Tag Archives: Ladder race

Campcraft Activities, Patrol Challenges, and Troopwide Games

Scout Meeting Activities

Related to Scout Pioneering are a variety of campcraft challenges that can be incorporated into the troop meeting agenda. A relevant upside is, these activities require putting skills into action that were gained during instructional sessions. Appropriately, these skills come into play in a way that is challenging and fun.

Link to: Flagpole Race
A Fun Interpatrol Activity: Nothing Succeeds like Success!

Of course, campcraft encompasses more than just Pioneering, though Pioneering is often central to the rewarding experience inherent in Scouting’s outdoor program. The campcraft challenges in this post also include activities related to general knotting, woods tools, fire building, navigation, and some first aid Scout skills too.

Healthy competition between patrols can have a positive outcome when handled in the right spirit. Naturally, when patrol makeup is homogenous, there’s more of a level playing field. But, when patrols are organized by age, to compensate for the difference in skill levels, certain handicaps might be introduced. In this instance or when individual patrol attendance is disproportionate, dividing the troop into equal crews is also always a practical approach.

Scoring and points are arbitrary—no hard, fast rule. Keeping track of patrol points for these activities (and awarding points for various other criteria) can be adopted and contribute towards patrol spirit. But, the presentation of the activities themselves carry their own rewards translating into involvement, enthusiasm, and fun.


Scout Meeting Challenge: Indoor Ladder Race

The square lashing is the basic type of lashing for most pioneering projects. The more a Scout ties them, the more they become like second nature. That means, when the tying of an efficient and tight square lashing is “no sweat,” building a pioneering structure will be easier and more successful. This, of course, makes the experience more fun.

Think about it. The basic and easy-to-build Double A-frame Monkey Bridge depends upon 10 to 14 tight square lashings.  A simple Single Lock Bridge with planks on the walkways needs 48.

Almost ready to climb!

So, to assure the Scouts are ready and able to tackle projects that are challenging, fun, and rewarding, they need to feel confident and happy they can easily tie tight square lashings.

Touching the ceiling!

This challenge is very simple, but, it’s fun, and requires each patrol to tie eight tight square lashings. It’s great for new Scouts and a useful team-building activity and practice session “disguised” as a fun, fast-paced interpatrol competition.

Materials for Each Patrol:

  • two 8-foot x 4-inch spars
  • four 3-foot x 2-inch ladder rungs
  • eight 15-foot x 1/4-inch lashing ropes

Method: with the above materials, each patrol will lash together a ladder with four rungs, spacing the rungs FROM THE BOTTOM ABOUT ONE FOOT APART, using eight square lashings. When sturdy, the whole patrol will stand the ladder up and take turns climbing to the top.

Indoor Ladder Race
6-foot Ladder Legs for Lower Ceilings

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