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National Outdoor Award - Camping

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#1 KenD500

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 07:37 AM

I had a Scout earn the National Outdoor award - Camping last night.  My advancement chair had problems getting it at the Scout shop as no one knew anything about it.

 

Link to award

 

I've only seen 1 other Scout in this area with the award.  Do your Scouts earn this?  Are they aware of it?


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#2 LeCastor

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 07:41 AM

I saw this mentioned in Boys' Life a few months ago but there was never any push made in our district/council to promote it and it sounds like that might be the case for your area, too.  If camping/outdoors is lacking in a unit I can see this being a motivator.  However, if the outdoor program is alive and well I don't know if it is needed, in addition to the outdoors-related merit badges we already have.  

 

That said, congratulations to your Scout for taking the time to earn it! :D  


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#3 Gone

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 08:21 AM

I had a Scout earn the National Outdoor award - Camping last night.  My advancement chair had problems getting it at the Scout shop as no one knew anything about it.

 

Link to award

 

I've only seen 1 other Scout in this area with the award.  Do your Scouts earn this?  Are they aware of it?

 

Our Historian posts and keeps track of such award requirements for the troop. Gets posted on the bulletin board. Boys are on their own to track and apply for them. We've had a few. A few years ago we had an adult submit the paperwork for their son. Our troop scribe asked the parent top have the scout submit the paperwork. Two years went by, they never did and the kid aged-out. Obviously meant more to mom than the scout.

 

Good job!


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#4 Eagle94-A1

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 08:48 AM

I never saw the needs until I looked at JTE. 4 camp outs and summer camp get Bronze?!?!?!?!?!?!


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#5 SpEdScouter

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Posted 05 August 2015 - 05:42 AM

It looks pretty cool but where on the uniform or sash would one put it? Most "extra" badges like this are worn on the back of the sash but this seems to be a major award.

 

I think instead of it being a sew on patch it would be better to be some sort of pin or medal like the religion medal is.


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#6 Gone

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Posted 05 August 2015 - 05:54 AM

It looks pretty cool but where on the uniform or sash would one put it? Most "extra" badges like this are worn on the back of the sash but this seems to be a major award.

I think instead of it being a sew on patch it would be better to be some sort of pin or medal like the religion medal is.

I suspect in the temporary patch area on the right side of the uniform or on the back of the sash.

Edited by Bad Wolf, 05 August 2015 - 05:54 AM.

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#7 KenD500

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Posted 05 August 2015 - 07:22 AM

I suspect in the temporary patch area on the right side of the uniform or on the back of the sash.

Yep.  It goes in the temporary patch position.  The Scout that earned it decided to sew it on.

 

The patch itself is smaller than I expected.

 

There is a medal that one can earn - the National Medal for Outdoor Achievement.  link


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#8 perdidochas

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Posted 05 August 2015 - 09:24 AM

I had a Scout earn the National Outdoor award - Camping last night.  My advancement chair had problems getting it at the Scout shop as no one knew anything about it.

 

Link to award

 

I've only seen 1 other Scout in this area with the award.  Do your Scouts earn this?  Are they aware of it?

We have a few scouts that have gotten the camping award.  Will have a few more in the next year or two, along with some getting the aquatics.  Every new Eagle should have the Camping award, IMHO.  If they don't, they are Paper Eagles. 


Edited by perdidochas, 05 August 2015 - 09:27 AM.

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#9 dfolson

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Posted 05 August 2015 - 09:50 AM

We have had a few Scouts earn it.  2 of the 3 were Eagles, the third is still on his path. They recently added a Conservation segment and expanded it to Sea Scouts and Venturing. 


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#10 Eagle94-A1

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Posted 05 August 2015 - 11:20 AM

Don't know why the Sea Scouts and Venturers would be interested in it since the Ranger Award was the reason this award was created. Boy Scout and Varsity Scout leaders in some areas were upset about only Sea Scouts and Venturers being able to earn Ranger, so national created this one.

 

In my son's troop, it's not promoted. Then again, we are not advancement oriented, but program oriented. We have only gotten "First Class" oriented because of Philmont.


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#11 Hedgehog

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Posted 06 August 2015 - 06:05 AM

I had a Scout earn the National Outdoor award - Camping last night.  

