I had an interesting talk with a coworker today. He asked what kind of “Survival Training” we did in Scouting. I told him beyond the Wilderness Survival Merit Badge, we don’t teach our Scouts to Survive, we teach them skills to live in the outdoors.

Surviving suggests that you were not prepared for, as Baden Powell said “Everything”.
Surviving is something that you do when a plane crashes or a you fall off a train in the middle of nowhere.
Skills that allow you to live in the outdoors are more beneficial. Navigation, fire building, cooking, hiking, packing a backpack properly, gathering water, and first aid. These are all living skills not surviving.

As we prepare for our January Camp out we will not be getting ready to survive the cold. We will be preparing to live in the cold. Everything is planned and prepared according to the plan. Menus, snow shoe rentals, packing lists, shake downs and inspections, and of course the camp out itself. To have fun in the wilderness you need to be prepared… not just survive.

Happy Scouting!

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