We have a meeting Tuesday March 3 at 7:00 p.m. at the BFCC. According to the calendar, this will be a regular meeting. I will talk with Jack about this at the Chili Supper.
I have received a response to my e-mail about a Troop outdoor event for March. The suggestion was to switch the dinosaur tracks trip from May to March because of the weather--the tracks will be hot in May. At the meeting Tuesday we need to nail this down. I am willing to do any of the following: (1) March 6, 7, 8 camp and hike either at the tracks or at Vogel Canyon, or (2) March 20, 21, 22 and hike either of the same trails. A third possibility, though further away and probably the most interesting given the time of year, is Picture Canyon.
Here is information about the possibilities:
Dinosaur tracks: We have made this a regular on the hiking circuit. This is a 12.5 mile hike to a great area with many tracks, some rock art, some ruins from the late 1800's and into the early 1900's. This qualifies as a 10 mile hike for the Hiking merit badge. If we are to take this hike, we need to decide whether this is wise, given that we have already set this hike up for May.
Vogel Canyon: This is near the dinosaur tracks--about 10 miles away--and easier to get to than the tracks. It has a variety of rock art, a portion of a Barlow and Sanderson Mail Stage Line, and the remains of a stagecoach stop. This is a wonderful hike. It is short--about 2.25 miles with an option to hike a little further on a different portion of the stagecoach road. The Troop went on this hike about 4 years ago.
Picture Canyon: This is also part of the Comanche National Grassland, but rather than near La Junta (as are the other 2 hikes) it is near Springfield, Colorado, and we can put our hands through the fence and touch Oklahoma. As Dave Wallace informed me, I take the Troop on these long drives to hike. It is a long drive to get there, but fun. This hike is about 4 miles, but the last time we went, we took an option to make it 10 miles--if my memory is correct. There is lots of rock art, it is in a wonderful setting, and it is just interesting. There is Crack Cave, which has art work inside that happens to be illuminated during the equinox twice each year. I believe that March 20 is the equinox this year, so the cave probably will be open on Saturday the 21. If it is, we will have plenty of company early Saturday, as the Grasslands opens a portion of the trail to cars on that weekend just so people can see the solar phenomenon. The cars are only in a limited area, and we will have the trail to ourselves after sunrise. The cave is interesting, but I must admit, many of the scouts would rather do anything than get up early to see rock art illuminated by the sun on the equinox. Still, this is one of only a few places in the country where one can see this kind of event. We read about this in various parts of the world. We have this opportunity in our back yard.
I have focused on these 3 hikes because they are in an area that should be wonderful to hike in at this time of year and they are wonderful hikes.
If we are to go next weekend, we are going to have to organize the trip quickly.