Eagle Scout Peak, Emerald City, Eagle Scouts, Cowardly Lion, Scarecrow, Tin Man, the Wicked Witch of the West, Big Arroyo, Boy Scouts of America, National Park Service, commemorative patch, Eagle Scout, Dorothy, Life Scouts, The Mountaineers Books, BSA, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, Dennis Crockett, Dorothy and Toto, Wicked Witch, The Wizard of Oz, subalpine meadow, Timber Gap, Kings Canyon National Parks, Black Rock Pass, Kings Canyon National Parks Wilderness Office, granite slabs, Major Frederick Russell Burnham, Places Kansas Yellow Brick Road Oz, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Day, snow levels, Judy Garland as Dorothy
1910-2010 BSA CENTENNIAL EAGLE SCOUT PEAK CLIMB Updated January 1, 2011 HISTORY AND BACKGROUND In 2006, five Orange County
Council Eagle Scouts measured the most accurate to date elevation, latitude and longitude of Eagle Scout Peak in the wilderness of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
s. The Eagle Scouts used a $15,000 donated Trimble R8 GPS Receiver, and the new measurements are printed in the 2009 Third Edition of Secor, RJ: The High Sierra: Peaks~Passes~Trails, The Mountaineers Books, Seattle, WA
and will soon become the official U.S. Geodetic Survey reading. The data appears on the new in 2008 High Adventure Award entitled EAGLE SCOUT PEAK (which is a two patch award...AKA a "two-fer"), available to be earned by Scouts, Venturers and Scouters. To view the award and requirements, visit the High Adventure team website
, http://hat.ocbsa.org, click on AWARDS, then SCOUT HIGH ADVENTURE AWARD BOOK, then ORANGE COUNTY (the awards are on the last pages for Orange County). The 4 1/2 inch patch is a replica of the bronze GPS Control Point with stem benchmark that was forged and is on public display in the Giant Forest Museum of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. The benchmark was not set in rock on the summit of Eagle Scout Peak to observe "Leave No Trace", a policy observed by both BSA and the National Park Service
. The 3 inch patch with button loop is designed for uniform wear. successful completion
of the requirements earns both patches. An article about this project was published in the June, 2007 issue of Point of Beginning, the most respected journal for the geodesy and surveying industry in the United State
s, http://.pobonline.com Archive of Past Issues). SO WHAT DID WE DO THUS FAR IN 2010 AND WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO IN 2011? Our goal in 2010 was to have 100 Eagle Scouts (youth and adult...remember...once an Eagle Scout, always an Eagle Scout) and "near Eagle Scouts" (Life Scouts almost there) climb to the summit of Eagle Scout Peak to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the Boy Scouts
of America. Well...I am pleased to report that about 130 Eagles and near Eagles made it to the summit in 2010...give or take...and earned the 1910-2010 BSA CENTENNIAL EAGLE SCOUT PEAK CLIMB numbered commemorative patch. Units came from all across this greatest nation on God's green earth (the farthest Scouting unit was from New Jersey
). Thus, we exceeded our expectations despite the lingering snow through the middle of July causing a number of units to cancel their Eagle Scout Peak plans. So what about that lingering snow and our plans for 2011? Well...because a number of units could not reschedule their treks last summer to later in the season to avoid the high snow, we are going to extend the 1910-2010 BSA CENTENNIAL EAGLE SCOUT PEAK CLIMB through the summer of 2011...that means...yes...drum roll, please...we are making more numbered commemorative patches for Scouts and Eagle Scouts to earn. And...thinking about it, I think that all Scouts who climb Eagle Scout Peak...no matter what rank...should have an opportunity to earn not only the two regular 4 Ѕ and 3 inch Eagle Scout Peak patches, but also the third commemorative patch. Therefore, I have revised the SCOUT/SCOUTER REQUIREMENTS AND TREKKING QUALIFICATIONS from 2010...see below and read on! SO WHY ARE WE DOING THIS? Well...because it's there (Eagle Scout Peak)...to paraphrase British Climber George Mallory in 1924 when asked why he wanted to summit 29,035 foot Mt. Everest. And, after all, it is the 100th Anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America. OK...left this paragraph in here from 2010 because it reads real cool...you know...the Sir George Mallory quote.
