Showing posts from 2016

Saturday - Gone to Texas

Saturday, July 2nd, 2016

If Friday is bittersweet at Camp Geiger, Saturday is more so.

Our Scouts deserve recognition and praise for the effective, efficient, and enthusiastic manner in which they struck camp this morning.

Our Scoutmaster, Steve Kral, made the rounds to awaken everyone starting about 5:45 this morning in order that we might have time to get all our gear packed and loaded ahead of the oncoming rain storm. Your correspondent heard no complaints, though many Scouts and Scouters enjoyed but four or five hours sleep owing to the events of the night before. Sleeping bags and pads were rolled up, cots folded, and foot lockers packed in good time, if not, perhaps, with all possible care.

Loading the truck is always a team effort and the need for speed made that fact even more important than it normally is this morning. It seemed that everyone pitched in, from our newest First Years to our longest-serving Scouters. Foot lockers were loaded first, and this is when you see why we …

Friday - The End Draws Nigh

Friday, July 1st, 2016

Where has the time gone?

Fridays at  Geiger are bittersweet. The prospect of home and one's own bed is sweet, anticipating leaving camp is not. For those who have not yet had the opportunity to spend a week at this exemplary Boy Scout facility, its appeal is hard to explain. Sleeping accommodations are somewhat Spartan, the food, while decent is nevertheless camp food, and going anywhere involves climbing hills, lots of hills. And yet, these very features make Geiger special.

For example, the prospect of a half-mile walk to get to breakfast might not fill everyone with joy but it is  a commonplace of the Geiger experience. To get from our campsite, Sioux Lookout, to the dining hall, one goes via "Silver Eagle Trail." This broad footpath makes truth of those old stories about walking uphill - both ways!

Uphill, BOTH ways!

From Sioux Lookout, one descends to the nearby Flaming Crow trading post. Just beyond that is the Silver Eagle trailhead. A simpl…

Thursday - Tapping Fire!

Thursday, June 30th, 2016

Tapping Fire
Today’s blog is a bit delayed. Your correspondent was needed elsewhere this AM as the rifle range was short a Range Safety Officer. Mr. Hatter also served in this capacity once he, Mr. Kral, Mr. Bryant, and Mrs. Harris had helped pull pork for our Friday night al fresco barbecue. In the interests of time, some of the descriptions of ceremonies that follows appeared previously.

Thursday was a fantastic day for the Tribe of Mic-O-Say and for Troop 451.

For many, perhaps all, at Camp Geiger, the high point of the week comes Thursday evening with the Tapping Fire. This ceremony is where candidates for membership in the Tribe are publicly acknowledged. Mic-O-Say is the honor camping society of Camp Geiger. Its origins go back to the 1920s, a time when many honor camping societies stressing Native American themes came into being. Most of these were later subsumed within the Order of the Arrow, to become part of Scouting’s national honor camping societ…

Wednesday - is it here ALREADY?

Wednesday, June 29th, 2016
Another day, another early dawn and another lovely sunrise. It is great to be outdoors on a beautiful Missouri morning in June. The day is quiet then, before the boys awaken, and the peaceful moments offer a chance to reflect. It is well to keep in mind that summer camp is all about the boys – we adults are here to ensure that they have a successful, enjoyable experience. The fact that we enjoy it too is pure lagniappe.
The morning was rather cool – enough so that jackets or sweatshirts were comfortable. The breeze that brought the change in temperature was the harbinger of oncoming rain but not before breakfast.
The morning meal was, of course, preceded by the raising of the flags and once again, our Scouts proudly served as color guard to raise the Texas colors once Old Glory had been hoisted by the Camp Staff color guard. Our troop earned the privilege of the recognition by keeping a clean, ship-shape campsite that garnered top marks in Tuesday’s camp ins…

Tuesday - Another Great and Good Day!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Gettin' Up Time

In the cool hour of dawn, it is hard to recall the Amazonian heat and humidity of the day before. The sky begins to lighten shortly after 5:00 AM and the sun is up just before 6:00. The temperature is a welcome respite.

In keeping with the dawn’s early light, the camp stirs early too. Even before it is light enough to see the ground underfoot, folks are up and heading to the storm shelter/wash house in hopes of enjoying a warm shower without a wait. The storm shelters deserve a digression here.

Storm Shelters
Owing to the potential for severe thunderstorms and tornadoes, the good folks of the Pony Express Council of the BSA and Camp Geiger determined that each campsite needed a safe, tornado-resistant refuge. Scouting is an outdoor program and being in the outdoors entails, inescapably, some degree of risk. That does not preclude prudent precautions, however, and these shelters are just that. They are an effective means of reducing some of t…