Backpacking on the Horseshoe Trail and Camping at Warwick County Park


Who says Scouts don't go backpacking or camping in November?  Let's do both, on Saturday and Sunday Nov 9 & 10!  This is the first backpacking prep trip for Philmont and it counts for 50 points towards the 300 points required (DETAILS).

We'll begin backpacking at Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site (next to French Creek State Park) and hike through the cool town of St. Peters (which has an Arcade of antique games; check them out HERE and bring some spending money!).  We'll end up at Warwick County Park, where the campers will already have arrived.  See pictures from this trip HERE.

You should only backpack if you have the appropriate gear (as we've been discussing at Troop Meetings).  If you're not sure, please discuss with a Scout leader on Friday.  You should also come to the shakedown meeting on Friday 8th November.
Backpackers meet at St. John's at 7:45AM on Saturday November 9th
  • Arrive hiking start point at 9:00 (Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site - upper parking lot; directions below)
  • Hike about 7.5 miles on the Horseshoe Trail (HSTRAIL) with stops on the way (notably, the River of Rocks and village of SAINT_PETERS; it's FUN!)
  • Arrive at campsite in the afternoon (Warwick County Park, off Route 23, Knauertown, PA)
  • Sunday backpack out 2.5 miles and pick up at French Creek Elementary School
Return to St. John's at Noon on Sunday November 10th

pickup Sunday at 10:45AM at Warwick County Park.  The park is about 50 minutes away from Blue Bell.  Directions here: SATURDAY_DIRECTIONS    SUNDAY_DIRECTIONS.

If you need to borrow a backpack let us know on the RSVP form or email the Scoutmaster

Planning and Packing:
  1. Wear hiking boots or solid athletic shoes.  Wear two pairs of socks, ideally thin polypropylene (wicking) socks or cotton socks against your foot, and a pair of thicker socks (ideally wool or wool blend) outside of them.  This reduces the likelihood of blisters.
  2. You must carefully plan what you are carrying.  MINIMIZE WEIGHT
  3. Pack your smellables separately in something you can easily take out and put in the bear bag.
  4. Don't forget eating gear (but not an entire mess kit).  MINIMIZE WEIGHT
  5. Take time to attach things to your pack (such as your sleeping bag or a tent) with compression straps or rope.
  6. You should bring your fully packed backpack to the Troop meeting on Friday November 8th for a "shakedown" where an experienced backpacker Scout checks you out.
  7. You should drink a lot of water before leaving and you must carry at least one quart of water (in a durable water bottle).
What to do on Saturday morning:
  1. Check the weather forecast and make sure you're prepared.
  2. Eat breakfast.  Drink a lot of water.
  3. Bring a bag lunch.  MINIMIZE WEIGHT
  4. Make/bring your own trail mix. 
  5. Bring a few dollars for the shops at St. Peters.
  6. Put on sunscreen and bring a ballcap or visor.
Crew Gear (discuss with your Patrol Leader/Crew Leader at the Troop Meeting):
  1. Tents/shelter
  2. Crew food (Sat dinner; Sun breakfast)
  3. Cooking/food prep/serving gear
  4. Cleaning gear
  5. Bear bag and rope
  6. First Aid kit
  7. Insect repellent
  8. Compass (2)
    No need for water purification gear
    No need for firestarting materials
Campers meet at St. John's at 8:45AM on Saturday November 9th
  • Arrive at campsite at Warwick County Park (off Route 23, Knauertown, PA) about 10:00AM.  
  • Set up camp (work on campout advancement if you need it).  
  • Hike about 2.0 miles on the Horseshoe Trail to the River of Rocks and village of SAINT_PETERS; it's FUN!
Return to St. John's at Noon on Sunday November 10th

pickup Sunday at 10:45AM at Warwick County Park.  The park is about 50 minutes away from Blue Bell.  Directions to campsite here: 

Planning and Packing:
  1. Cooking and tenting by patrol.  We'll discuss this at the Troop Meeting.
  2. There is a pavilion at Warwick Park with picnic tables and a fireplace.  We're not sure if we'll be allowed to have fires, though.
Patrol Gear (discuss with your Patrol Leader or Troop Guide)