1910-2010 BSA CENTENNIAL EAGLE SCOUT PEAK CLIMB NUMBERED COMMEMORATIVE PATCH...OF COURSE!!! OK...here they are...pictured are the two regular patches that are available now, in the future and retroactive to July 15, 1926 for all past Scouts and Scouters who will or have stood on the summit of Eagle Scout Peak. Why July 15, 1926...that was the recorded first ascent by famous Sierra mountaineer Francis P. Farquhar and California Central Valley Eagle Scouts Frederick Armstrong, Eugene Howell and Coe Swift? Also pictured are #001 and #100 (OK...you knew I was going to hang on to those) of the numbered commemorative patches. Thus far, we have done #s 001 through 200 and we shall see how it goes by the end of the 2011 summer...we will make more numbered commemorative patches as needed and all eligible Eagle Scout Peak summiteers will get one...remember we have given out about 130 so far as of summers end 2010. Once the winter of 2011-2012 hits, that's it for the commemorative patch...no more will be made and their value on EBAY starts climbing...but I figure no Scout or Scouter who earns one will ever part with it.
All the awards are available at the Santa Ana Scout Shop (Orange County Council
, CA)...William Lyons Homes Center for Scouting...1121 East Dyer Road...Santa Ana...CA...(714) 979-4554...or order through your home Council's Scout Store from Santa Ana. Just fill out the High Adventure Awards Application form on this website. And...yes...you do have to pay for them, but they are fairly cheap...the 3 inch regular button loop patch is $2.85 and the 4 Ѕ inch regular patch is $2.75 (not to scale in the above picture)...and about $5.00 for the numbered commemorative patch. Of course, Scouting units don't forget that tour permit `cause you need it (the number) to order the awards. Now...for all adult Eagles out there climbing with just your adult buddies and no youth...don't worry about the tour permit. SCOUT/SCOUTER REQUIREMENTS AND TREKKING QUALIFICATIONS FOR THE 1910-2010 BSA EAGLE SCOUT PEAK CLIMB COMMEMORATIVE PATCH There are only two Scout/Scouter requirements...summit 12,035.7 foot Eagle Scout Peak in the Sequoia wilderness in the summer of 2011 (just like they all did in 2010) and comply with all National Park Service regulations for organized groups. All current Eagle Scouts (youth and adult...again...once an Eagle Scout, always an Eagle Scout), as well as all registered Scouts (no matter the rank), are eligible to earn the 1910-2010 BSA EAGLE SCOUT PEAK CLIMB COMMEMORATIVE PATCH in addition to the regular 3 inch button loop and 4 Ѕ inch Eagle Scout Peak patches...so it's a "three-fer". And...let's make it retroactive to 2010...lower rank Scouts who climbed last year...get yourself a numbered commemorative patch. Non-Eagle Scout Scouters who climb Eagle Scout Peak are eligible (as for all High Adventure Awards) to earn the regular 3 inch button loop and 4-1/2 inch Eagle Scout Peak patches...a "two-fer". The Eagle Scout Peak patches are earned for climbing Eagle Scout Peak and are earned in addition to any other High Adventure Award(s) earned for the trek. For example, units trekking from Crescent Meadow to Mineral King (and climbing Eagle Scout Peak along the way) earn the High Sierra Trail and Giant Forest to Mineral King segment High Adventure Award http://hat.ocbsa.org again. As far as trekking qualifications go, climbing Eagle Scout Peak is for units that are experienced in longterm Sierra trekking such as the classic Sierra 50-miler. Good preparation and training in backpacking is essential throughout the 2010-2011 Scouting year...read on and see below! BLING!!!...A PEAKBAGGER BANNER FOR PHOTO OPS
