Day 1: Longest in-processing ever! The staff checked every date, block and annotation on every form. With 71 folks that took a while. But the boys were very patient and we got thru it. Scorpio was our Troop Guide which at least made the process personable. We still had 3 hours of free time to get the camp set up and explore a bit (Dylan had an extensive planning session with the leaders to get the Troop set up for the week.) Opening campfire had good introductions of each program area and some nice fireworks. At Add/Drop we got almost everything we wanted.
Day 2: The boys were awesome today. Despite a heat index of over 100, they were in good spirits. The Merit Badge classes began and the first requirement of each one are the safety considerations (so lots of required but unstimulating lecture). This afternoon the boys were everywhere. Some went swimming or repelling or started handicraft MBs, others just chilled out (kind of). We had our first assigned shower house cleaning late afternoon before dinner. For the first time in my 15 years at camp we were in class B T-shirts for dinner formations due to the heat. We canceled cobbler for tonight, it’s just too hot to make it in a Dutch oven with charcoal. Sending the boys to open swim instead.
Day 3: Another hot one, but the dew point was lower so it wasn’t so oppressive.
Turns out most of the boys decided to do Scottish highland games last night rather than swim. Today the evening program was Ice Cream for Order of the Arrow members then the spoof MB for all. This morning the merit badges continued and the boys are making good progress. Lots of activities this afternoon. All but one of our fishermen has caught a fish. We had a mountain bike trip for several boys. Many baskets got made. We finished the first aid MB. Repelling and geocaching were big draws today as well. It was hard to go anywhere without seeing a purple shirt. Spirits are high and the boys are doing well.
Day 4: Merit Badges continued despite the heat. We got a bit of relief late afternoon with a light sprinkle and finally some coolness this evening. Several boys are completing ancillary activities and earning fun patches in the afternoon. All badges are over half complete. We had a Troop boating activity and flag retirement this evening and celebrated Kevin passing his swim test. The boys are really excited about the horseback riding and white-water raft trips on Thursday – 61 boys and adults are in for a treat.
Day 5: The day started early with the polar bear plunge. About a dozen folks went for a swim at 0600. Then on to Merit Badges this morning where the boys are well on track and almost done. Load out for the off-camp trips was an absolute zoo. We had 3 to 6 adults on each trip and they managed to heard their gaggles onto the buses. Camp Rainey Mountains raft trips on the Nantahala River left late so our 32 folks on the Nantahala trip had to wait two hours for their rafts but it all worked out. Everyone had fun! The adults enjoyed an excellent steak dinner afterwards as a thank you from the camp. Dylan led a water diversion service project to help the Troop earn an award streamer. The boys worked hard and cheerfully for the camp Ranger who was impressed with the result. I completed the business portion of our checkout this afternoon and signed us up for Woodruff Scout Camp 11-17 June 2023. Please plan your schedules so our Scouts can attend summer camp again next year.
Day 6: Dylan made a mad dash to finish the final requirements, but he got the Troop across the finish line for Honor Troop and Scouting Traditions Awards. Step finished his mile swim. We had a strong rain this afternoon that cooled things down and the campfire tonight. The programs are finished and I’m heading to get the paperwork. See you at the school tomorrow.
Full Photo Album: https://photos.app.goo.gl/TT9N3Wydsz4ng4xu8