Sunday, January 23, 2011

Into the Klondike

Into the Klondike

An annual winter event for many, if not most, Boy Scouting districts is the Klondike Derby.  Troops compete in demonstrations of various Scouting skills, including one that really isn't part of most troops' normal activities:  dragging a sled around with their gear on it.

It helps to have at least a few inches of snow for a Klondike Derby.  I remember one a few years ago when the boys were literally dragging their sleds over dried grass at Camp Smith in Cortland, N.Y.--and had to be extra cautious about fire-starting.

Not a problem yesterday at Camp Alpine (along the New Jersey Palisades).  We even had had another snowstorm since my previous post.  The daytime temperature, moreover, was at the lowest it's been so far this winter, approximately 15 degrees F.  OK, that's not really a Klondike winter temperature, but close enuf for our purposes.

Here are some photos:

A partial view of Scouts at their various activities

Troop 2 from Bronxville had the most colorful sled.  This troop, by the way, is the "Presidential Troop"; John F. Kennedy belonged to it from 1929 to 1931, when his family lived in Bronxville (1928-1942).

The Scouts rig emergency shelters with ropes, tarps, and pegs

They show that they can build a fire--more easily no doubt, under the circumstances, than the unfortunate traveler in Jack London's famous story

They practice their lashing skills

Closely monitored, a couple of Scouts learn how to use a two-man saw

Don't ask me what they Scouts are doing here, other than crawling together up the blue tarps.

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