Scouts learn everything from sailing to survival at week-long camp in Haliburton



 Tyler Gartley (L), Connor Cobean, William Wright, Gregory Dadson, Jeff Bastien, James Hunter, Billy Hamill, Glenn Archer, Geoffrey Dadson and Devin Davey listen to instructions from Alex before trying out the low ropes

 Devin Davey (L), Billy Hamill, Geoffrey Dadson, Jeff Bastien, Glenn Archer, Connor Cobean, Scouter Bob Hunter, James Hunter, William Wright and Gregory Dadson listen to the instructor at Survival Island

 Various groups sail away from the dock at Haliburton Scout Reserve

The Port Elgin Scouts have survived a week of sailing, snorkelling, survival-training, archery, and so much more at the Haliburton Scout Reserve.

Ten youth, Connor Cobean, William Wright, Jeff Bastien, James Hunter, Billy Hamill, Devin Davey, Geoffrey Dadson, Tyler Gartley, Glenn Archer and Gregory Dadson, and three leaders, David Dadson, Bob Hunter and Kevin Ryan, left Port Elgin at 7:30 a.m. July 25, and arrived at Haliburton around 1 p.m. After setting up their campsite, they spent the afternoon enjoying some swim time and experimenting with the rowboats. A thunderstorm rolled through that evening, convincing everyone to call it an early night.

The Scouts participated in a lot of activities most had not done before. Monday, they learned how to sail, using the 14-foot sailboats. Then, they tested their abilities at snorkelling, exploring the bottom of the lake. They also took in some survival instruction, learning about the different types of shelters you can build, fire-starting techniques, and ways to acquire things such as food and water.

Monday night, saw the group on a barge in the middle of the lake taking in the spectacular view of the night sky while enjoying the story-telling of the program staff.
The youth learned to shoot with bows-and-arrows at the archery Tuesday. Then they took in the wonderful view of the countryside before rappelling down the side of a cliff. That night, the Scouts experienced a major downpour with water running through the campsite, but everyone’s equipment managed to stay dry on the site.

Wednesday morning, saw plenty of rain, but it ended around lunch allowing the group to participate in the low ropes which encouraged team work while accomplishing an obstacle course of ropes, tires and tightropes. Following this event they went to the climbing wall where most tried (and succeeded) to climb the rock wall.

Thursday, troop learned to kayak. Almost everyone managed to stay dry as they practised maneuvering the kayaks while playing a game. They were late arriving for the advanced canoe lessons as the turkey dinner ran a little late, however, everyone managed to get in some solo-canoeing before returning to site for the evening.
The Scouts went to the rifle range Friday morning to make up their rained-out rifle time. Everyone managed to hit their target at least once.

Friday morning also saw the campwide shooting competitions. James Hunter shot archery, representing the Venturer-age youth from Port Elgin, and finished second; Tyler Gartley represented the Scout-age youth, finishing just out of the top three; and Scouter Bob Hunter represented the leaders, finishing third. Billy Hamill competed on the rifle range, representing the Scouts and finished fourth.

Friday afternoon, the troop started packing up the site and sent most of the equipment to the trailers Friday night. The campwide campfire was that night and the Port Elgin Scouts learned many new songs and skits from the many groups participating.
Saturday we departed for home arriving in Port Elgin at 5:30 p.m., a tired and excited group.

(next column)

15/08/2009 07:39 PM

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 Glenn Archer tries kayaking

 Geoffrey Dadson (L), Scouters Bob Hunter and David Dadson go sailing

 Tyler Gartley hangs on the short climbing wall

 Jeff Bastien takes his turn on the advanced climbing wall

 Devin Davey rappels down the cliff


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