OK...is it beeeuutiful or what!!!...a custom peakbagger banner for photo ops on the summit. The banner is there now on the summit of Eagle Scout Peak and it will be there throughout about late July of the 2011 summer. That's when I promised the National Park Service I would haul it out. Look for it inside a 2 inch diameter by 2 foot length capped section of black PVC pipe with an "I love my Eagle Scout" bumper sticker on it... it is hidden just below and east of the summit block...should be easy to find. Also up there (near the PVC pipe) is a special summit register with pens (black Pelican Case) so that Scouts, Venturers and Scouters can sign and make comments...again, I will haul this out with the banner. Not sure what I will do with the peakbagger banner and the summit register when this adventure is all done, but I'll come up with something...maybe the National Park Service will put the summit register in the display case alongside the Eagle Scout Peak bronze benchmark already in the Giant Forest Museum...that would be cool. IN MEMORIAM FOR A DECEASED EAGLE SCOUT A Scoutmaster from a brother troop...and I apologize as I can't remember who you are...suggested this idea to me and I think this is really cool. Any able bodied hiker (BSA registration not required) out there who can make this trek in honor of an Eagle Scout who has left this earth is welcome to do so and earn the three patches. Then, that hiker can present the awards to the family of the deceased Eagle Scout (may I suggest mounting and framing the awards with matting and suitable for display in the home...you get the idea). What a wonderful and heartwarming way to honor the memory of an Eagle Scout who is no longer with us. SO HOW DID WE DO IT IN 2010 AND HOW ARE WE GOING TO IT AGAIN IN 2011? Scouting units will plan their treks to Eagle Scout Peak in the summer of 2011 as they are accustomed. Scouts and Venturers should be used to multi-day backpacking...this is not a first time Sierra trek. Eagle Scout Peak is about 3 days into the Sequoia Backcountry and is about in the middle of the 7.5 minute topographic map entitled "Triple Divide Peak". As some trek examples and so that units can get an idea of what is involved, my home troop's trek info sheets for 2005, 2006 and 2010 are printed below. As you will see by reading the trek info sheets, this is a trek for experienced units. There are lots of possibilities in addition to the above: (1) an in and out trek from Crescent Meadow in Sequoia; or (2) in at Crescent Meadow and exit at Mineral King (via either Black Rock Pass, Sawtooth Pass, or Franklin Pass), Whitney Portal or New Army Pass. And...the last mile or so to the summit of Eagle Scout Peak is a Class 2 scramble...but doable as long as there is not too much snow...so mid July to August is the best time. The summit is airy...drops down about 1300 feet on three sides of the summit block. Ropes and climbing hardware not necessary...but units might want to carry a rope for emergency use. The recommended maps to study and carry on the trek are the USGS 7.5 minute topographic map "Triple Divide Peak" and the Tom Harrison Map "Mineral King Trail Map" (www.tomharrisonmaps.com). WILDERNESS PERMITS Wilderness Permit Reservation Instructions for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks can be found at www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/wilderness.htm. The phone number
for the Wilderness Office is 559565-3766. Applications will be accepted by mail and fax starting March 1, 2010...get your application in early...preferably March 1. Leave No Trace camping info can be found at www.wilderness.net and go to www.wilderness.nps.gov to view a Leave No Trace Video.
