Local Boy Scouts learn valuable skills at annual camp out

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Hundreds of Boy Scouts from southern Colorado braced the elements this weekend at the annual Freezoree campout at the Air Force Academy.

It seemed only fitting that strong winds and cold temperatures arrived just in time for these scouts to practice their cold weather camping skills.

“We brought a lot of warm weather clothing because we knew that the clouds would be rolling in and it would get pretty chilly out here,” said senior patrol leader Mark Hartlaub. “But we are making things more secure so we don’t have to deal with anything at night like tents blowing away.”

The annual Freezoree includes scout-related competitions where these boys learn first aid, shelter building and how to properly prepare for and survive dangerous situations out in the wild.

“We want them to overall just be as creative as they can, really drive their intellectuality and their creativity,” said cadet second class Evan Papp.

The scouts must rely on one another in order to finish the challenges in front of them, but competition or not, it’s about supporting your brotherhood.

“It’s a lot about everyone working together to help everyone else with many things,” said Hartlaub. “If someone lost their food or forgot their food or they’re cold, you lend a hand by giving them some gear.”

The two-day event not only teaches these scouts lifelong skills and values, but it also prepares them for their next rank of Eagle Scout.

“It’s not just something that you earn, it’s something that you are,” said Papp. “It’s an important challenge that they have to learn to grow to.”

The only requirement for these tough but unique challenges is a sense of adventure.

“I absolutely love being in the outdoors and I like challenging myself,” said Hartlaub.

“It’s a unique skill that we’re starting to lose sight of and this is one of the things that is helping to keep it alive and it’s really good to see them out here doing this,” said Papp.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s