 

 

I've only seen 1 other Scout in this area with the award.  Do your Scouts earn this?  Are they aware of it?

 

I didn't know about that.  Thanks for posting.  I looked at this with my son and we realized he qualified for Camping and by the end of the summer would be 8 nights away from a gold device.  He is will be one merit badge short of hiking and 100 miles (a 50 miler and then another 50 miles) short of riding.  I think that the National Medal for Outdoor Acheivement would be a great capstone to my son's scouting experience (and a great goal to keep him involved after earning Eagle). The hardest one would be aquatics because he is not a strong enough swimmer to do a mile swim (I couldn't either) -- but maybe that is the challenge that he needs to improve.

 

My problem is with the "under the auspices and standards of the Boy Scouts of America."  That cuts around 10 days of camping and around 50 miles of backpacking / hiking since joining scouts two and a half years ago.  I can work with our Troop to make more opportunities available for the boys to meet the requirements but the under the auspices langage really will hurt the scout in a unit that doesn't have those opportunities but actually engages in the outdoor activities on their own or with their family.

 

It is interesting that the Camping device requires 25 more days but doesn't restate the "under the auspices" requirement.  The hiking device requirements refer back to "as outined in requirements 2 and 3" which doesn't make sense because those are the merit badge requirements.  Others are similarly vague.  It looks like you can sail for 25 hours in requirement 4 for aquatics outside the auspices of the BSA (he wants to go small boat sailing to practice what he learned in the merit badge program this summer).  Any thoughts on that or am I being too creative in trying to find a way  to do these things outside of our program.


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#12 Gone

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Posted 06 August 2015 - 09:10 AM

My problem is with the "under the auspices and standards of the Boy Scouts of America."  That cuts around 10 days of camping and around 50 miles of backpacking / hiking since joining scouts two and a half years ago.  I can work with our Troop to make more opportunities available for the boys to meet the requirements but the under the auspices langage really will hurt the scout in a unit that doesn't have those opportunities but actually engages in the outdoor activities on their own or with their family.

 

We had a similar issue. Every year the PLC asks guys to sign up if they want to pursue this badge and the segments beneath them. If they do any training hikes, camping, etc., as a group (no matter how small) we will "sanction" it as a unit and therefore (from our perspective) it falls under the requirements for the badge.

 

Family-based stuff is a bit harder because you'd have to follow other BSA rules (tour plan, two-deep, WRFA training, other training, etc.) to technically qualify the outings. The patrol-based stuff can easily qualify so we encourage that a bit more.


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#13 Hedgehog

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Posted 09 August 2015 - 07:05 AM

Found this:  http://blog.scouting...s-requirements/

 

Bryan says that you get credit for what you do for merit badges -- which in some instances can be done on an individual basis.  So the 16 mile backpacking trip my son and I did for his backpacking merit badge counts as well as the 12 mile hike that we did which qualifies for his hiking merit badge.


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#14 Gone

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Posted 09 August 2015 - 08:13 AM

Found this:  http://blog.scouting...s-requirements/

 

Bryan says that you get credit for what you do for merit badges -- which in some instances can be done on an individual basis.  So the 16 mile backpacking trip my son and I did for his backpacking merit badge counts as well as the 12 mile hike that we did which qualifies for his hiking merit badge.

Assuming the trek plans are done before the trek and all the elements are accounted for, and the trek log updated after the trek, sure.

 

But the events would need to be done specifically for the various badges or awards and NOT family things.

 

"It is not meant to include activities that the Scout undertakes that are unrelated to Scouting — e.g., family or church group camping, running as part of the school cross-country team, etc."

 


Edited by Bad Wolf, 09 August 2015 - 08:15 AM.

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#15 Hedgehog

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Posted 09 August 2015 - 10:50 AM

Assuming the trek plans are done before the trek and all the elements are accounted for, and the trek log updated after the trek, sure.

 

For any of those treks, my son did all the planning and all the navigation -- they count for the badges and therefore they count for the award.

 

But the events would need to be done specifically for the various badges or awards and NOT family things.

