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BACKPACKING - Elsinga Merit Badge... · PDF fileBackpacking 3 Requirements 1. Discuss the prevention of and treatment for the health concerns that could occur while backpacking, including

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  • BACKPACKING

  • Backpacking

    BOY ScOUTS OF aMERicaMERiT BaDgE SERiES

  • 35863ISBN 978-0-8395-3232-32007 Boy Scouts of America2009 Printing

  • Backpacking 3

    Requirements1. Discussthepreventionofandtreatmentforthehealth

    concernsthatcouldoccurwhilebackpacking,includinghypothermia,heatreactions,frostbite,dehydration,insectstings,tickbites,snakebite,andblisters.

    2. Dothefollowing:

    a.List10itemsthatareessentialtobecarriedonanybackpackingtrekandexplainwhyeachitemisnecessary.

    b.Describe10waysyoucanlimittheweightandbulktobecarriedinyourpackwithoutjeopardizingyourhealthorsafety.

    3. Dothefollowing:

    a.Definelimitsonthenumberofbackpackersappropriateforatrekcrew.

    b.Describehowatrekcrewshouldbeorganized.

    c.Tellhowyouwouldminimizeriskonabackpackingtrek.

    4. Dothefollowing:

    a.DescribetheimportanceofusingLeaveNoTraceprincipleswhilebackpacking,andatleastfivewaysyoucanlessenthecrewsimpactontheenvironment.

    b.Describepropermethodsofhandlinghumanandotherwasteswhileonabackpackingtrek.Describetheimpor-tanceofandmeanstoassurepersonalcleanlinesswhileonabackpackingtrek.

    c.Tellwhatfactorsareimportantinchoosingacampsite.

  • 4 Backpacking

    5. Dothefollowing:

    a.Demonstratetwowaystotreatwaterandtellwhywatertreatmentisessential.

    b.Explaintoyourcounselortheimportanceofstayingwell-hydratedduringatrek.

    6. Dothefollowing:

    a.Demonstratethatyoucanreadtopographicmaps.

    b.Whileonatrek,useamapandcompasstoestablishyourpositiononthegroundatleastthreetimesatthreedifferentplaces,ORuseaGPSreceivertoestablishyourpositiononatopographicmapandonthegroundatleastthreetimesatthreedifferentplaces.

    c.Explainhowtostayfound,andwhattodoifyougetlost.

    7. Tellhowtoproperlyprepareforanddealwithinclementweather.

    8. Dothefollowing:

    a.Explaintheadvantagesanddisadvantagesofthreedifferenttypesofbackpackingstovesusingatleastthreedifferenttypesoffuel.

    b.Demonstratethatyouknowhowtooperateabackpackingstovesafelyandtohandleliquidfuelsafely.

    c.Prepareatleastthreemealsusingastoveandfuelyoucancarryinabackpack.

    d.Demonstratethatyouknowhowtokeepcookingandeatinggearcleanandsanitary,andthatyoupracticepropermethodsforfoodstoragewhileonabackpackingtrek.

    9. Dothefollowing:

    a.Writeaplanforapatrolbackpackinghikethatincludesaschedule.

    b.Showthatyouknowhowtoproperlypackyourpersonalgearandyourshareofthecrewsgearandfood.

  • Backpacking 5

    c.Showyoucanproperlyshoulderyourpackandadjustitforproperwear.

    d.Conductaprehikeinspectionofthepatrolanditsequipment.

    e.Whilecarryingyourpack,completeahikeofatleast2miles.

    10.UsingLeaveNoTraceprinciples,participateinatleastthreebackpackingtreksofatleastthreedayseachandatleast15mileseach,andusingatleasttwodifferentcampsitesoneachtrek.Carryeverythingyouwillneedthroughoutthetrek.

    11.Dothefollowing:

    a.Writeaplanforabackpackingtrekofatleastfivedaysusingatleastthreedifferentcampsitesandcoveringatleast30miles.Yourplanmustincludeadescriptionofandroutetothetrekarea,aschedule(includingadailyschedule),alistoffoodandequipmentneeds,asafetyandemergencyplan,andabudget.

    b.UsingLeaveNoTraceprinciples,takethetrekyouhaveplannedand,whileonthetrek,completeatleastoneserviceprojectapprovedbyyourmeritbadgecounselor.

    c.Keepadailyjournalduringthetrekthatincludesaday-by-daydescriptionofyouractivities,includingnotesaboutwhatworkedwellandthoughtsaboutimprovementsthatcouldbemadeforthenexttrek.

  • Backpacking 7

    contents

    Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

    PlanningandPreparation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

    MinimizingRisk. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

    BackpackingClothing. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31

    BackpackingGear. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39

    LeaveNoTraceBackpacking. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59

    FindingYourWay. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67

    BackcountryDining. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75

    ExpecttheUnexpected . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85

    BackpackingResources. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 93

  • Backpacking 9

    .introduction

    IntroductionImagineyourselfandafewScoutfriendshikingaruggedtrailthroughmountains,alongrivers,anddeepintoforests.Yourpacksholdallthegearandfoodyouwillneedforyourstayinthebackcountry.Withmapandcompassyoustudytheterrainaheadandchooseagoodplacetospendthenight.Youknowfromthelookofthecloudsthataneveningstormmightbecoming,soyouwastenotimemakingcamp.

    Aftercookingatastysupperoveryourbackpackingstove,youhangyourfoodfromatreetoprotectitfromanimalsandthencrawlintoyourtent.Thesoundofdistantthunderletsyouknowastormisrollingin.Thefirstdropsofrainlullyoutosleep.Later,youlookoutandseethemidnightskyblazingwithstars.

