Frank Rand Summer Camp
Scouts from the troop went to Camp Frank Rand during June 22-28 with seventeen boys attending camp. Everyone had a busy week working on merit badges or advancement in the classes during the day. We shared the camp with Troop 31 from Rio Rancho. In addition to the scheduled campfires on Sunday and Friday evenings we were guests of Troop 31 at a "lantern fire" on Wednesday night. Boys from the troop presented a short skit, told jokes, and lead a song. Additionally, many of the boys went on hikes around Camp Rand, with visits to the mica mine and the Pecos trailhead. The weather was good except for a Thursday afternoon rainstorm that started just after the last afternoon class. The boys had a fun and productive week at camp earning many merit badges and finishing many rank advancement requirements for tenderfoot, second class, and first class.
50 Mile Canoe Trip Hover Dam/Colorado River
On July 19-26 ten scouts and five adults ventured to lake mead to canoe down the Colorado River. They arrived at Lake Mead after nine hours on the road. Camp was set up, and a small group was treated to a buffet dinner at a casino near the campground on Sunday night (a welcome relief from the 115 degree heat!). The group toured Hoover Dam after dinner. Monday morning we drove 14 miles to the Willow beach marina below the dam and began the trip down the river. The wind came up and we traveled about 3 miles before making camp. The fishing gear was retrieved and the hooks were baited in a hurry. Reports of catching trout, carp, bass, and sunfish were verified, although the interest in fishing seemed to decrease by Wednesday. On Thursday and Friday the adults were challenged to a game of ‘football’ in the river by the scouts. A great time was had by all, but the adults enjoyed it the most! Progress was made on advancement during the trip, including the canoeing and motorboating merit badges. Most of the fishing merit badge was completed under the supervision of Mr. Kmatz. The weather was very hot except for rain on Monday night. Thank you to all the adults that went on the trip, and plans are in the works for a future trip!
Eight scouts and two adults left June 15 for a 75 mile backpacking adventure at Philmont Scout Ranch. Those attending the thirteen day adventure were Adam Goswick, Jacob Tompkins, Jamie Ritchey, Brian Hogan, Lucas Keenan, Thomas Woodard, Walter Gaspar, and Tyler Hochla; with leaders Joe Ritchey and Roy Hogan. Joe and Jamie Ritchey flew in from California to attend Philmont with the crew from their former troop. Highlights of the trek were 30-06 rifle shooting, black powder shooting, hatchet throwing, a sweat lodge, fishing, burro racing, and a night hike to beat the Pennsylvania crew back to base camp. After completing seven more hours of service projects, each hiker will earn the 50 Miler Patch. Through sleet on Mt. Phillips and down the endless Tooth of Time, a good time was had by all. They made it!
On July 24th a contingent from the Great Southwest council flew from Albuquerque to Washington, DC for the Boy Scout National Jamboree. Of the eighty members of this contingent, Troop 409 accounted for the most from any troop, six scouts and two leaders. The scouts attending were Steven Hall, Brian Hogan, Lucas Keenan, John Melloy, Scott Montgomery, and Thomas Woodard and those leaders were Dan Johnson and Joan Woodard. In addition Bob Longoria served on the National Jamboree Staff. The two week trip started with four days of touring the DC area’s sights as well as meetings with Senators Domenici and Bingaman and Congressman Redmond. The Jamboree started at Fort AP Hill, Virginia on a hot day - 105oF and 90% humidity. During this grueling day of camp setup, we witnessed the building of a city of 35,000. Then the Jamboree, held only every four years, began. Everyday there was a wide variety of activities – aquatics, sail bording and canoeing; archery, rifle and pioneering; the Merit Badge Midway with the best in the country teaching over 70 badges; the Army Action Center; the fishing lake, Brownsea Island and much more. Patch trading was an important activity, with trading taking place anytime, anywhere. A special event was the visit of President Clinton on July 20th. The procession of 30,000 scouts in 750 troops with each troop caring an American flag, as they entered the arena, is a sight we will long remember. The food was actually pretty good and the logistics were very impressive – one breakfast of cereal, milk, and a banana translate into 3,200 full size boxes of cereal, 3,200 cartons of milk, and 32,000 bananas, delivered to 3,000 scout patrols in 750 troops. Every scout at the Jamboree had a great time, and many of those are already planning to go to the next one. We hope to see many more from Troop 409 at Fort AP Hill, 2001!
For Venture outing to Wheeler Peak, on October 9th and 10th
On October 9th and 10th, a few members of the Venture Crew (consisting of Brian Hogan,
John Delambre-Melloy, and Jesse Smith), along with scoutmasters Arlee Smith, Roy Hogan, and Star
Scout Justin Hogan, took a trip to Taos Ski Valley, home of Mount Wheeler, the tallest peak in
We spent Friday night camping in the Taos Ski Valley. The next morning we began our
hike. Our first stop was a Lake Williams. It was 1 ½ miles from the "trailhead", if indeed
you could call that muddy little road at the base, to Lake Williams. After we rested at the
lake, we started our ascent of more than 3,000 feet, at a steep incline. The trail leading
up had no switchbacks and was layered with snow. Part of the hike was frustrating because
of false summits, of which there were about 3. Roy Hogan wore shorts until we got to the true
summit, where the wind chill factor was below zero, and the wind was blowing at a screaming
50 miles-per-hour. When we did reach the top, Mr. Hogan put on a sweatshirt and some long
pants. On the way down, most of us slid through the snow. Back at Lake Williams, we rested
again. The highlight of the trip, according to Jesse, was in the van, returning, listening
to Pecos Bill.
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