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Height & Distance

Winter Games
Snowball Warfare
Skate Sailing
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Snow Statuary
Ice Fishing
Evening Entertainment
Winter Projects
Polar Bear Swim
Snow & Ice

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For the Scout interested in animal life, the book of the snow holds valuable information: how the wild creatures find shelter against the cold, what they eat and how they obtain it, and many other details of absorbing interest.  Plenty of drama can also be found, with all the thrills and suspense of the most exciting adventure story.  Here you may learn how jack rabbit by use of strategy as well as speed made the pursuing dog a ridiculous figure.  There, you see  the hen pheasant that proved just a little too alert and swift for B'rer Fox.  By his trail, the bear writes his record of his last-minute search for a home, the various unsuccessful attempts constituting a veritable comedy of errors.  Often the climax of the drama of the chase is written in the blood of the hunted.  

There are fewer obstacles in winter to following tracks wherever they may lead, if the trail is plain. The frozen ground is easy to cover.  Frozen streams are no barrier.  The dense underbrush of summer no longer bars your passage.  Even marshes and swamps are now firm under foot, particularly if you are wearing snow-shoes.  There is much less to obstruct the view through the woods and the quarry may be seen at greater distance than at any other season (see also, Wild Animals in Winter).

Winter Advancement Hints:

Knot Tying: Patrol holds an outdoor meeting to tie knots with and without mittens or gloves on.  Have Patrols supply themselves with materials that will make it possible to tie each knot as for a particular purpose.    

First Aid: demonstrate treatment for bruises received in sledding, or an ice accident.  Show the proper use of the triangle bandage, and how to carry the injured, placing especial emphasis on the added element of cold weather.   Demonstrate advanced First Aid under severe winter conditions, either on the ice or in deep snow.   For example, rescue a boy supposedly fallen through the ice and on the point of death, give him necessary first aid treatment, build fire or improvise a shelter, or make use of nearby building for shelter, observe proper time for results of treatment.  Demonstrate how, when he is able, the victim  would be transported out of the woods.  Assume the accident occurred at a distance from home, on an ordinary sledding or skating party not supplied with any technical first aid materials.  Do the same sort of activities also with first aid equipment at hand.   Demonstrate treatment for hypothermia or frost bite and let Scouts meet all the requirements under winter conditions.   

Tracking: what better sport than tracking,  in mud or in the snow!  For trailing, conditions in the winter woods are ideal.  The tracks are written with the greatest distinctness and detail on the clear recording page of the snow.  Whole histories of fox and rabbit lie in full view, ready for anyone versed in bird and animal lore to read. 

 The Five Mile Hike: shoe shoes and skis are allowed.  A good objective for this hike is to find a suitable winter camp-site for the Troop.    

Use of Knife, Hatchet, and Axe: knife work for long winter evenings is a great pastime.  Axe work can be made essential in the winter camp.  For Second Class requirements, choose as wintry a day as possible, preferably a windy day, and select a very snowy site in the woods, or one that is exposed, so as to train Scouts to meet safely the necessities of such weather.    

Fire Building: winter gives the Scout a chance to display various fires: for heating, for cooking, on the snow and from wet wood.  After a model shelter-building contest for knife and hatchet work in the cold, hold another using same wood to build a fire in the open, using not more than two matches, and demonstrate care for it and in putting it out.  Do it again on a windy day, and carefully instruct in prevention of the spread of fire or embers.  Of course the Scoutmaster will carefully instruct the Scouts how to distinguish between living and dead timber.   

Cooking: winter appetites lend zest.  Everybody likes a place near the fire.  Use this in connection with the ax and fire-building tests.   

Compass Work: in connection with meeting any of the requirements given above, practice compass work in the open, or mark out the principal points of a mammoth compass on a snowy field, and play the Compass Game.  The absence of trees make winter an ideal time to hold a "compass hike."  The Scouts can fix in their minds certain landmarks to serve as guides in the summer, when they can no longer see so clearly through the underbrush.   

Swimming: select a day when there is plenty of snow on the ground and demonstrate swimming methods in the snow.  Or hold Patrol Contest races, each Scout "belly whopper" on a sled, to propel it over a given course, using any swimming strokes he chooses, and absolutely confining all methods of locomotion to the swimming motions, taking no undue handhold or foothold upon the snow or ice.   

Judging Height and Distance: in connection with any of the above activities, practice judging size, distance, etc. under wintry conditions.  

Map Making: surfaces are easily described because they are more exposed.  Although no longer a requirement, this activity gives the Scout a chance to map some thick woodland that is difficult to explore in summer because of the underbrush or a swampy tract.   

Nature Study: trees are more difficult to study, but they offer the opportunity for many other winter activities.  Scouts should learn to identify trees in the winter
Winter Bird Study: many birds remain in the north all winter and others come down from the Arctic regions.  Study their appearance and habits, set out feeding stations near the camp, and try to tame them.
The winter habits of animals: are extremely interesting.
  Winter constellations: the long, clear nights are ideal for star study. 
The Merit Badge Program has much to stimulate the interest of the winter camper.  Don't overlook this chance for advancement. 







Additional Information:

Height & Distance ]

Peer- Level Topic Links:
Winter Games ] Snowball Warfare ] Skate Sailing ] Woods in Winter ] Snowmen ] Snow Statuary ] Ice Fishing ] Skating ] Evening Entertainment ] Winter Projects ] [ Advancement ] Polar Bear Swim ] Snow & Ice ]

Parent- Level Topic Links:
Winter Camp ] Activities & Recreation ] Food & Water ] Gear & Clothing ] Health & Safety ] Sleep & Shelter ] Travel & Navigation ]

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Last modified: October 15, 2016.