[the_ad_placement id=”banner-right-placement”]

[the_ad_placement id=”banner-left-placement”]

Here is Chester Troop 36 in one final photo before hitting the road for home. This is also the setting for each of the daily flag ceremonies the boys attended. From left, Patrol Leader Morgan Strange, Cash Monteith, Seth Linn, Wyatt Strange and Scoutmaster Gregg Scott. Photo by Leslie Scott

Chester Troop 36 explores the Redwoods

By Gregg Scott

Staff  Writer

Each summer break from school offers the Boy Scout troops in any given area the opportunity to expand their respective weekend campouts into week-long adventures. For Chester Troop 36 that meant traveling about 250 miles west to attend a week of scout camp at Wente Scout Reservation just off Hwy. 101 north of Willits, CA.  With a Redwood Grove as the meeting place for morning and evening flag ceremonies and an 80-acre lake as a backdrop the scouts were set to enjoy as much of the 2,200-acre property as they could.

 The size of the facility did indeed offer a myriad of merit badge activities, but it also presented one of the challenges for Scouts and leaders alike. Lots of room means lots of walking and for those with the capability of measuring them an average of 20,000 steps a day was not uncommon. Some of the more unique merit badges offered were chess, gardening, mountain biking, fly fishing, horsemanship and space exploration. More traditional offerings included shooting sports (rifle and shotgun), waterfront activities like kayaking, canoeing, small boat sailing and paddleboarding.

Troop 36 was quite busy as they cumulatively completed 17 merit badges and have seven more partials that will be finished in the next few weeks.

The Scout leaders that attended wanted the boys to experience the overall atmosphere of Wente and went prepared to participate in the camp’s theme days such as alternative uniform day, helmet day, wild Hawaiian shirt day, lumberjack day and Class-B day. It was discovered very quickly that the larger troops are not as participative the Chester group; Troop 36 was the only group that showed up in their helmets. Just goes to show that our Scouts know how to follow instructions. Good Job Troop 36.

Wall tents on platforms made set-up pretty easy and individual shower rooms were welcomed by all.  Nobody going to a Scout camp ever expects gourmet food, especially when you are trying to feed over 500 people in a limited time, but Wente’s cook staff did a pretty good job — particularly with the family-style service for each table of eight.

Probably the hardest part of this adventure was the five to six hour trip to and from the venue, and that would never have even happened if Leslie Scott had not stepped up and volunteered to be the two-deep leader to take on this trek. The highlight of the trip home was a much-needed break and dinner at Black Bear Diner in Willows. Great milkshakes! The Scouts had a great time, but appeared happy to be home.

Morning and evening flag ceremonies at the Redwood Grove started and closed each day at Wente Scout Reservation for Chester Troop 36 during the week of July 10 through 16. Photo by Gregg Scott
Troop 36’s little piece of Wente was the ‘Diamond W’ camp site. With six wall tents on platforms, each scout had his own tent to take care of. The only down side noted was that everything was on a hill, don’t drop anything or you might have to chase it down to the road. Photo by Gregg Scott
Troop 36 shows up for flags ready for ‘Helmet Day.’ Oops, they were the only Scout troop to come ready for the theme day. Well, to be fair, maybe they were the only ones to get the memo. From left are Morgan Strange, Wyatt Strange and Cash Monteith. Photo by Gregg Scott
The waterfront on Wente’s 80-acre lake is always a very busy place. The staff offers classes in kayaking, small boat sailing, canoeing, paddle boarding, row boating and of course swimming. Each Scout must pass the BSA standard swimming test before they can participate in any of the waterfront activities. Photo by Gregg Scott

[the_ad_placement id=”banner-left-placement”]