New Districts…

Dear Scouters:

The time is finally arriving to change our council from the previous existing fifteen districts down to the new five districts.  This is both exciting and challenging all at once.  In coming weeks you will hear of the specific details through new district Key 3s and their newly formed district committees.  You can even be involved as you serve in your unit or in a district position to help Scouting continue its path in your area. CouncilCommissioner_4k

The ideals and methods of Scouting remain the same.  Our numbers will be fewer than in the past but we can grow.  Of particular importance will be the formation of new packs, troops and crews with strong unit leaders and committees supporting them.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will no longer sponsor units after 2019 but many of their youth will be looking for units to join.  Several new units have ben sponsored in recent months but many more are needed.  Do you know someone who wants to sponsor a unit and has a location where they could meet?  Share that information with your new district leadership right away.

There will be new Roundtable locations and staff forming.  We hope that all unit leaders will come and take advantage of the traditional format of learning and sharing scouting ideas together.  The new districts will be letting you know the when and where of those.

Unit commissioners become as important as ever.  Each unit whether old or new will have a commissioner who can visit and assist the unit committees to access the resources and programs of the district and council.  This friend to the unit should be well known to all and a welcomed guest at unit meetings and activities.

Are you excited for the future?  I am!  Can you see the possibilities?  I can!  Can you join us in launching five new districts and getting to know lots of new Scouting friends?  I am sure you can!  Welcome to this new chapter of Trapper Trails Council history.  It is going to be great . . . because of you.

Russ Tanner – Council Commissioner

Opportunities to help…

Dear Scouters,

As part of the many adjustments being made this year in preparation for a new and different size council next year we have to re-organize our districts.  This means both change and opportunity.  If we take advantage of the opportunity more than we lament the change we can be successful.  I believe that we can do so and it begins now. CouncilCommissioner_4k

We will merge the fifteen current districts into five.  They will be geographical in nature and be led by Key 3’s (District Chair, District Commissioner & District Executive) of experience and enthusiasm.  There will need to be new district committees formed by combining those who wish to continue to serve with those who are new and bring different ideas.  We will see an increase in diversity and a flood of new ways of looking at things.  It can be fun and profitable.

I hope that you will look at your self as a Scouter and see where you can help.  Whether you serve in a unit direct contact position or on the committee, whether you have a district position that now changes or it is your first time to be asked to help on that level, you can make a difference for the boys and girls that Scouting serves.  Yes I said girls.  That is another great opportunity that is now open.  Girls can join packs and troops and should be encouraged to do so.  We need to be ready to serve them too.

Let’s all join in this great time of changes and opportunities with the goal in mind of providing the best scouting experience we can for the youth of our area.  Don’t worry so much about what your new district is called or how it is located as you.  Put your energy into making the new organization work and be effective at delivering the aims and methods of Scouting as it has for over a century.

I commit to do the same and wish good Scouting to you,

Russ Tanner – Council Commissioner

A Scout is Cheerful

Abraham Lincoln said: “Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

A smile and a happy disposition will carry you far.  I have learned that the greater part of our own happiness is determined by our own attitude.  A cheerful disposition not only Council-Presidentaffects you but also those you come in contact with. You never know when a smile and happy greeting will lift someone else who may be struggling.

A Smile (Author Unknown)

A smile is cheer to you and me

The cost is nothing – it’s given free

It comforts the weary – Gladdens the sad

Consoles those in trouble – good or bad

To rich and poor – beggar or thief

It’s free to all of any belief.

A natural gesture of young and old

Cheers on the faint – disarms the bold

Unlike most blessings for which we pray

It’s on thing we keep when we give it away.

So smile and have a cheerful disposition you will be happier for it.


Frank W Browning

Council President

On my honor…

What is an Oath?

When I was 13 years old I was asked to take an oath.  The occasion was my Eagle Scout Court of Honor and the presenter from the local district had me stand in front of everyone and make the Scout sign as I did so.  I felt it was a solemn and special thing.  I knew many were watching me as I did so.  I could sense the expectation was high as I committed to follow the promises I had made as a scout many times but adding a new and higher level of commitment to give back to Scouting more than it had given me.  When I was done I thought about it many times. CouncilCommissioner_4k

I have tried to keep that promise and hone the oath.  I have used it as a compass of sorts to guide me in making decisions when I think about what an Eagle Scout would do or not.  I have received many valuable things from Scouting so it has been hard to keep the score even of doing more for it than it did for me, but I have tried.  The joy has come in the journey more than any destination.  It has been fun trying and while I may never reach that goal, I hope it has made a difference for someone else along the way.

In a world where our youth are told the old and out dated traditions of the past do not matter anymore and life is more about doing what is right for you, I challenge those ideas.  I replace them with ideals of integrity and honesty as found in the Scout Oath and Law where we commit to do more than just hang on for the ride.  I don’t accept the concept of those principles ever going out of style or not making a difference, they simply do.  I think taking an oath is a vital part of forming who we are.  I think it always will be and only those who struggle to understand that seem to differ in that opinion.

So today I proudly say again, On my Honor, I will do my best . . . even though there are changes, distractions and those who oppose, I can always do my best and honor my oaths, and I will.

