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#1 Cambridgeskip

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Posted 04 April 2016 - 03:14 PM

Had an interesting scouting weekend.

 

We are very lucky in Cambridge, just outside town in an airfield where our neighbouring scout county (roughly equivalent to what I think you call a Council) keep a motorised glider which they use to run various scout gliding events to vary standards. 18 of our scouts went out to the airfield this weekend for their first experience of gliding. They have a full day there where they cover quite a lot of theory about flight, airfield operations etc, but the highlight of course is that each of them get a 20 minute flight (with an instructor!) where they get to take the controls. Photos on our website here.

 

The reason for putting it in this bit of the forum is because of how amazing it is to see the kids stepping up and actually conquering their own fears.

 

In the briefing room where they were all together there was plenty of bravado. No one admitted in front of their friends to being scared. In reality, when each of them was walked out to the glider nearly all of them admitted to being nervous and one, when she was being strapped in, was clearly shaking. We offered her the chance to back out but no, her older brother had done it, no way was she backing down!

 

All of them came back again absolutely buzzing! To have taken the controls of an aircraft at their age, the youngest was just 10, is something quite amazing. All of them had flown before on airliners. Flying in a tiny two seat aircraft where you can put your hand out the window and then someone switches the engine off and it takes off and lands on a grass strip is a very different experience.

 

Very proud of all of them :)


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#2 MattR

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Posted 04 April 2016 - 03:29 PM

I've done that before. I was scout age and not so far from your location (Scotland, but it's all relative). Rather than a motor on the plane there was a motor on the ground, on the edge of a cliff. Quite a memory as we flew over the abyss.
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#3 Krampus

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Posted 04 April 2016 - 03:35 PM

[BSA just banned thinking about flying or flying at all as being too dangerous. Next: Chewing gum and walking.]

 

We've done this before too, despite all the paperwork we need to submit. Great time!


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#4 Stosh

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Posted 04 April 2016 - 04:08 PM

There used to be BSA Air Scouts to go along with BSA Sea Scouts.  I wonder how long before BSA thinks boats are as dangerous as airplanes?


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Stosh

 

There's a reason why I don't always answer the phone, doorbell or comments on forums.  :)


#5 NJCubScouter

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Posted 04 April 2016 - 08:50 PM

There used to be BSA Air Scouts to go along with BSA Sea Scouts.  I wonder how long before BSA thinks boats are as dangerous as airplanes?


There are Aviation Explorer posts.
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#6 Stosh

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Posted 04 April 2016 - 09:19 PM

50 years ago, I was involved in real state-wide search and rescue missions through the Civil Air Patrol.  BSA's program is exploring aviation as a career.  Big difference.


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Stosh

 

There's a reason why I don't always answer the phone, doorbell or comments on forums.  :)


#7 Cambridgeskip

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Posted 05 April 2016 - 07:31 AM

Air Scouting is still alive and kicking here.

 

Alas though, last year, our HQ withdrew one of its more special badges, Scout Wings. These used to be awarded to youth members who had made a certain number (I forget how many) solo flights in a glider, balloon or powered air craft. They were pretty rare but did mean a lot. HQ say it's been replaced by the new Air Activities staged award. Given though that even stage 6 of 6 does not require a solo flight I don't buy that at all.

 

A real shame.


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#8 Krampus

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Posted 05 April 2016 - 08:39 AM

50 years ago, I was involved in real state-wide search and rescue missions through the Civil Air Patrol.  BSA's program is exploring aviation as a career.  Big difference.

 

Even the ground SAR (S&R) program has been greatly curtailed by BSA in terms of what a Scout is allowed to do.

 

Back in April 3-4 of 1974 I lived in an area that experienced F5 "Super Outbreak" of that year. I recall the local Scout troops and Explorer Posts actively involved in SAR, directing traffic, manning comfort stations and going house-to-house in rudimentary (compared to today's standard) CERT exercises. It was what got me in to Scouting and started my passion for weather and rescue ops.

