Camping in the Cub Scout Adventure Program

In the Cub Scout program, there is an emphasis on camping. My friend, Scouter Adam, reviewed the camping requirements on his blog and compiled the list for us.  Another friend, Robert the Popcorn Guy, created this awesome Camping for Cubs chart using Adam’s information.  Both Adam and Robert said that I could share their information with the Cub Scout Ideas readers.

You’ll find that going on a pack camp out is a requirement to earn your rank badge for Wolf, Bear and Arrow of Light dens. The only exception is for those packs whose charter organization doesn’t allow pack camping.

What does this mean? Simply, our Cub Scouts need to camp to earn their rank.  I believe it’s important to make sure your parents and leaders understand this.

In our pack, we usually plan two camp outs during the school year–one in the fall and one in the spring.  Of course, that’s the prime time for sports as well. Here’s our work-around so that our boys can still camp and participate in their sports.

First, we try to find a campground that is within an hour’s drive or so.  This allows our boys to compete in their sporting events during the morning and still be able to get to our campground to camp by late afternoon.

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Second, we usually reserve our camping area for both Friday and Saturday night, but our official camp out activities don’t start until around 3 pm on Saturday.  Families who can camp both nights are welcome to pitch their tents on Friday.  Or the family can come out earlier on Saturday.  This gives them an opportunity to enjoy time together before the official festivities begin.  By being flexible, we have more boys who can participate in our pack camp outs.

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Robert’s Chart

I encourage you to download Robert’s chart to share with your pack leaders and parents so that you can  brainstorm ways to ensure all of your Cub Scouts camp out at least once during the year.

Comment below to share your thoughts and ideas on how we can get all of our boys around that camp out campfire!

A very big thank you goes out to Scouter Adam and Robert, the Popcorn Guy for compiling this information and allowing me to share it with my readers!

Yours in Scouting,

P.S. You might find these resources handy for your campout.  They are lists of things you can easily do on your camping trip without equipment.

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10 thoughts on “Camping in the Cub Scout Adventure Program

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  2. Tammy

    Thank you! This is the perfect type of information I need as CC so I can pass along to leaders before our first camping trip. I hope to see more themed charts like this.

    1. Sherry Post author

      Tom, you are technically correct. There is also no such thing as a “Webelos 2” den, yet many, many packs call them that to distinguish between first year Webelos dens and second year Webelos dens. I’m a member of a Facebook group for people who attended the Cub Scout training at Philmont last summer, so I asked them. Here are some of the answers I got:

      “Many will be a named den by that point; some may use a den numeral. Some will call them Webelos II, Some will call them AOL dens. Whatever works for a pack is what they should do.”

      “It was explained to us at PTC that Arrow Of Light is its own rank just like Tiger, Wolf, Bear, and Webelos. With that in mind, that seems that they cannot be called Webelos in any way…you would not call a Wolf a Tiger or a Bear; these are all mutually exclusive ranks. Now I know many will continue to call them Webelos II. I, however, have been working to shift the thought away from that to calling them Arrow Of Light. I do agree that by this point many will have a name rather than simply being a Den number and as such they can more easily be referred to as patrol.”

      “We were Webelos II but now we are Arrows! The boys seem to like being Arrows.”

      So, I think this answer is the right one: Whatever works for your pack is what you should do.

      Thanks for reading!

      1. Tom McFadden

        TIgers use Tiger handbooks, wear Tiger Neckerchiefs, Slides, Belt buckles, and earn Tiger adventures
        Wolfs use Wolf handbooks, wear Wolfs Neckerchiefs, Slides, Belt buckles, and earn wolf adventures
        Bears use Bear handbooks, wear Bear Neckerchiefs, Slides, Belt buckles, and earn Bear adventures
        4th and 5th Grade scouts use a WEBELOS handbook, wear WEBELOS neckerchiefs, slides, belt buckles, and earn WEBELOS adventures.
        There is no Arrow of light handbook, neckerchiefs, slides, or belt buckles, or Adventures.

        TIgers, Wolfs, and Bears, cannot earn adventures for former or future ranks. 4th grade WEBELOS can earn Arrow of Light required adventures, and 5th grade WEBELOS can earn Webelos required adventures. Therefore 4th and 5th graders must be in the same program level.

        Then theres official BSA publications like the New Program FAQ which can be found here

        Page 6 question 3:
        Q: Are boys in the fifth grade referred to as Arrow of Light Scouts?
        A: Boys who are earning the Webelos and Arrow of Light ranks are Webelos Scouts and are members of Webelos dens.

        There is no BSA publication that specifically states that Webelos scouts are not Webelos 2 during their second year. There are several that do say there is no such thing as an Arrow of Light Den.

        1. Sherry Post author

          Thank you for your comments, Tom! I appreciate you sharing this information with my readers.

          As I mentioned in my last comment, you are technically correct–5th grade boys are called Webelos and are members of Webelos dens. There are many places, however, where Arrow of Light is called a rank. In this situation, I was using “den” and “rank” interchangeably, as I do often.

          However, people will want a way of distinguishing between the two groups. Given the response I received in our Facebook group from one of the primary designers of the new program, I believe that if a pack decides to call their second year Webelos den “Arrow of Light,” they are not going against the spirit of the new program.

          If that pack decided that they were going to require that a 5th grade boy earn the Webelos rank prior to earning his Arrow of Light rank, that is absolutely going against the spirit of the program.

          I suspect that if we could find an FAQ document from 1986 when the Webelos program expanded to two years, there would be an answer that says they’re Webelos, not Webelos 1 and Webelos 2. 🙂

          I do want to clarify a couple of things. There are four required Arrow of Light-specific requirements. You had mentioned that there aren’t any. Also, based on the first question on page 4 of the FAQ, I don’t think 4th graders should be working on AoL required adventures until after they have earned their Webelos rank.

          In the end, we are charged with doing what is best for the boys. If your pack doesn’t feel comfortable calling second year Webelos anything except “Webelos,” then that is absolutely what you should do. I respect your opinion.

          If other packs made a different decision, I respect their opinion too.

          Thank you for this discussion! It’s my hope that people will read both of our perspectives and make the right decision for their pack.

  3. Holly

    Thank you! My son crossed over last year so I never learned the new program requirements. However, our Pack is struggling due to a huge turnover of leadership (one of the pitfalls of a military Pack), and I’m stepping in to help provide continuity and a source of info. This helps me help them!

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