Russ Tanner – Council Commissioner

Camp Fife 2018

Hello Scouting Alumni,

At Camp Fife this year we have continued to see amazing changes happen to our facilities.  This year we planted 10 trees and a drip system to water them keeping them alive and heathy.  Other changes included a new entrance into camp to help with traffic flow, a new Nature Trail that follows the river, and a new Obstacle Course. Later this year construction of a new amphitheater will take place at camp that will wrap up in the spring of next year.IMG_3030

Many thanks to our terrific donors!

Camp Fife’s facilities continue to improve and get better each year. This change, of course, is nothing without the youth and leaders who attend camp. We had over 4,000 youth attend camp this past summer. We had some truly incredible staff at Fife this summer. If you have not yet come by to see Camp Fife, please sign up for our camp this next season. Our join us at our next activity with the Order of the Arrow ordeal October 12-13, 2018. Hope to see you there!

Camping Promotion

Not all Scout camps are created equal. Sure, each offers a terrific program to entertain and challenge Scouts, but every Scout camp has unique program elements that make it special. Screen Shot 2018-10-04 at 10.54.16 AM

Trapper Trails Council is advertising Camp Loll’s program in Scouting magazine… nationwide.  Watch for the Camp Loll ad in your next Scouting magazine!

Have you seen our Facebook ads for Camp Loll or Camp Hull Valley?

Check out Camp Loll’s advertisement by clicking here.

Camp Loll 2018

Alumni Weekend
Loll 2018 Alumni Weekend was held on August 4th & 5th at Camp Loll. This continues to be a well attended event with some old faithful staff members and many of the most recent years of staff members and their families. We celebrated the 60th anniversary of Camp Loll, and made a point to hear from some of the old timers who regaled us with some of the earliest memories of the camp. The group arrived for lunch on Saturday, set up camp, and then participated in camp activities, that were accommodated by the current staff. That evening, a campfire program was presented by the current staff, to the great amusement of the group. On Sunday, we held a non-denominational worship service, which concluded a little early due to wind and rain. We then convened to the lodge where the annual Alumni Meeting was held and we discussed the more formal organization of the Alumni Committee at the Council, and also planned for our Labor Day Weekend of Service. After lunch, the group packed up and headed home. A special thanks to the 2018 Camp Loll Staff and Camp Director, Delose Conner, who went to extra efforts to make everyone feel welcome and make for a great program. We look forward to more Alumni sponsored activities and seeing more of the many staff members that have worked there over the years. IMG_3024
Camp Loll Summer 2018
This year’s summer camp was successful in many ways. This was a year when there was very little snow when we first accessed camp in early June. However, the entire month of June was rainy and muddy. This made Work Week and Staff Training Week a little difficult. The rain basically stopped when the scouts arrived, and stayed quite dry the rest of the summer.
Loll was able to accommodate individuals and groups that were displaced from Philmont, and the fire activity there. A couple groups stayed multiple weeks and all participated in one of three high adventure activities. All of these folks were not disappointed with their experience in camp and the great high adventure for which Loll is a base for excursions in the Tetons and Yellowstone.
The Loll program continues to lauded. In reviewing the candid troop comments from the various troops, they continue to be overwhelmingly positive, with the favorite part typically being the assigned troop friend (staff member). The more the troop friend is engaged with the troop, the better the overall experience tends to be for the troop. One negative evaluation took aim at the rule to keep on the trails, and not create new trails throughout the camp. We simply had to disagree, and think that our efforts to keep to the trail have helped to beautify the camp to a level that we haven’t seen before. This was especially noticeable this year, when the bear grass blossoms, which are typically every three years, and only in a very small part of this wilderness, were very prominent this year. No one had seen them to this extent in the past, and they were protected by the scouts as never before. Our forest rangers and environmental scientists that visited with them were absolutely amazed with this and the beauty of the camp.
Camp safety was upheld with no serious injuries and no significant lost person events. We were fortunate to have a doctor or medical professional for each week of camp, and all were accommodating to some of the action that was at times required, as a few scouts got sewed up in the first aid room.
The Alumni funded satellite communicators continue to be very helpful in keeping in contact with staff that are accompanying troops on hikes, at times up to 10 miles away. Not only is it helpful to keep tabs on their locations, it also served to help at least one event where the staff member was having questions with how to treat a scout that was having some exhaustion issues on a hike.
Loll is recognized as a reliable partner for health and welfare of the public in the remote part of Teton County, Wyoming. While getting ready for camp, the Sheriff contacted camp and said that they had received a report of a loose kayak on Grassy Lake, about four miles away. They asked is we could check it out. The waterfront director and another staff member were sent with a boat to do just that. They were able to determine the family it belonged to along with a floating life jacket and return it to them, which was reported back to the Sheriff. The Sheriff was so pleased that he didn’t have to send out his own staff to check this out, that he wrote a letter of thanks to the camp director, and indicated that he knew he had a partner with the camp.
Our Camp Committee mobilized on Labor Day Weekend to winterize the camp, pump the latreens and stain the wood buildings. We did this a few other things to keep Camp Loll looking great next year.
Lynn Hinrichs, Camp Loll Committee Chairman