Regular readers may remember me whining about a cancelled camp-out. It finally got rescheduled and I took a rare Saturday off to get the new boys off to a good start. We had a combination of orienteering (using your compass to find stuff), problem-solving, team-work, and physical challenges. The weather was absolutely perfect.
Then they had to go over the top. It became a little more challenging at that point. Most of the boys remembered this as one of the more difficult challenges, as they had to get their entire patrol over — not just the little athletes, but the big, the small, the short and tall, the slow and the fast — everybody.
Making a stretcher with a tarp and two poles is very simple, but only if you remember how. The older Scout accompanying these new boys had sort of forgotten how to do it. Hence this mess that resembles a bathtub while they drag their hapless victim across the forest floor.
The challenges weren’t all physical. The goal was to get these guys to think about the problem, talk it over, listen to each other and make a plan that would work the first time.
Retrieving the bucket from the "ruin" without entering it was just such a problem. I wish I could tell you that this successful attempt was "plan A". Of course, it sort of was their first plan, since their earlier attempts didn’t actually have a plan to speak of.
Getting everyone throught the spider’s web requires a lot of planning and cooperation, plus a little physical exertion. There’s always a lot of talking on this event… not so much listening, but a lot of talking.
They finished the day with a little zip-line ride, and they all seemed pretty fired up about Scouting by the time we sat down for a bowl of chili and some jokes around the campfire. This time, all the Scouts were cheerful… even me.