REFERENCES 1. Morey K, White M et. Al.: Sierra South, EIGHTH EDITION
. Wilderness Press, Berkeley, CA
2001. 2. Secor RJ: The High Sierra: Peaks~Passes~Trails, Third Edition. The Mountaineers Books, Seattle, WA, 2009. MY HOME TROOPS 636 AND 1210...2005, 2006 AND 2010 EAGLE SCOUT PEAK TREK INFO SHEETS BOY SCOUT TROOP 636 SIERRA "EAGLE SCOUT PEAK" BACKPACK Crescent Meadows to Shepherd Pass Sunday, July 17 to Tuesday, July 26, 2005 Directions to the trailhead: The drive-up day will be Sunday, July 17. The best route is to take Interstate 5 north to Highway 99 (junction to Bakersfield). Continue on Highway 99 and junction with Highway 198 just west of Visalia. Go east on Highway 198 through Visalia and Three Rivers. Continue northeast on 198 to Lodgepole, passing Giant Forest, approximately 63 miles. Go about 2 miles south and east of Giant Forest on a road running past Moro Rock to the road's end at the Crescent Meadow trailhead. We will plan to stay in a motel in Three Rivers or the vicinity Sunday evening, July 17. Our pick-up day will be Tuesday, July 26. We will come out at the Symmes Creek (Shepherd Pass) Trailhead in the Eastern Sierra. The best route is to take the 241 Toll Road north: get on the 91 Freeway and go east (towards Riverside). From the 91 Freeway, go north on Interstate 15. Junction with Highway 395 and go north through Kramer Junction, Lone Pine to Independence. In Independence, turn left and go west on Market Street (set your odometer at 0.0 miles). Outside of town, Market Street becomes Onion Valley Road. At 4.4 miles, turn left (south) on Foothill Road (dirt). At 5.6 miles, the road forks. Follow the right (west) fork. You will pass a sign reading "SHEPHERDS PASS TRAILHEAD". At 7.2 miles, cross a small creekbed, near a corral. At 7.6 miles, there is a fork in the road. . .go right (there is a small "HIKER" sign here). At 8.2 miles, there is a fork in the road . . . go right. At 9.2 miles, the road ends at Symmes Creek (Shepherd Pass) Trailhead (no facilities). Backpack itinerary: Trip mileage per day, as well as layover days, can deviate from the following approximate schedule. Monday, July 18: We will drive to the starting trailhead at Crescent Meadow (6,850 ft.), take off and backpack 11.1 miles to Bearpaw Meadow (7,820 ft.), where we will camp for the night. Tuesday, July 19: Backpack to Nine Lake Basin (10.725 ft.), up and over Kaweah Gap (10,700 ft.), approximately 9 miles. The last mile or so is cross-country. Wednesday, July 20: From our base camp in Nine Lake Basin, dayhike and bag Eagle Scout Peak (12,040 ft.), all Class 2 and approximately 6 miles round trip. Thursday, July 21: First, up and over difficult Class 2 Pant's Pass (12,000 ft.), about 1.2 miles. . .then another 5 miles downhill to Gallats Lake (10,040 ft.), where we will camp for the night. Friday, July 22: Backpack downhill to Junction Meadow (8,080 ft.), approximately 6 miles, then on to the trail junction of the John Muir
Trail and Wallace Creek (10,405 ft.), another 5 miles and camp for the night.
