Updated November 8, 2008
Camp Mack and Lancaster Orienteering with Fawn Grove Troop 83, November 14-16, 2008
Friday night everyone arrived and set up camp, and spent some time getting to know each other around the campfire. After a wet evening, Saturday started with a good hearty sausage and egg breakfast.
The Scouts from Troop 83 have been working for six weeks on Orienteering skills, and after breakfast we went through some refresher exercises in using a compass and taking and following a bearing. At times we moved onto a porch to get out of the rain for awhile.
Upon arrival at the Orienteering Event in Lancaster County Park, Scouts were given instruction and assistance by Susquehanna Valley Orienteering Club members to prepare for their event. Older Scouts were assigned to a harder course, and younger Scouts to one of two courses designed to help teach you how to run a course.
Scouts were broken into teams of 2-3 based on ability, and after copying the targets and course onto their map, went to the starting station for their final registration, and starting times. Orienteering is a race to see what team can find all the markers on their course the fastest, so at their start time, they were off!
The beginner trail was over 2 miles and the advanced trail closer to 4. As the boys confidence grew, so did their speed and determination to get to their next markers. At each marker, you check your control number against your map and card, and if you found the correct market stamp your card to record your find.
The trail you choose between markers makes the difference between a good time and a slower time. After locating al markers, you arrive at the final point and get your ending time. After verification that you did find all markers, your time is valid and posted. All our teams successfully completed the course.
The weather during the Orienteering was wonderful warm and sunny. Upon return to camp, we had severe winds, horizontal rain, and tornado warnings. When it passed, the Scouts successfully built a good fire with hot coals. Dinner was spaghetti cooked in a Dutch oven over the campfire, along with garlic bread.
Spare time was used to teach the Scouts knots and lashings for their rank advancement and for future work on the Pioneering Merit Badge.