Eagle Scout!!

The path to Eagle Scout comes in many shapes and sizes.  No two scouts share the same path.  The basics are the same, the requirements are the same but the actual journey is the decision of the individual scout.

We could not be more proud to announce Trevor Nigus as the newest Eagle Scout of Crew 91.  We are incredibly proud of you, Trevor, and all you have accomplished.  Congratulations!

Eagle Scout - Crew 91

 

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Hike On {Part 1}

When you spend 11 days hiking in the back country of Philmont Scout Ranch it is hard to squeeze everything into only one post!  So much happened we’ll need to share over a few days.  Hold onto your hats, we did a lot of hiking.

Venture Crew 91

Our grand adventure started off with a bit of excitement.  Crew 711-G was the honored recipient as the designated 1 millionth crew of the day when we arrived on Friday, July 11.  Our fearless Crew Leader, Trevor, was presented with a folding sheathed, engraved knife to commemorate this being the summer of the 1,000,000 scout to attend Philmont Scout Ranch.  We were quite shocked and honored.

Venture Crew 91

Mr. Sam Moore was introduced to us as our Ranger and we hit the ground running.  It did not seem possible for over a year of planning to finally be upon us and we were taking everything in with wide eyes.  From the dining hall lined with crew Class Bs to the opening ceremony to the gathering of our crew gear we were as ready as we could be.

Venture Crew 91

Saturday afternoon brought us to a Leave No Trace campsite where Sam filled us in on all the important stuff we needed to know.  Like how to put up bear bags, the importance of the Bermuda Triangle and the Human Sump.   Thanks Tanner for  sacrificing your gut on our first night! For some unknown reason girls always catch the blame for talking late into the night.  Not so on this first night in the back country.  Tanner, Ross, Trevor and Jared could not stop talking…they were not quiet folks!

Venture Crew 91

Campos Heck

Venture Crew 91

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A Typical Wednesday

We were pretty busy last night checking on our tent situation for Philmont Scout Ranch.  We leave for Philmont in 14 days!  If we want to be comfortable we better be sure to have all our tents and gear ready to go.

Venture Crew 91 Tenting

As people drove by the yard full of tents we’re sure they were thinking we were crazy.  Though there were only four tents set up in the yard it definitely is a different sight for Chillicothe in the middle of the week.  We’re really too excited to care what the general passerby is thinking. 🙂

 

Thankfully each tent will be keeping us dry and we even found a tent we forgot we had!  That’s the problem with camping gear…it gets out of control!  We decided to leave the tents assembled for our gear shakedown this Saturday and save us some steps.  So we won’t kill the grass we’ve stuffed them all into a garage.  Poor garage.

Venture Crew 91 Tenting

Who really puts cars in their garages anyway?  Isn’t it supposed to be filled to the brim with tents, sleeping pads, backpacks and backpacking stoves?

Venture Crew 91 Tenting

 

Sizzling Hot!

A small merry band of Philmont enthusiasts went for a hike last night.  We sure were hoping for fine weather and got quite the opposite.  The late afternoon rain was sure to bring a cooling of the 90+ temps Central Illinois was experiencing.  We were COMPLETELY wrong!

By the time we arrived at Robinson Park the heat was oppressive and the humidity was through the roof.  We only had to walk a short way before we found ourselves drenched in a salty, sticky sweat.  Carrying an additional 30-40lbs didn’t help us stay cool either.

The only perks of this lovely stroll were all the wildlife we were able to see.  No, we are not counting the gnats and mosquitoes that plagued us for the two hours!  We’re referring to all the deer who were out and about last night.  We practically ran into a handful as they stood in the trails.  In total we observed at least 11 deer at Robinson Park.  It was wonderful.

Scouting All Summer

When asked, ‘What are you plans for the summer?’ being a Venture Scout has its advantages.  Summers are awesome and hold the keys to the great unknown, if you know where to look.  One member of our crazy crew will have plenty of stories to tell from the summer of 2014.

Trevor is a Life Scout of Crew 91 and the Senior Patrol Leader of Troop 50.  He has packed his summer to the brim.  Starting off the summer with a bang by participating in National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT), moving into three weeks working at Camp Ingersoll and then catching the train to Philmont Scout Ranch for two weeks makes for one massive summer of scouting!

