Troop 98 Goes to Philmont

Troop 98 Scouts are leaving on Saturday for a 2-week backpacking expedition to the Philmont Scout Ranch in northern New Mexico. Here's what they’ll be doing;

They need to be at the Philadelphia airport by 7:30 on Saturday morning. The group consists of 3 crews, including a total of 28 Scouts and 7 adult "advisors". They’ll be quite a sight at the airport in their class-A uniforms.

Their flight makes one stop, but none of the scouts will de-plane. They arrive in Albuquerque on Saturday around dinnertime and an all-you-can eat buffet. On Sunday, they have a free day, which will be spent touring the area and getting used to the higher altitude. There is a tour outfitter, Blue Sky Adventures, that caters to scouts. Here’s what they’ll be doing on Sat/Sun:

Beginning Monday, they report to Philmont for a mandatory gear “shakedown” with the rangers. Then they begin one of these itineraries:

Crew 1: Trek 5

Crew 2: Trek 18

Crew 3: Trek 11

Here are maps of their treks, including a chart of the mileage they hike each day and the elevation changes:

Map 5       Map 18       Map 11

With the exception of cameras, the boys are not allowed to take any electronics—even on the plane. While backpacking, they need to carry all their gear, food, emergency equipment and, sometimes, even a day's worth of water.  They need to follow procedures to keep themselves safe from bears and mountain lions.  Some of them are a bit nervous, but a lot excited. Wish ‘em luck!