Scoutmaster Minute—Wilderness in Our Backyard

July 15, 2012

SM Minute—Wilderness in Our Backyard

This week I drove up to the State Park.  The fish weren’t biting, so I took a hike.  About 20 minutes down a trail that wasn’t too steep, pretty easy as those things go, the trail got pretty darn close to the river’s edge along a wash out.  It was a good 30 feet down to the rocks and water below and if I hadn’t been watching my step I might easily have joined them.  At the same time, I noticed my cell phone had no signal at all, just like back at the trailhead.

When we go into the backcountry, at least one member of our Scouting party has to be trained in Wilderness First Aid, which is specifically geared to first aid when you’re more than 30 minutes from help.  Now this wasn’t Philmont, or the Boundary Waters.  This park trail isn’t your backyard, but it’s not even that far off the pavement.  And it was more than 30 minutes from help:

  • 20 minutes back to the car
  • ?? to find a cell signal
  • At least 20 minutes back down the trail.

That all adds up to trouble.  But it’s trouble a Scout knows how to prepare for, react to, and survive.

It is said that Robert Baden-Powell was asked, “What exactly should a Scout ‘be prepared’ for?”  To which he responded, “Why, any old thing!’

Be prepared, for any old thing, any old place you go.


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