In February there was an annual event called the Klondike Derby. The Mount Ogden district had a record turnout of 455 individuals. This was 35% more than last year’s record high.
Klondike Derby is a winter competition event for Scouts during which patrols will pull their Klondike sleds along a course. Along the way, they will be tested on scouting skills at various stations. Sometimes the stations are named after towns such as Anchorage or Yellow Knife. A derby is usually a day-long event involving a route of several miles and about 12 stations. Beads are earned at each station (town) depending on the boy’s skill level and proficiency. The event finishes with awards and prizes. Klondike Derbies provide an opportunity for Scouts to apply their Scouting skills in a fun competition. The event can be made to come alive with the use of the lore of the 1897 Klondike Gold Rush in the Yukon.
As the boys moved through the towns using their skills they enjoyed mild winter condition. This event was at East Canyon State Park in Morgan county. The elevation is about 6000 feet. There was still no snow and over-night temperatures got as low as the 30’s.
As they made their way through the “cold” north country they worked together to achieve their goals and win some beads. Being in the outdoors is always a high priority for boys. When asked what their favorite activities are they nearly always say, “camping”.
The flag ceremony was well done by patriotic boys learning respect for our nations emblems. After all was finished and the flag was lowered the beads were counted and awards were presented.
Everyone enjoyed a breakfast of eggs and hash browns wrapped in a tortilla. Hot chocolate was not needed but enjoyed.
Scouting builds character and comradery with like-minded men and boys. Learning to survive the elements and come out unscathed is a confidence builder.
Scouting makes boys into men. The outdoor adventures provide many opportunities for boys to learn what they are capable of and what they really can do. This process builds confidence and develops character like little else.
Honoring God and country are a common theme in scouting and a flag ceremony teaches boys respect for our nation and the freedoms we enjoy.
Events such as Klondike Derbies provide a love for the outdoors. Keeping Outing in Scouting is a major goal. Lord Baden-Powell asked, “Where is there a boy to whom the call of the wild and the open road does not appeal?” As scout leaders and parents we must understand the importance of the outdoors in our scouting program. Not only do the boys long for the outdoors but they learn much about themselves and others in the process. Much good will come of this. We are not only providing opportunities for the boys but we are providing leaders for the future. Can there be a greater cause?