Sunday, November 1, 2009

New Online Duty To God Tracking

I am in the process of setting up our Duty to God tracking at this website. This will be a resource for parents as well as leaders. Parents will be able to view their son's progress on Duty to God requirements, as well as enter new requirements that they complete at home. Parents will need to be set up with an account on the site. Email me to send me your email if you would like this set up. There will be a permanent link to the tracking site here.

I really need help from parents in tracking Duty to God items completed at home. That's one reason for setting this up. In the next few weeks, I also hope to review Duty to God progress with each of the boys individually, so that everything in their book will be tracked online from this point on.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Boating at Starvation

Friday after school we headed out to Starvation Reservoir with 7 Scouts (Ben, Kell, Tom, Austin, Trevor, Brandon, and Brendan) for some boating. We didn't make it to a camp site until just before dark, but the next day, water sports were enjoyed by all, and a few Scouts improved their wakeboarding skills enough to complete the technical portion of the Water Sports merit badge.

After the pristine water conditions of the early morning ended, we brought out THE POPARAZZI, a toy Bro. Riding brought which could most easily be described as "inflatable mayhem." Here is an example of what THE POPARAZZI can do, and of why you better buckle up tight if you're riding it (click to zoom for full effect):

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Operation On Target 2009

Last Saturday we were out again early, this time to climb to the summit of Mt. Loafer for the annual Operation On Target. We had a good turnout of a dozen or so Scouts along with several of the Allen Davis family. Thanks also to John Strong for all the photos used in this slideshow.

The Scouts all made it to the summit well ahead of a couple of the creaky-kneed, over-40 leaders. Everyone had fun sending mirror flashes back down to the neighborhood. We were only able to make a couple of contacts with other teams. There's a nice picture in the slideshow of a good flash from Team 483 on Mt. Nebo. We also contacted Lake Mountain west of Utah Lake, a team on the valley floor in downtown Provo, and my dad was able to spot my 8 inch mirror signal from his house in north Provo.

We had a nice hike back down, with most everyone opting to jog down the last three miles for some reason. My knees weren't feeling up to that, so Austin and I were content to bring up the rear and we only got to the parking lot fifteen minutes behind everyone else. After that we cooled down with some nice shakes at the Wildflower.

Moab Week Long Camp

2 weeks ago we returned from our summer adventure in Goblin Valley and Moab.

This past Thursday we got together at the Ridings and watched the video/slideshow of the trip, which you should be able to watch below. I've never posted a video to the blog before, so I hope this works.

The first highlight of the trip was losing five normally sensible-thinking Scouts in the hot desert for three or four hours. We all learned a lot from that experience, so I feel justified in making fun of them in the video. It's all in fun.

After that we spent the next few days surrounded by spectacular scenery on the Colorado River upstream of Moab, a filming site for many movies, some of which are referred to in this clip.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

We Went to Scofield, and Nobody Brought a Camera

This would be a fun blog post if we had any pictures. Unfortunately, we didn't take any. We headed out to Scofield after school Friday hoping to get into some hot spring fishing. The ice was mostly melted. We caught a few trout in the evening and everyone tried some fresh trout fillet.

The forecast was for a 20% chance of rain on Saturday. This was very accurate if you count "most of the night and solid rain all Saturday morning" as "a 20% chance." Most of us stayed in tents and stayed dry for the night. Matt braved the elements on a cot outside with a tarp over him and slept well. Collin dug himself a grave-shaped hole in the ground to sleep in, "to provide insulation and keep me warm." With the runoff from the rain, this turned out to be a messy idea. I wish I had a picture. Collin survived sleeping in his muddy grave, claiming that he got wet but not cold. I thought wet always equaled cold when camping.

A few more trout were caught Saturday morning in the rain. These guys are a bunch of diehards. Other groups of boys I've been with would have been ready to head home as soon as breakfast was done, because it was pretty miserably cold and wet, but we stayed a couple more hours to do some fishing because everyone wanted to.

I'm not sure if it's about the luck or about the skill, but Matt, our champion fisherman from previous trips, got skunked. Most of us caught at least one fish and everyone agreed that it was a fun trip despite the weather.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Ospreys and a Bonfire

As part of our focus on Fishing this spring, we wanted to find something we could do under the area of Service that would help fish and wildlife. I ended up talking with David Lee from the Division of Wildlife Resources, who needed a little extra manpower.

The DWR maintains a 50-acre preserve in the Lake Shore area near Lincoln Beach. Some towers have been put up there for nesting habitat for ospreys. The area used to be farmland, and some plowing work a few years ago inadvertently turned up a large amount of old baling twine. The problem with the twine is that ospreys tend to build it into their nests, and their chicks tend to get tangled in the twine strands which can lead to their death.

So we spent yesterday morning scouring the area and cleaning up all the baling twine. It was a cool morning but everyone worked hard and had a good time. We ended up collecting several giant garbage bags full of twine as well as some large bundles that were too big to bag.

(you can click images for a closer view).

Some of the bundles of twine were too big to haul off, so our wildlife officer gave permission to start the Biggest Scout Fire Ever.

This fire turned out to be too big to roast our hotdogs, but they tasted just as good cooked on the Bingham's grill back home.  We had a good crew of workers and it was nice to have them out on a crisp spring morning to accomplish something useful.

Welcome to the Blog

Welcome! I'm hoping this site will become a useful resource for our Varsity Scouts and parents. I am in the process of putting up links to our calendar and other useful information you need to know. The intention is that this will also become a kind of online photo journal for our team, which the boys can take turns contributing to.

Stay tuned as I take some time today to add features, and our first activity writeup with photos should be up soon.