Saturday, July 23: Backpack to Wallace Lake (11,450 ft.), cross-country and approximately 4 miles. . .camp for the night. Sunday, July 24: Layover day at Wallace Lake and fish for lunker Golden Trout. Monday, July 25: Backpack through Wright Lakes cross-country to Shepherd Pass (12,025 ft.), approximately 7 miles, then 2 more miles downhill to Anvil Camp (10,000 ft.). An option would be to camp near Shepherd Pass. Tuesday, July 26: Backpack down to the Symmes Creek Trailhead (6,250 ft.), 7.5 miles from Anvil Camp. . .meet our pick up crew and drive home. On the Road Meals: Remember that Scouts will need travel money for the car trip up (lunch and dinner) and breakfast for Monday morning, July 18. Bring money for burgers at the Frosty Chalet in Lone Pine for the ride home, July 26. Backpack checklist: Refer to the "Backpack Equipment Checklist for Long-Term Sierra Treks", and "Suggested fishing gear
for Long-Term Sierra Treks", both prepared by Assistant Scoutmaster Crockett. BOY SCOUT TROOPS 636 AND 1210 SIERRA "EAGLE SCOUT PEAK" BACKPACK National Geodetic Survey/National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration Project Saturday, July 29 to Thursday August 3, 2006 Directions to the trailhead: The drive-up day will be Saturday, July 29. The best route is to take Interstate 5 north to Highway 99 (junction to Bakersfield). Continue on Highway 99 and junction with Highway 198 just west of Visalia. Go east on Highway 198 through Visalia to Three Rivers. We will stay Saturday night in a motel in Three Rivers. On Sunday morning, up early, eat breakfast and take-off northeast on Highway 198 to Lodgepole, passing Giant Forest, approximately 63 miles. Go about 2 miles south and east of Giant Forest on a road running past Moro Rock to the road's end at the Crescent Meadow trailhead parking lot. Backpack itinerary: Trip mileage per day, as well as layover days, can deviate from the following approximate schedule. Sunday, July 30: We will drive to the starting trailhead at Crescent Meadow (6,850 ft.), take off and backpack 11.1 miles to Bearpaw Meadow (7,820 ft.) first. Then, 1.6 miles down to Lone Pine Creek (7,400 ft.) and another 2.5 miles to Hamilton Lakes (8,235 ft.), where we will camp for the night. Total mileage: 15.2 miles. Monday, July 31 to Wednesday, August 2: Backpack to Nine Lakes Basin (10,400 ft.), up and over Kaweah Gap (10,700 ft.), approximately 4.5 miles. We will camp at the 10,700 foot level in Nine Lakes Basin just west of the Big Arroyo and about one mile due east of Eagle Scout Peak (~ 12,040 ft.). Then, we climb Eagle Scout Peak (Class 2), summit and set up the Trimble R8 GPS Receiver with a Zephyr Geodetic Tripod Antenna on the summit block. Two Scouts (summit crew) will bivouac Tuesday night, August 1 on the summit, while the rest of us (support crew) return to our camp in Nine Lakes Basin. The summit crew and the support crew will be in constant radio contact.
The Trimble R8 stays on the summit block Monday evening, all day Tuesday, August 1 and into the morning of Wednesday, August 2 tracking multiple satellite passings. A new Scout team will bivouac on the summit Tuesday evening, disassemble the Trimble R8 on Wednesday morning and haul it down to our base camp. Then, we all regroup, and backpack down to Hamilton Lakes (or, we could go another 4.1 miles and camp at Bearpaw Meadows), where we will camp for the night. Thursday, August 3: Backpack 15.2 miles (or 11.1 miles) out to our Crescent Meadow Trailhead to the cars, pack up and drive home. Burgers and pizza in Three Rivers. On the Road Meals: Remember that Scouts will need travel money for the car trip up (lunch and dinner) and breakfast for Sunday morning, July 30. Bring money for burgers and pizza in Three Rivers for the ride home, August 3. Backpack Checklist: Refer to the "Backpack Equipment Checklist for Long-Term Sierra Treks" prepared by Scoutmaster Crockett. BOY SCOUT TROOP 1210 2010 CENTENNIAL EAGLE SCOUT PEAK CLIMB Sierra 50-Miler: Giant Forest to Mineral King Directions to the trailhead: The drive-up days will be Sunday, August 15 (Francis Farquhar Patrol), Monday, August 16 (Frederick