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Cub Scout Pack 501
(Woodbridge, Virginia)
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                                                                  SCOUTING IS OUTING!!

Hiking Safety, Leave No Trace and Trail Signs

The Leaders of Cub Scout Pack 501 are happy to share with all who are interested the fun things that they have put together with regards to Hiking Safety, the Leave No Trace Cub Scout promise and Trail Signs. It is our belief that these three things combine and overlap into a core set of skills that every Cub Scout should learn now and continue to develop throughout their scouting experience. It will ensure that they enjoy their time in the outdoors, help others enjoy nature and could possibly safe a life.
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Hiking Safety Guidelines

- Use the Buddy system : Never hike alone.
    A buddies help to take care of each other in case of trouble and it is always more fun to hike with a friend.

- Tell 2 people the 2 W's: Where you will be going and When you will get back.
  If you don't get back in time, people then know where to go looking for you.


- No touching (berries, mushrooms, poisonous 
plants, animals)
   a) You don't know if something is poisonous, so just leave it alone.
   b) This is the animals' house. You wouldn't want animals to come into your house, wreck your things and eat all of your food.
   c) Leave it so that others can also enjoy it.


- Leave No Trace

Ø Plan Ahead

Ø Stick to Trails

Ø Manage Your Pet

Ø Leave What You Find

Ø Respect Other Visitors

Ø Trash Your Trash

- Have proper equipment:
      Footwear: Shoes or hiking boots with socks. Never flip flops or open toed sandles.
      Proper Protection from the Sun: Hat, sunscreen,
      Protection from Bugs: Bug spray
      Keep Hydrated: water, snack, 
      Be Prepared: compass, whistle, cellphone, emergency contact information

- Courtesy on the trail:
       Be a good Cub Scout embassador. Say "hi" or "good morning". Don’t scare people or their pets.
       Let others pass easily and don't be running around like a crazy, noisy mob.

- Know the Rules If You Get Lost
        1) Don’t panic.
        2) Use a whistle. 
     Learn to use an Acorn cap as a whistle.
   3) Stay put.
            It will be harder to find you if you are wandering around.
       Only move if you are in danger.
    4) Leave trail signs if you move. 
        Stay on the trail.

Leave No Trace

Plan Ahead

Watch for hazards and follow all the rules of the park or outdoor facility. Remember proper clothing, sunscreen, hats, first aid kits, and plenty of drinking water. Use the buddy system. Make sure you carry your family's name, phone number, and address.

Stick to Trails

Stay on marked trails whenever possible. Short-cutting trails causes the soil to wear away or to be packed, which eventually kills trees and other vegetation. Trampled wildflowers and vegetation take years to recover. Stick to trails!

Manage your pet

Managing your pet will keep people, dogs, livestock, and wildlife from feeling threatened. Make sure your pet is on a leash or controlled at all times. Do not let your pet approach or chase wildlife. When animals are chased or disturbed, they change eating patterns and use more energy that may result in poor health or death.

Take care of your pet's waste. Take a small shovel or scoop and a pick-up bag to pick up your pet's waste— wherever it's left. Place the waste bags in a trash can for disposal.

Leave what you find

When visiting any outdoor area, try to leave it the same as you find it. The less impact we each make, the longer we will enjoy what we have. Even picking flowers denies others the opportunity to see them and reduces seeds, which means fewer plants next year.

Use established restrooms. Graffiti and vandalism have no place anywhere, and they spoil the experience for others. Leave your mark by doing an approved conservation project.

Respect other visitors

Expect to meet other visitors. Be courteous and make room for others. Control your speed when biking or running. Pass with care and let others know before you pass. Avoid disturbing others by making noise or playing loud music.

Respect "No Trespassing" signs. If property boundaries are unclear, do not enter the area.

Trash Your Trash

Make sure all trash is put in a bag or trash receptacle. Trash is unsightly and ruins everyone's outdoor experience. Your trash can kill wildlife. Even materials, such as orange peels, apple cores and food scraps, take years to break down and may attract unwanted pests that could become a problem.

For more information on Leave No Trace and the Cub Scout Leave No Trace Awareness Award, please visit the Boy Scouts of America "Leave No Trace" resource page.



Hiking Club

Why did your son want to join Scouting?  He wanted to do out-of-doors stuff - hike, camp, and explore nature. Plus, "A Scout Is Fit!"

To that end, Pack 501 has a “Hiking Club”.  The goal will be to get out and hike as often as possible between all of the Pack's other activities or included as part the planned activities, all year round.  

On a his first hike, the Scout earns a “Miles Hiked” patch.  This patch can be worn on his swag vest or in the temporary patch placement area of his uniform.
After that, miles are tracked, and the Scout earns “segments” for each 10 miles that he hikes.


By the time they finish Webelos most of the Scouts who start in the beginning ranks will have more than 100 miles! A determined Scout will likely cross-over to Boy Scouts with more than 200 miles!

While the pack encourages families to hike as often as they can, recognition and mile-tracking will only include pack-sponsored hikes.

Hiking Coordinator & Team: One of our parents acts the Pack “Hiking Coordinator”. This team schedules the hikes and tracks miles.

Hike lengths will typically range 1 – 5 miles. Tigers should have no problem with shorter hikes. We just ensure that the parent-guardian brings plenty of water along, and a few snacks (for both of them).

On longer hikes we will typically eat lunch on the trail (practicing “Leave No Trace” at all times). Scouts will carry water bottles and may use day packs (or their parent-guardian acts as the beast of burden).  On warmer weather hikes, a small water bottle is not enough for even the smallest Scout.

During winter, prior to departure, we will need to double-check the dress of the Scouts (particularly newer Scouts) to ensure they are properly prepared. If not, we will need to wait for them to go and pick up the forgotten, hat, gloves, mittens, coat, boots, etc.

On all hikes, an adult leader will be assigned to the “tail” position. No one is allowed behind this individual. The Pack hikes as a unit. We start together, break together, etc., with everyone following the same trail. We may allow an older Scout to “Lead”. We will usually work in map reading with them, where we have a route we want to take on the map. It’s up to the Scout to sort out the forks, etc., in the trail. However, they will have their parent-guardian with them also.  We will also introduce the Scouts to geocaching, which involves using a GPS to locate hidden caches in the woods whenever possible.

1)   Very outdoor-oriented (It's why boys joined scouts in the first place!).
2)   Helps ready Scout for Boy Scouts. By their Webelos year, they are very comfortable in outdoor situations.
3)   Recruitment. The hiking stick is a very positive incentive for new Scouts.
4)   Increases participation in the Pack. Scouts look forward to earning patches.
5)   A Scout is Fit!  Boys need more time getting exercise and less time playing video games or watching TV.
6)   Easy to reinforce buddy system along trail, walks to outhouse, etc.
7)   Numerous opportunities to draw in Scouting requirements and lessons.