 

Now a days Scouts would be relegated to handing out water to aid workers.


Edited by Krampus, 05 April 2016 - 08:40 AM.

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#9 Stosh

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Posted 05 April 2016 - 08:54 AM

I was a licensed base radio operator and was responsible for the welfare and grid search of at least a dozen aircraft at one time.  I was 16 years old at the time.  Like you said, handing out water is all the Scouts ever do.

 

So, now my volunteering for Red Cross disaster relief?  I don't just hand out sandwiches and water.


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Stosh

 

There's a reason why I don't always answer the phone, doorbell or comments on forums.  :)


#10 blw2

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Posted 05 April 2016 - 10:18 AM

[BSA just banned thinking about flying or flying at all as being too dangerous. Next: Chewing gum and walking.]

 

We've done this before too, despite all the paperwork we need to submit. Great time!

for real?

I was just looking at the flight plan paperwork a few months ago, trying to set up an aviation even for my 2nd year WEBELOS den.  We ended up doing just an airport visit and tower tour, but only because I couldn't pull off the flights.

 

I've been keeping my ears open for when my local airport pilot's association is putting on their next EAA Young Eagle flight program.  Planning to offer it up to the scouts as an idea.

 

As a pilot myself, I totally get it.  Glad you were able to pull that together for your scouts @Cambridgeskip!


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#11 Stosh

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Posted 05 April 2016 - 10:39 AM

Check with the EAA pilots they can do a Young Eagle flight program as oriented to the Aviation MB.  We did it and the kids all got in flight time.  One of the nicest camporees the boys ever had.


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Stosh

 

There's a reason why I don't always answer the phone, doorbell or comments on forums.  :)


#12 Krampus

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Posted 05 April 2016 - 11:29 AM

for real?
I was just looking at the flight plan paperwork a few months ago, trying to set up an aviation even for my 2nd year WEBELOS den.  We ended up doing just an airport visit and tower tour, but only because I couldn't pull off the flights.
 
I've been keeping my ears open for when my local airport pilot's association is putting on their next EAA Young Eagle flight program.  Planning to offer it up to the scouts as an idea.
 
As a pilot myself, I totally get it.  Glad you were able to pull that together for your scouts @Cambridgeskip!


Don't know if Webelos can do it. Scouts can...at certain ages.
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#13 gumbymaster

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Posted 05 April 2016 - 11:29 AM

There are Aviation Explorer posts.

 

I was an aviation explorer, Post 767. :)

 

Most of us in the post went on to do ground school at the local community college (16 years old, still in high school).

Learned a lot of great things.

 

My most vivid memory, even more than taking the controls and flying the Cessna, was the donut I did on the runway as I over compensated while pulling off the taxiway.


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#14 Stosh

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Posted 05 April 2016 - 12:13 PM

In Civil Air Patrol, we had the opportunity to get our gliders license once we turned 16.  A couple of my buddies picked it up for fun, but without a glider, it was kinda spendy for the ROI.

 

We did get a lot of air time.  One of my pilots had me take the controls. 

 

"Just hold it steady."

 

"Okay, just pull back the stick just a bit."

 

"A little more...."

 

"More.....

 

"A bit more......"

 

"Oops, what do ya think you're doing!  WE'RE GONNA CRASH!"

 

And where do you think I learned about having a sense of humor?  :)


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Stosh

 

There's a reason why I don't always answer the phone, doorbell or comments on forums.  :)


#15 Cambridgeskip

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Posted 11 April 2016 - 01:15 PM

As a follow up to this....

 

While we were gliding has 4 other scouts away on a week long mountaineering course in Scotland, again run by our neighbouring county. I got an email from instructors telling me how they were a credit to the troop and I should raise a glass in a toast to them. One in particular has been described as future instructor material (ie a potential mountain leader) and they would rather like to keep hold of her.

 

Feeling rather proud right now :)


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