Spring has come with daylight and warm temperatures and plenty of things to do outside. Last meeting you made some good progress on map reading and compass skills. Get ready to put that to the test at our next meeting.
Mr. Cancio will be setting up a course in Fairland Tuesday, March 30 at 6 pm. We will have daylight at least through 7 pm and this will help navigate through the course.
So here is a summary of the next few weeks.
Map reading, compass, and pacing -all part of Orienteering- is going well. Our first meeting in daylight since last fall it was good to actually see you all. A bit of overcast prevented some star gazing and finding our way by Polaris and Orion in the south. All this work also covers Second class requirement 3A on the compass, map orientation, and map symbols. Remind your patrol leader if you need this.
Another opportunity coming up is for the first-class requirements 4a and 4b.
4A) Using a map and compass, complete an orienteering course that covers at least one mile and requires measuring the height and/ or width of designated items (tree, tower, canyon, ditch, etc.).
4B) Demonstrate how to use a handheld GPS unit, GPS app on a smartphone, or another electronic navigation system. Use GPS to find your current location, a destination of your choice, and the route you will take to get there. Follow that route to arrive at your destination.
These skills will help you anytime to find your way and for the Philmont scouts, you will need to find your way. For scouts wanting to go to Seabase, there are no topo maps, but you need to be able to sail by compass from island to island.
Remember, GPS is a nice aid but a good navigator has several different ways to confirm or test where they are and where they are going.
Not to forget knots, but we should do a refresher on bowline, square, and clove hitch.
Next week we will meet once again at Cousin’s Park Field. Hopefully, we will meet former Scoutmaster Mr. Cannon who lives on the corner of the field and Prarie street. For some advance planning we are looking into some dates in May (May 15) and June (12) for Eagle Courts of Honor. We will also need to plan the Order of the Arrow elections and I’m working on some dates with the scouts who will host the elections. OA is the scout honor society and election criteria centers on scouts who do service with good cheer. I know most if not all our scouts fit that criteria but you also need to be First Class.
From Ken Green (adult),
Last weekend Troop 132 ventured to Mt Wachusett for a day of hiking and skiing. We were greeted with a beautiful, sunny morning as seven hearty scouts started up the Balance Rock Trail. We made good time and were on the summit in less than an hour. Icy trails made the hike down a bit more difficult than the hike up; those without traction quickly learned that hiking off the trail brought the safety of softer snow. After a quick lunch in the parking lot, we were joined by three more scouts for an afternoon of skiing. Luckily there was less ice on the ski trails compared to the hiking trails, and many good runs were had. Look to the Troop 132 Facebook page for pictures and be on the lookout for a post with videos.
From Mr. Duggan,
We had a busy scout week. Monday started with the Patrol Leader Council (PLC) meeting and some decisions made. One decision that came out is that March meetings will be held at Cousin's field from 6:00pm to 7:15pm. The focus or theme of the month is Orienteering. Meetings will be around map and compass reading and the pacing will be skills that we develop and learn over the next month. Another decision is that we will skip the first Tuesday meeting in April and focus on Saturday, April 10 for the Scout House clean-up. Scouts who want to work on cooking can start off cooking breakfast for those scouts who will be helping clean up the Scout House. We will follow all this good work with a bike trip.
Tuesday this week was our first meeting at Cousin’s field under a clear sky where the scouts worked on map reading. It was easy to spot the Polaris the north star and Orion in the south. The star to the right in Orion’s belt is Mintaka. This star rises due east and sets due west to within 1 degree anywhere in the world and most accurate around the equinox. Check it out and remember these stars!
Daylight saving is this weekend and next week our meetings will be in daylight. One year of outside meetings. Well done.
If you looked out your window in the last few weeks, you might have seen a young person clearing a neighbor’s driveway or shoveling out a fire hydrant on your street. Many of these young people were scouts from Concord’s Scout Troop 132, as they worked to complete a remarkable year of service during the COVID-19 shutdown.
The Troop, under the leadership of Scoutmaster William Duggan and a cadre of adult volunteers, responded to the needs they saw in the community. They worked hard to implement annual activities like the Christmas Tree pickup, as well as needed activities that reflected the needs in our new COVID world (like making masks for healthcare workers). Most of these projects also supported other local social service organizations, often doubling their impact.
Troop 132 has definitely taken this to heart this year and has done its best to do a good turn for its Concord neighbors.
Written by Scout Leslie Flinn
This blog is a weekly message from the Scoutmaster.