The daily activities of Troop 205 as they cycled and hiked in VA.
August 6-12, 2006

These reports were posted each day during the trip on this web site for friends and famlies to enjoy.

Sunday August 6, 2006
Today our intrepid adventurers drove to Virginia, set up camp and cooked dinner. Some went swimming, some played shuffleboard. They worked with a GPS, learning what it does and how to use it.

The troop decided to modify the plan for Monday. The scouts are going to use the GPS to plan the bike ride route for the day. They will use mapping software and hunt for a local geocache. Stay tuned tomorrow and see if they find their cache!
Monday August 7, 2006
It was HOT HOT HOT today! The troop spent the morning going over bike checks, safety and some basic first aid.
Several took the opportunity to practice cooking, making cookies in the dutch oven.
Others spent time fishing, catching 15 inch bass in a local pond.
Some of the scouts used Mr. Wagner's mapping software to plan today's bike trip, which was 25 miles instead of the planned 10. This is all about a boy led troop! They set out to find a geocache and along the way saw James Madison's Birthplace - he was the 5th President of the U.S. They also passed by the Navy Special Weapons Test Area, which was actively testing high explosives. Trip Route
After the ride, and a 1/2 mile hike, they successfully found the geocache.
Other highlights - Dustin caught a crab, and Cody was lost and found. He demonstrated good Scout thinking - picked up his cell phone and called his scoutmaster for help!

Tuesday August 8, 2006
Today's activities started with a 10 mile bike trip to Westmoreland State Park on the Potamac River. Opened in 1936, this was one of the original state parks in Virginia. After a picnic lunch, the troop set out to find another geocache. This was one of the toughest finds yet! They hiked through a forest of holly trees and down a ravine, but successfully found the cache. Afterward, they all drove to George Washington's Birthplace Monument, which includes a museum dedicated to our first president, and a scale model of the Washington Monument. Trip Route
Then it was back to camp for lots of swimming to cool off. Dessert was apple pies baked in the Dutch Oven. During this trip, we have found that they just don't make bikes like they used too, and tube patch kits are a good thing!

Wednesday August 9, 2006
The troop took a beautiful 25 mile bike ride from Richmond to Fredericksburg today, enjoying better weather and a shaded route. While in Fredericksburg they experienced more history at the Stonewall Jackson Shrine. Stonewall was shot by his own troops 3 times one night while out on a scouting mission - they mistook him for a spy. As he was being carried back to camp, he was dropped several times as his bearers were hit by enemy canon fire. He finally lost his arm to a cannon ball that night. His arm has it's own monument in Chancelorsville, while the rest of Stonewall, who finally succumbed to pneumonia, was buried in Fredericksburg. The boys were interested to learn that the treatment for pain included opium and alcohol laced with mercury. They were able to see the bed he died in! Trip Route
Later, they drove through the National Civil War Battlefield Monument of the Battle of Fredericksburg, and saw how the Confederate soldiers dug trenches in the battlefields. The afternoon ended with ice cream for all. This week they are proving that newer is not always better. Mr. Larry's bike may be the only one to survive this week with it's original tires and tubes. Several bikes have been through multiple tubes and patches! The boys are getting experience with a lot of bike maintenance.


Thursday, August 10, 2006
Today we hiked six miles in Oak Creek Canyon in the Shenandoah Mountains. We started out on Skyline Drive, hiked three miles with a 1,100 ft. decent, past three waterfalls, and then turned around and went back up. The top of the mountain was in the cloud, but the bottom was clear.
During the hike, Dustin was attacked by an army of millipedes and got away uninjured. We also saw a doe and her two fawns, which were very close to the trail. All of the boys stopped and watched.
The view from the top of the waterfall was wonderful.
Later, we saw bear tracks around someone's old campsite. Everyone's back at the campsite and preparing for tomorrow’s last bike trip.

Friday, August 11, 2006
We started today's trip at Roosevelt Island in Washington D.C. We rode our bikes past the Lincoln Memorial and across the Memorial Bridge to Arlington National Cemetery. Then we rode up along the Potomac River where we could see the White House. Following the trail, we rode passed the Reagan National Airport where the bike trail goes past the end of the runway. The jets were taking off just a few feet over our heads.
We continued up through Alexandria, Virginia and ended up at Mount Vernon (which was George Washington's mansion). Trip Route
We went back to the campground where some Scouts played shuffleboard,
and others went swimming.
We will be leaving here tomorrow so the kids can be picked up at the church at noon. Everyone had a great time and is very tired.