Summer’s just around the corner. Make plans for fun with our guide to eight amazing Scout camps.
DIVE IN: There are waterfronts — and then there’s the waterfront at Camp Morrison, located high in the Rocky Mountains. The clear glacial waters of Payette Lake offer the ultimate swimming, sailing and snorkeling experience.
LOOK AROUND: As you walk to merit badge class, keep your eyes open for deer, foxes and eagles. You might spot a black bear, too, which is a good reminder to keep food out of your tent.
CLIMB ON: Here, you don’t get the Climbing merit badge; you earn it. Instead of climbing an artificial wall, challenge yourself on natural rock. Learn advanced techniques and how to stay safe while having fun.
Southeast Louisiana Council
COOL IT: Wild Water Wednesday offers a break from merit badge instruction and a chance to take advantage of open aquatics areas — especially the 40-foot slip-n-slide by the lake!
STAY LATE: The V-Bar fun doesn’t stop when supper ends. Each evening features something special. We’re told the Watermelon Bash, ice-cream social and Friday night closing campfire are not to be missed.
GO GUMBO: They’re called “gumbo troops,” and they’re made up of individual Scouts who, for whatever reason, couldn’t attend summer camp with their troop. Now everyone can experience summer camp and make new buddies.
Camp Raven Knob
Old Hickory Council
Mount Airy, North Carolina
JUMP RIGHT IN: The docks at Lake John Sobotta give you multiple jumping-off points into aquatics awesomeness. Earn a merit badge (or three) — or just have fun kayaking, rowing, sailing or getting your lifeguard certification.
SHINE ON: At 9 p.m. each Tuesday, the nature staff invites you to a “frog hunt,” where you’ll search for nighttime wildlife. It’s required for Scouts earning the Reptile and Amphibian Study merit badge but open to all.
GET CRAFTY: Head to the handicrafts area to tie-dye a T-shirt or braid your own paracord survival bracelet. You can also finish up requirements for merit badges like Art, Basketry and Wood Carving.
Camp Buffalo Bill
Central Wyoming Council
FIRE IT UP: Bring long pants and sturdy shoes if you want to earn Metalwork, one of the camp’s most popular merit badges. Learn to manipulate red-hot metal that was heated in a handcranked coal forge.
GET OUT THERE: Venture into Yellowstone for an unforgettable experience at the country’s first national park. Choose from a menu of five-day backpacking, kayaking, rafting or climbing adventures.
JOIN THE CAST: The fast-flowing North Fork of the Shoshone River is one of the nation’s best fly-fishing spots. Lucky for you, Camp Buffalo Bill is right on the river, giving you a shot at catching trout all week long.
Great Lakes Sailing Adventure
Michigan Crossroads Council
Mackinaw City, Michigan
SET SAIL: Step aboard the Retriever, a sailboat that’s your home for a week of crisscrossing the northern Great
Lakes. The 52-foot Retriever has room for up to 12 participants — usually 10 youth and two adults.
LEARN ON THE JOB: No sailing experience? No problem. A seasoned sailor will teach you the basics of sailboat handling, navigation and marine safety — plus the right way to cook, sleep and live on a boat.
DROP ANCHOR: Pick which ports you’ll visit on Lake Huron or Lake Michigan. Sample that famous Mackinac Island fudge, hike the trails of Beaver Island or fill your camera roll with photos of lighthouses.
Fire Mountain Scout Camp
Mount Baker Council
Mount Vernon, Washington
GAIN ELEVATION: Climb, jump, balance and swing at the Fire Mountain COPE course. COPE, or challenging outdoor personal experience, takes teamwork and confidence-building to new heights.
STAY COOL: Want a break from the summer heat? Average summer temperatures at Fire Mountain are in the upper 70s, and the camp’s huge evergreen trees offer plenty of shade. Bonus: The bug population is low.
TAKE THE PLUNGE: Fire Mountain’s lake features a swim beach complete with palm trees and sand. Head to Sea Dog Marina to try sailing, rowing, canoeing, kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding.
Shaver Lake, California
PICK A SPOT: Find Chawanakee on the banks of Shaver Lake, a popular recreation destination in the Sierra National Forest. One look and you’ll see why vacationers visit to water-ski, fish for trout and camp among the pines.
MAKE A SPLASH: Head to Boy Scout Cove on Shaver Lake to earn your Canoeing, Kayaking, Lifesaving, Rowing, Small Boat Sailing or Swimming merit badge in a setting that belongs on a postcard.
SAY ALOHA: Celebrate Hawaii on the mainland during Aloha Friday. Wear your Hawaiian shirt to the luau-style barbecue in the afternoon. That night, head to the Point Campfire Bowl for an unforgettable closing show where troops show off their best skits and songs.
Massawepie Scout Camps
Seneca Waterways Council
Tupper Lake, New York
BREATHE IT IN: The camp’s location in the Adirondacks means cool temperatures at night and the call of loons in the morning. But don’t sleep in! With nine ponds and lakes on property, there’s more climbing, kayaking, biking, swimming and log rolling than you could fit in a week.
SWITCH IT UP: For something different, try the Mountain Fox program for older youth. Leave your troop after breakfast to enjoy daylong outings to climb a mountain, conquer Class IV rapids and more — while still making it back for dinner!
GO FOR IT: Massawepie is the launch point for three- and six-day backpacking, canoeing or fishing treks through the Adirondack Mountains. Choose one of 12 predesigned treks — or customize your own.
Where are you headed this summer? Whether it’s one of these camps or another, let us know below.
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