BSA Troop 21


Americus Times-Recorder, Americus, Georgia



T-R Travels to New Mexico

Local Boy Scouts enjoy Cavalcade trail ride through New Mexico wilderness


Cimarron, New Mexico — A crew of local teen-age Boy Scouts from Troops 21 and 26 in Americus and their leaders recently returned from a life changing horse trail ride through the Sangre de Cristo Mountains at Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimarron, N.M. Philmont is situated in the Rocky Mountains and covers 214 sq. mi. of vast wilderness with trails that climb from 6,500 ft. to as high as 12,441 ft. Upon arrival at Philmont on June 25, members met their assigned horses, trained for a day, then headed out for a 50-mile ride over nine days.

The group of Scouts and their advisors carried everything they needed to survive during the trail ride and used four pack horses while moving from camp to camp. Starting at base camp, the group was often up at 5 a.m., saddling and packing horses for the day’s ride. They participated in backcountry programs along the way including rock climbing, rappelling, spar pole climbing and gold prospecting. Along the trail, Scouts endured tough challenges including backpacking in bear and mountain lion territory, steep climbs and often-inclement weather. They experienced thunderstorms and hail while riding and the longest trail ride in one day was 18 miles. Oftentimes they met only one other group of Scouts on the trail during an entire day.

Each night they camped in isolated groups, out of sight or sound of all other groups and civilization. At the conclusion of the trail ride the group competed in a rodeo where they were participated in barrel races, flag races, figure eights and steer herding.

The crew made what amounts to a Scouting pilgrimage with their trip to Philmont. Philmont Scout Ranch is the Boy Scouts of America’s premier high-adventure camp and the largest youth camp in the world serving nearly one million participants since 1938.

Those attending included Scoutmasters Tommy McCurley and Mike Ellis, Assistants Mark Barrett and Jody Dillard, and Scouts Alex Purdy, Adam Heath, Jacob Dillard, Chandler Diem, Khelan McGhee, Heerul McGhee, Jake Coptsias, Carl Johnson, Tyler Brown, Matt Ledger and John Barrett.

Special thanks are due to the Americus Kiwanis Club and First Baptist Church, as they sponsor and have supported Troops 21 and 26 for many years. Their support is helping these young men develop character and responsibility and developing them into tomorrow’s leaders.

Published on August 6, 2012


(From the Americus Times-Recorder.  Used with permission.)