We started April off just as we should… with the threat of snow! Luckily, it only threatened, and a crew of nine Scouts set off for their first backpacking experience through the wilds of Wharton State Forest.
After a frog-filled night at Goshen Pond, Troop 48 spent the first day following the Mullica River Trail 5 1/2 miles to Mullica River Camp, our home for the night. Some Scouts took a nap there, others explored, and a pair opted for another 10 miles of hiking in the area… you know, for fun.
Then it was warm campfires and warm backpacking meals before a night under the (thankfully not snowing for once) clouds.
On our last day, it was 4 miles to Batsto, then a short stroll across to the parking lot where we were picked up.
The trip was tough at times, but everyone did a great job!
This was going to be a nice, chilly weekend for Troop 48 when we went out to Kutztown, Pennsylvania, visit the Crystal Cave. We headed out on our long journey, and after a while of driving, we reached our destination for the night. We had begun to set up camp in the dark of the night, assembling our tents so we could sleep in them in our cozy sleeping bags, waiting for the next day to arrive.
When the next morning came, it was a tiny bit chilly out, but not enough to discomfort us for the whole morning. We got ourselves dressed, made our nice breakfasts, and we had packed gear that we’d be needing when we went out to visit Crystal Cave, and Roadside America!
Our drive to Crystal Cave not much time at all. We did go by a huge Cabela’s store, a place we’d be visiting again, soon. We get there, and we did a bit of looking around at their gift shop, and we saw some pretty nice things. We hadn’t spent much time, when we were suddenly brought out to experience the main reason why we went on this trip, which was visiting Crystal Cave! We walked up the path, leading us to the entrance of the cave. We were also introduced to a small room, where we saw a small video on the basic history of this cave, and its
discovery. We then ventured into the cave, being led by a tour guide, as we were shown the various formations in this cave, each one being given clever names.
After a tour of this cave, seeing the stalagmites and stalactites, we ate our lunches, and headed back out, to visit Roadside America. We get to Roadside America, a little attraction which is basically a huge diorama, and we enter inside the building. We move into the room that has the diorama, and there are toy trains everywhere. This was truly an astonishing masterpiece, I can safely say. The whole thing was as big as the room itself! The whole town was modeled off of towns throughout the U.S., ranging from the wild west in the 1800s, to the 1960s. It was truly a great scene.
After Roadside America, we then ventured out to the Cabela’s store we saw on the way to Crystal Cave. This place was huge. They also had a huge amount of
guns there too, one being a Thompson. That was my favorite part about visiting this store. We also noticed that nearby, was an army surplus store. There, I made the great investment in buying a gas mask. We head back to camp for the day, and I could safely say that we have been satisfied with what went on that day. At camp, we were free to relax or explore, which is what most of us did for that night. We stayed at camp for the rest of that day, and the next morning, we packed up our gear, and we completed this trip.
Back in March, we held our Winter Court of Honor to recognize what our Scouts have achieved since December. Good times, and junk food, were had by all. Thank you to all the families who came out to support our Scouts!
This weekend, we adventured many hours north to Camp No-Be-Bo-Sco in Blairstown, NJ! This is always a favorite month of camping in Troop 48, because it’s the month of our annual cabin camp out!
Adventure was in the cards too, as Troop 48 scaled a mountain from camp to reach the Appalachian Trail. After admiring the views from the top, we ventured down the legendary Appalachian Trail. Along the way, we found more views, bear scat (sadly, no bear), and a lot of remains of old buildings and maybe campsites along the trail! 7 miles of tough hiking, so great job to everyone involved!
After a steep drop down, we circled back to the cabin. There, the patrols had a cooking competition (winner to be announced on Wednesday!), the scrambled to get the patrol gear stored in the trailer as the snow storm hit! They did that quickly, and we got the vehicles and trailer to the upper part of the camp (didn’t want to test an icy hill!)!
While six inches of snow fell outside overnight, the Scouts hid out in the cabin (good scheduling!) where they played Uno, Risk, paper football, and about a million different card games.
Sunday morning, we hiked up to the cars with our gear and started for home, stopping off (of course) at Hot Dog Johnnys, because Hot Dog Johnnys.
As one of the Scouts said when we pulled up, ““I think snow makes a great topping for hot dogs.” Truer words were never spoken.