Scouts, when is a good time to earn a merit badge? How about now!
While I am a registered merit badge counselor for canoeing, orienteering, and
computers, scouts shouldn't contact me directly. Talk to your scoutmaster,
there may be several counselors that your troop works with on a regular basis.
You may give my email address to your scoutmaster. and I can talk with him/her
Remember, before working on any merit badge, you must get your Scoutmaster's permission and have your Scoutmaster sign your blue card.
Our Scout Projects
In September 96, I became the Scoutmaster of the same troop that I earned
my Eagle in as a Scout in (By coincidence, one of the adults on my Eagle Board of Review was on my son's Tenderfoot Board of Review).
Fall 1996 , we started an adventure. We are Hiking, Biking and Paddling
our way from the Indiana border, to the Mississippi River. As of 05/01, we
have hiked the North Creek Trail (starting near the Indiana border), thru the
Thorn Creek Trail (which doesn't exist yet... we used roads), thru the Plank
Road Bike Trail, thru the I&M trail, biked by street from Peru to Spring
Valley (reaching our max speed of 36.4 mph going down a hill on bike) thru
most of the Hennepin Canal trail. So far we have hiked, biked, canoed, and
kayaked over 260 miles of the 280 mile trip (We have also covered more than 200
miles of other trails as well averaging over 150 miles per year. This has
given our scouts enough milage for both hiking and cycling merit badges.
Last winter we built kayaks (see pics below) and we plan on paddling the
Hennepin Canal Trail (where we left off last time). This will lead us to the
Rock River and the Mississippi!
- Our windmill gets used when possible so we don't need to burn propane at night. Our windmill will run 4 automotive dome lights all night. I spotted it for sale in Trading Times and bought it from a farmer for $50. This photo was taken at Hoover
on the camporee field near the sports fields.
- One of our new kayaks on its maiden launch
Each scout built one (this became a big chore as we spent about as much time cleaning the church basement each week as we spent cutting ribs). I made modifications to the plans from within Roy Underhill's book titled
"Build a Log Cabin, and everything to put inside it". The initial kayak made exactly to plans we burned at Kankakee River State Park as our campfire due to its weight.
The paddles are made of a 1x2 and two 18 inch long pieces of PVC (4 inch diameter Schedule-25) piping (Heated and then flattened by heat gun wielding scouts). For floatation, each scout had to save 12 milk gallon plastic containers
with lids. These were tied to the frame in the front and rear of the kayak. A
gallon contains 231 cubic inches of airspace. Every cubic foot of water you
displace is 62.4 pounds of lift so the 12 jugs will lift close to 100 pounds
which is more than enough to keep the boat from completely sinking if you tear
PVC Klondike Sled in the lead. We won first place in 96, but due to a
scheduling error, we had rented a cabin the same weekend of the 97 Klondike so
we were unable to compete. Judged Best Sled in 98! After winning best sled our
sled was banned from further competition so we had to retire it... no more PVC
sleds allowed (if you look closely at the right corner of the photo, you'll
see just how far behind the next sled really is.. the light weight put our
kids about 20 yards or more ahead of the next closest sled during the actual
race). Our sled was made using a 2 inch Schedule 40 PVC frame around a cot
(it was a "rescue" sled and could carry 1 person laying down on the cot frame).
- Text plans for inexpensive cross country skis based on vinyl gutters.
Some Scout Clip Art (and other stuff)