    Inthemorningyoumoveon,leavingbehindnosignofyourcamp.Adventuresfillyourdays.Yourlegsbecomestrongandyoureyessharp.Youdrawonyourskillsasahiker,camper,cook,pathfinder,leader,andexpertinLeaveNoTraceprinciples.

    EarningtheBackpackingmeritbadgewillbedemandingbutrewarding.Youwilllearnwhatequipmenttocarryonyourbackandwhatknowledgetohaveinyourhead.Youwilldis-coverhowtoprotecttheenvironmentbytravelingandcampingwithoutleavingatrace.Masterbackpackingsbasicsandyouwilldevelopanevendeeperrespectfortheoutdoors,forthosewhotravelwithyou,andforyourself.

  • Backpacking 11

    .planning and preparation

    PlanningandPreparationAbackpackingadventurerequiresplanning.Anticipatingtrailconditions,traveldistances,weatherconditions,theavailabilityofwater,andcampsitelocationswillhelpyouandyourcrewputtogetheraplanthatisjustrightforthecircumstances.Yourgoalistomakegoodestimatesofwhattoexpectintheback-countryandthentopreparewellenoughsothatyouarereadyforwhatevercomesyourway.

    Themostusefulplanningtoolsforbackpackersareanote-bookandasharppencil.Puttingideasonpaperencouragesyoutothinkthemthrough.Checklistswillhelpyoumakesureyoudontforgetanything.Afteratrekyoucanreviewyournotestoseewhatworkedwellandwhatcanyoucanimprovethenexttimearound.

    choosing Your DestinationAlmosteverypartofournationhasparks,forests,andotheropenspacesthatScoutscanexplore.Inchoosingaplacetogo,youfirstneedtocollectgoodinformation.

    Planning a trek is

    a matter of looking

    ahead, predicting

    the conditions

    you will find, and

    then preparing to

    meet them.

    Planyouradventurewithyourgroupmembersinmind.Takeintoaccounttheirexperienceandknowledge,interests,andphysicalabilities.

    Checkoutbackpackingguidebooksatyourlocallibrary.ContactanofficeoftheForestService,NationalParkService,BureauofLandManagement,orstateorlocalconservationandrecreationagencies.TheBSAlocalcouncilofficeservingtheareawhereyouwillbebackpackingmightalsohavevaluableinformation.

    AnotherveryhelpfulresourceisBackpacker magazinesWebsite.Visithttp://backpacker.trimbleoutdoors.com/backpacker/home.aspxwithyourparentspermission,ofcourse.

  • 12 Backpacking

    planning and preparation.

    Onceyouhavedecidedonageneralareatovisit,gettopographicmapsoftheregionandplotsomepossibleroutes.Findoutwhereyoucancampandconsidertheelevationgainsonthetrails.Checkifyouwillneedpermissiontocrossanyprivatelandorifyouwillneedtoobtainpermitsfrompublicagencies.Forsomepopularlocationsespeciallynationalparksyoumayneedtoreserveaspotasearlyassixmonthsinadvance.So,startplanningearlyforabigsummerhike.

    pacing YourselvesPlanthedistancesofyourfirstbackpackingtreksconserva-tively.Itisbettertohavetoomuchtimetoreachadestinationthantoolittle.Whenplanning,considerweather,terrain,physicalconditioning,andweightofgear.Asagroup,doyouwalkwithaquickstrideorataleisurelypacewithfrequentpausestoappreciatethescenery,watchwildlife,andtakephotographs?Allowenoughtimetoenjoyyourself,staysafe,andhavetimeforactivitiesotherthantravelingandsettingupcamp.

  • Backpacking 13

    .planning and preparation

    Eventhebest-preparedcrewshouldplanforunexpectedevents.Giveyourselvesextratimefortravelingeachdayincasetheweatherturnsbad,theterrainismoreruggedthananticipated,orthereismuchtoseeanddo.Alayoverdayduringalongertrekwillalloweveryonetorest,setoffonsidetrips,ortakethetimetoprepareaspecialmeal.

    getting TherePublictransportationissometimesagoodwaytoreachthetrailheadtobeginabackpackingtrip,althoughtravelingbyprivatemotorvehicleisoftenmoreconvenientandpractical.Ifyoudecidetodrivetothetrailhead,arrangecarpoolssothatyoudonttakemorevehiclesthannecessary.Parkingisoftenlimitedattrailheadsand,tohelpprotecttheenvironment,wildernessareasdonotallowmotorizedvehicles.Plus,youwillsavemoneyongas.Anotheroptionmightbetoarrangetohaveyourgroupdroppedoffatonetrailheadandpickedupatanothersothatyoucancompletearoutewithoutbacktracking.

    If you must leave

    your vehicles at

    the trailhead,

    check with

    land-management

    agencies and

    local guidebooks

    first. Find out

    where you should

    leave your

    vehicles and

    whether you

    will need

    parking permits.

    Makeyourtrekplanflexible.Coverthebasicssothatyouhavetherightgear,enoughfood,andaworkableitinerary,butrememberthatitisimportanttobeabletoadapttochangingconditionsinthefield.Plananalternativerouteincaseyouroriginalplansfallthrough.

  • 14 Backpacking

    planning and preparation.

    The Trip planWhenyourcrewhasagreedonanitineraryforatrek,writedownyourplans.Includewhowillbegoing,adetaileddescriptionoftheintendedroute,aday-by-dayschedule,alistoffoodandequipmentneeds,anemergencyresponseplan,andabudget.Leavecopieswithseveralrespons

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