In memory of Thomas R. Kowalsky, Charter Organization Representative
Members of our Hiking Club on the Sikorsky Estuary Trail in North Stratford.

What is the Hiking Club?

The Pack 172 Hiking Club provides opportunities for our Scouts to get outside and on the trails. Explore the wooded areas we are fortunate to have in and near our town (and in the area). Learn about the outdoors, hiking safety, Leave No Trace ethics and, most importantly, to have fun.

How does the Hiking Club Work?

There are no special applications to fill out. The first time you step out on the trail with Pack 172 or your Den, you’ve become a member. The Hiking Club will hold monthly hikes, most on a weekend morning,  in Stratford’s Roosevelt Forest, Stratford itself, and neighboring towns. The hikes will average 3-4 miles and take about an hour and a half.

For each Pack or Den sponsored hike, your Scout will earn hiking miles. After 30 miles hiked, your Scout will earn a Pack Hiking Club Patch. At 40 miles he or she will earn their walking stick.  At 50 miles hiked, they will earn a 50 Mile emblem to be affixed to their walking stick. There will be additional achievement every 50 miles thereafter.  Once your Scout reaches the 50-mile mark, they will be immortalized in our “50 Miler Club.”

In addition, your Scout will earn a bead, to be attached to their walking stick, for every hike attended. Prior to earning their hiking sticks, hike beads can be worn on the Scouts uniform hung from their left shirt pocket. Different colors will be used for a different length of the hike.  Red beads indicate 2 miles, green beads indicate 3 miles, orange beads indicate 4 miles, and white beads indicate hikes of 5 or more miles.  Hikes not ending in even mileage will be rounded up to the next mile.

How much does it cost?

To cover a portion of the cost, we will ask for a $1.00 donation before each hike.  This $1 donation will be kept solely to offset the cost of your scouts walking stick and club patches.

Who can come along?

We encourage everyone in the family who is comfortable hiking the distances in the respective hike to join the fun!  We also encourage Scouts to invite friends along to experience this aspect of Scouting.  Pets are allowed at locations that allow them but must be properly attended to.  Parents are invited to hike with us but as long as we can maintain two deep leadership, parents may stay behind at the trailhead.

Hiking Doesn’t Stop With the Pack

While only miles hiked as part of a Hiking Club Scheduled event can be used to earn the walking stick, 50-mile emblem and subsequent awards; scouts are free to adorn and customize their walking stick.  Some locations, such as National Parks, provide park specific emblems for walking sticks. These along with the pack achievements can help create a record of hiking achievements your Scout can be proud of.

What to bring

Most important is that your scout has proper shoes, good socks, and a full water bottle.  These items are required to hike with the Club (and the pack). We also ask that you wear your Class B shirt and Scout Hat. We recommend a small backpack with a basic first aid kit, a small healthy snack or two and it will serve as a place to hold a water bottle.  Check out our Pre-Hike checklist here for a great list of what to bring.

What not to bring

Please leave all video games, toys, and electronic devices at home.  In addition, when packing your Scout snacks for the trail, please refrain from sending along soda and candy.

Weather and Cancellations

We will abide by the BSA Safe Scouting policies regarding weather. In cases of lightning, severe cold or other dangerous weather, hikes will be canceled or rescheduled. In all other cases, even rain and snow, we will be enjoying the outdoors!  In the event of a cancellation, I will do my best to notify everyone, but the best place to check is both our Facebook Page and this Hiking Club Page.

Hike Tracking

You can view all of your child’s hikes by looking at Scout Book under “Your Childs Name”s hiking Log.

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