A crew of teenage Scouts (14 and 15 yrs olds) and their leaders went on a life changing summer trek through the Sangre de Cristo Mountains at Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico. Philmont covers 214 square miles of vast wilderness with trails that climb from 6,500 feet to as high as 12,441 feet. During the trek Boy Scout Troop 212 from Fayetteville hiked 70 miles over 10 days. The photo was taken at Mt. Phillips at 11,711 feet. Troop 212 meets at Christ Church at Whitewater on Tuesday evenings at 7 p.m.
The group of Scouts/leaders carried everything they needed to survive during the trek on their backs while hiking from camp to camp. Each day they hiked 7-9 miles. They participated in backcountry programs along the way including rock climbing, black powder riffle shooting, fly-fishing and spar pole climbing and much more. The trek included a conservation project where the Scouts learned and participated in the upkeep of the Philmont’s ecosystem. They help build a path that is now part of the Philmont trails. Along the trek, Scouts endured tough challenges including backpacking in bear and mountain lion territory, steep climbs, and often-inclement weather with temperatures ranging from 40 degrees to 90 degrees.
The crew made what amounts to a Scouting pilgrimage with their trip to Philmont. Philmont Scout Ranch is he Boys Scouts of America’s premier high adventure camp and the largest youth camp in the world serving nearly one million participants since 1938.