Mr. Trevor

For the fourth summer in the W.D. Boyce Council, NYLT has been opened to Venture Scouts.  Trevor is the second member of Crew 91 to participate in NYLT and we’re so excited to see what leadership ideas he brings back to the crew.  National Youth Leadership Training is youth-led by previous graduates of NYLT and seeks to integrate modern leadership theory with the strengths scouting has to offer.  Every participant will discover what a leader must BE, what a leader must KNOW, and what a leader must DO.

National Youth Leadership Training

The next three weeks will be exhausting and amazing all at the same time.  Trevor will be working as a ‘floater’ at Ingersoll Scout Reservation in London Mills, Illinois.  Camp Ingersoll is our council summer camp offering Boy Scout troops an incredible summer full of activities, rank advancements and the opportunities to complete Merit Badges.  Mr. Trevor will be floating around camp serving wherever duty calls.  He’ll be busy at the waterfront, in Scoutcraft and a handful of other outposts leading by example and learning what it means to serve others before self.

Ingersoll Scout Reservation

After trekking all over Ingersoll Trevor will be throwing together everything he needs for a two week adventure at the epic Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico.  While at Philmont Trevor will serve as the trek Crew Leader while the group backpacks for 12 days through the mountains of New Mexico.  While there he will be able to put to practice the skills he learned at NYLT and the servant leadership he observed while on staff at Camp Ingersoll.

Philmont Scout Ranch

These are the best summers.  The summers that start off by learning new skills that move into serving others and then progress to leading a group of venturers through the backcountry make the most memorable of summers.  If anything, Trevor will be ready to take a real shower, crash into his own bed and share with others why scouting is really the best option for a jam packed, unforgettable summer.

 

30 Days and Counting

Woot woot!  It is hard to believe in exactly 30 days we will be hitting the trails of Philmont Scout Ranch.  Who knew over a year of planning would go by so quickly.  It seems hard to believe we are finally in the last stages of preparing for Philmont.

Just keep hiking

Just keep hiking

Our prep hiking has been kicked up a notch and living rooms and garages are becoming sorting grounds full of equipment.  With Philmont just 30 days away we’ve picked up the hiking pace to 2-3 times a week.  Everyone’s doing great and the enthusiasm is building.

the fearless ladies

the fearless ladies

The merry band of nine is full of newbies and a smattering of veterans.  With five of the six youth experiencing the backcountry of New Mexico for the first time it is sure to be a delight. There is really nothing better than conquering the initial climb of the trek, setting up camp, purifying water and throwing your first bear bag line.  It will be a trip of firsts and we could not be more excited.

On our Way

On our Way

Keep an eye out for more details of our trek and we’ll be sure to keep you posted as we travel by train from Central Illinois to the beautiful Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

All Aboard!

Amazing, “The year has quickly gone by and we’re finally at Philmont Scout Ranch!”  That is what we’ll be saying in exactly three months.  On July 11, 2014 we will have arrived in Raton, New Mexico, jumped on buses full of Scouts and Venturers from all over the country and made our way to Philmont Scout Ranch.

Just 4 months!

Just 3 months!

It does not really seem possible all our hard work and preparations will be coming to life in only three months.  We will have left on Wednesday, July 10 from the Galesburg Amtrak station, said goodbye to all our family and started on a once in a lifetime adventure.  The train will take us all the way to New Mexico and after hours of card games, sleeping and riding a train for 18 hours we will have made new scouting friends.

Backpacks are too big for these!

Backpacks are too big for these!

 

The niftiest part of taking a train to Philmont is how full the train is with Scouts and Venturers following an 18 hour train trip.  When we catch the train in Galesburg we’ll probably be the only Venturers on the train.  By the time we’ve been on the rails for 10 hours the train will be filling up with boots, packs and water bottles.  Scouts and Veturers will swap stories, forge friendships and share past Philmont stories.  Then after 18 hours of a swaying train rolling through the mountains and prairies the train will be bursting with anxious scouters.

Sayonara, Mom and Dad!

Sayonara, Mom and Dad!

 

We have a lot of prepping yet to do but we are excited.  There are miles to hike and hills to conquer before we’re ready for the mountainous terrain of New Mexico.  But hiking on a weekly basis and setting up practice weekend trips will help us be prepared for anything.

 

The countdown has begun and the adventure awaits!

Just Three Months

Just Three Months