United States of America: Pack 705, Texas
This was Pack 705’s first time participating in JOTT and we had a blast. The weather was a bit muggy, but at least the rain held off. All in all a great day filled with a lot of fun.
Our Scouts did their hike at Palestine Park/Texas State Railroad Palestine Depot combined with a nature scavenger hunt and some JOTT themed letterboxing. The scavenger hunt had them searching along the trail and identifying dogwood, oak, cedar, pine, and ash trees as well as wildflowers. The letterboxing involved finding boxes that held stamps for each of the Cub Scout ranks, the World Crest and a stamp representing JOTT itself. But that isn’t where the fun ended.
We then participated in a pack hot dog roast and followed that up with s’mores. Some free time to explore and do whatever you like lead my son to the pond for some fishing. He did pretty well too. Some of us even camped out at the park.
Our Pack would like to send our thanks to all the organizers of JOTT. We hope to be involved next year as well.
—Jim Arceneaux, Wolf Den Leader
Australia: 1st St. Marys Scout Group, Sydney
1st St. Marys Scout Group set out at 2:00 PM yesterday for a 5 kilometre nature walk around Castelreagh Nature Reserve situated a few minutes drive to the north east of Penrith.
Having Joey Scouts with us meant we had to ensure the walk was well within their capabilities and sadly our Scouts all being relatively young have not had a lot of bush walking experience. So the nature walk catered well for all our sections on the day and was well suited to all the kids involved. We stopped after an hour for a well deserved break. After some biscuits and water the 5 Joeys, 11 Cubs, and 4 Scouts were refreshed and ready to push on.
Our kids enjoyed being out amongst the bush, walking well prepared fire trails (remembering to cater for the Joey Scouts needs) seeing many birds, lots of trees, and sadly a green tree frog that had been seriously injured.
After 2 hours and 20 minutes of hiking we made back to our point of origin. The kids refuelled with some icy cold cans of drink, veggies (well crisp chips) and in keeping with Scouting traditions, a slab a chocolate cake before the mums and dads took home their very excited but very weary kids.
The walk was a relatively easy one with reasonably flat topography, but it was a good one to introduce many from our group to “bush walking”, which I am sure will help to kick of their interest in getting out and about in our wonderful bushland. Isn’t that what Scouting is all about?
We also had several parents and siblings join in the walk to make for a much more interesting day (the more the merrier).
—Rodney Lean (Kanga), JSL, 1st St Marys Scout Group, Greater Western Sydney Region
Australia: Balgownie Cub Scouts
We had our combined JOTT and pre-Mothers Day Hike last Saturday. Weather was glorious. We had over 78 attendees (kept losing count), with around 12 Joeys, 30 Cubs, and 36 Mums or so we think!
We had pre-cooked 10 dozen scones, heaps of cream, jam, and boiled up litres of water on site at Brokers Nose which overlooks Wollongong.
The Cubs and Joeys took their Mums tea/coffee/scone order and had to serve them and look after them for Mothers Day.
The hike in and out as around 5 km, most of the Mums were OK. A couple struggled, but that was on the way back with a couple of scones on board!
Australia: Waylen Bay Sea Scouts, Perth
An enthusiastic group of 30 Cubs, Scouts, Leaders, and parents from 1st Waylen Bay Sea Scouts braved the wet conditions and took part in their first JOTT hike by walking part of the John Forrest Heritage Trail just east of Perth in Western Australia. Along the 8 km walk we viewed the flora and fauna and rediscovered some of the old historical railway line and tunnel that was built in 1895 and closed in 1966. It was the only railway tunnel ever built in Western Australia. The weather turned out fine and a great day was had by all. We look forward to JOTT in 2009.
—Bruce Pilgrim, SL, Waylen Bay Sea Scouts