 

Agreed.  But, if a scout does a 3 day 15 mile backpacking trip with his family and that counts as a requirement for the Backpacking Merit Badge (which it does, because there is no "under the auspices" requirement for the Backpacking Merit Badge), then it counts for the award.  Same for bicycling -- the rides for the Cycling Merit Badge don't have to be done as part of the troop.  Being done for a merit badge and being done as a family thing are not mutally exclusive - in most cases. Going camping is a different story, because the Camping Merit Badge requires 20 nights of camping at "designated Scouting activities or events."


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#16 Gone

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Posted 10 August 2015 - 06:31 AM

@Hedgehog I'm not sure about family trips to be honest. The section quoted above comes straight from the same source. I take that to mean that the scout can do these events by himself, with friends or with a family member provided they are done specifically for the MB. The wording seemed to directly preclude "family" events.

It would be interesting to get BSA's definition on family events. Most families don't hike or backpack but I could see an MBC giving credit for a scout where families did do that. I suspect BSA is trying to avoid scouts taking credit for the impromptu family hike that might happen on a family vacation.

MBCs have some latitude here. It it's obvious the scout planned or completed the activity according to the requirements it should be immaterial who went along for the trek, as long as the requirements were met.
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#17 Stosh

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Posted 10 August 2015 - 09:01 AM

I'm thinking that if the boy plans out the hike FOR THE FAMILY it should count as well.  

 

"Well, Little Johnny, what do you want to do this weekend?"

 

"I think we should go hiking at XXXXX State Park and see the XXXXX and have a picnic, and I get to plan it all out for everyone."

 

Okay, that isn't going to count?  Just because he's going with his family and not his buddies?  Doesn't make sense to me.


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#18 Gone

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Posted 10 August 2015 - 09:29 AM

I'm thinking that if the boy plans out the hike FOR THE FAMILY it should count as well.  

 

"Well, Little Johnny, what do you want to do this weekend?"

 

"I think we should go hiking at XXXXX State Park and see the XXXXX and have a picnic, and I get to plan it all out for everyone."

 

Okay, that isn't going to count?  Just because he's going with his family and not his buddies?  Doesn't make sense to me.

 

Exactly. I suspect BSA wants to avoid giving credit for the 10 mile hike dad says the family has to go on when they hit Big Bend NP and then have that count towards an MB.


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#19 Hedgehog

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Posted 11 August 2015 - 06:29 AM

@Bad Wolf, I don't think we are disagreeing.

 

MBCs have some latitude here. It it's obvious the scout planned or completed the activity according to the requirements it should be immaterial who went along for the trek, as long as the requirements were met.

 

I think that is the test.  If it counts for the merit badge, it counts for the award.  For the Hiking merit badge, they need to prepare a hike plan and do the hike for it to count.  It doesn't matter who they do it with.  For the Backpacking merit badge they have to "participate" in the three 3 day 15 mile treks and write a plan for and then do the 5 day 30 mile hike.  Again, it doesn't matter who they do it with.  For those badges, I accept hikes and treks done with family or other groups because the requirements don't say it has to be done through scouting.   I have a scout going on a 4 day backpacking trip with his Eagle Scout Uncle in Alaska this summer -- you can bet I"m giving him credit for that for the Backpacking Merit Badge.  

 

Outside of the merit badge context, nothing done with family counts.  My son and I could backpack the entire AT next summer and that wouldn't count toward the award.  I guess that makes sense because it forces scout programs to become more outdoor oriented (you want the award, you plan outdoor activities that count toward the award).  Fortunately, as a troop, we camp 12+ nights a year (not including summer camp), hike 5 to 8 miles on most campouts, have monthly bike rides or hikes,  try to schedule two 15 mile backpacking treks and one thirty plus mile trek and do at least one float trip.


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#20 Gone

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Posted 11 August 2015 - 06:38 AM

Outside of the merit badge context, nothing done with family counts.  My son and I could backpack the entire AT next summer and that wouldn't count toward the award.


Sure it would. BSA doesn't want to count family events that are obviously not meeting the requirements. Visiting the Grand Canyon and dad says let's go hiking does not count. Son and dad hiking the AT would count.

For me the litmus test is whether it was planned and executed according to the requirements. It's preferred it be done on scout events, but not required.
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