  • Writer's pictureGreg Long

Summer Success at Camp Baker

The verdict is in — Summer Camp was a blast! Troop 12 Scouts arrived at Camp Baker fired up to tackle the unit’s first official summer camp program. Nineteen scouts and 7 adult leaders signed up for the week-long summer program located on Siltcoos Lake outside of Florence, Oregon.

“Summer Camp is the most important event of the year. It’s the one time all the Scouts get to spend a big chunk of time together, away from Mom and Dad, and really find what they’re capable of,” said Scoutmaster Mr. Long.

Counselors at Camp Baker provided new adventures for the scouts everyday, whether on the water, swimming and kayaking, or up in the air, climbing the rock wall or testing their skills on the COPE course challenge.

Each scout selected 7 programs of the more than 30 offered at the camp, including 3 Eagle Scout required merit badge programs— First Aid, Swimming, and Environmental Science.

Summer Camp is not boring lectures; it’s hands on learning. In addition to the more traditional camp activities, like rifle and archery, some challenging programs were also offered. Wilderness Survival had Troop 12 Scouts canoeing to a small deserted island and building a shelter to survive a night in the wild relying on their newly acquired skills.

“One thing I remember is the urgency and the pressure I felt to build my shelter and get warm before it got dark,” noted First Class Scout Charlie Westover.

Keep in mind, the scouts arrived at the island with only the clothes they were wearing - no sleeping bag, tent or pad.

“It did not feel cold until I was trying to go to sleep and then it was miserable. One method I used was putting layers of ferns and grass on the area where I was sleeping to elevate my body from the ground. Besides that, I bundled up and hunkered down for a long cold night,” added Westover.

Fortunately, it was a mild evening with no rain; however, the temperature dipped into the 50’s.

After the conclusion of camp, 19 scouts. earned 90 merit badges.

Tenderfoot Scout, Chris Diaz, showing off Pathfinder Patrol's Doodit Pole Stripes.

Scoutmaster Long reflected, “I’m sure there will be many more Summer Camps in Troop 12’s future, but this one was our first real summer camp as a troop. This was something special. It’s definitely one for the history books.”

Where is Troop 12 going to Summer Camp next year? Word on the trail is they’re heading to the Cascades to Camp Malakwa for a rugged Scouting adventure.

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