Armstrong Patrol), Saturday and Tuesday, August 17 (Coe Swift Patrol). The best route is to take Interstate 5 north to Highway 99 (junction to Bakersfield). Continue on Highway 99 and junction with Highway 198 just west of Visalia. Go east on Highway 198 through Visalia and Three Rivers. Continue northeast on 198 to Lodgepole, passing Giant Forest, approximately 63 miles. Go about 2 miles south and east of Giant Forest on a road running past Moro Rock to the road's end at the Crescent Meadow Trailhead. Patrols will plan to stay in a motel in Three Rivers, for a single night (Sunday or Monday or Tuesday nights), depending on the drive up date. Assuming 7 days for the trek, pick-up days will be Sunday, August 22 (Farquhar) and Monday, August 23 (Armstrong) at the Sawtooth-Monarch Trailhead in Mineral King. The Coe Swift Patrol will be going in and out at Crescent Meadow so their exit date will be Saturday, August 21 (they may hoof it and come out on Friday, August 20). The best route to the pick-up trailhead is north on Interstate 5 to Highway 99 (junction to Bakersfield). Continue on Highway 99 and junction with Highway 198 just west of Visalia. From Visalia, drive east on State Highway 198 for 40 miles through Woodlake village, round Lake Kaweah, and through Lemon Cove and Three Rivers villages. Continue about 6 more miles to Hammond Village to a junction with the infamous Mineral King Road. Turn right onto it and follow the narrow, twisting road 23 miles (1-1/2 to 2 hours driving time) through Silver City to the Sawtooth-Monarch Trailhead on the left, 0.8 miles past the ranger station. Parking is across the road. Backpack itinerary: Trip mileage per day, as well as layover days, can deviate from the following approximate schedule. Day #1 (Farquhar is August 16...Armstrong is August 17...Swift is August 18) : We will drive to the starting trailhead at Crescent Meadow (6,850 ft.), take off and backpack 11.1 miles to Bearpaw Meadow (7,820 ft.), where we will camp for the night. Day #2: Backpack to Hamilton Lakes (8,235 ft.), approximately 5.0 miles, camp for the night. Day #3: Backpack up and over Kaweah Gap (10,700 ft.) to just south of Nine Lake Basin and due east of the summit of Eagle Scout Peak, approximately 5.0 miles, camp for the night at about the 10,500 foot level.
Day #4: Climb Eagle Scout Peak (12,035.7 ft.), approximately 5 miles round trip. Day #5: Backpack to Little Five Lakes (10,476 ft.), approximately 7.0 miles, camp for the night. OPTION #1 (If snow levels are high) Day #6: Backpack up and over Black Rock Pass (11,600 ft.), 2.3 miles...then another 7.1 miles down to Timber Gap Trail Junction (7,125 ft.), camp for the night. Day #7: Backpack up and over Timber Gap (9,511 ft.), 3.5 miles, then another 2.3 miles down to Mineral King. OPTION #2 (If snow levels are relatively low) Day #6: Backpack down to Lost Canyon Trail Junction (9,580 ft.), 5.0 miles, then 4.0 miles to Columbine Lake (10,970 ft.), camp for the night. Day #7: Backpack up and over Sawtooth Pass (doable cross-country and 11,630 ft.), 1.0 miles, then down to the Sawtooth-Monarch Trailhead in Mineral King, 5.2 miles. First Night Motel: Recommended is the Western Holiday Lodge, 40105 Sierra Drive (Highway 198), Three Rivers, CA, 93271, phone number 559-561-4119 or 559-702-1265. On the Road Meals: Remember that Scouts will need travel money for the car trip up (lunch and dinner) and breakfast the morning of Backpack Day #1. Bring money for burgers in California's Central Valley for the ride home. Backpack checklist: Refer to the "Backpack Equipment Checklist for Long-Term Sierra Treks" prepared by Assistant Scoutmaster Crockett. Emergency Contact: Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Wilderness Office at 559-565-3766, or 911.
Allrighty...above is one of those Google Earth
things that my good friend and Assistant Scoutmaster Darrell Branine did on the computer that shows the final Class 2 route out of the Big Arroyo as if you are standing on the west slope of Black Kaweah...or you are a Clark's Nutcracker doing a fly by. Pretty neat for an old map, compass and altimeter mountaineer like me. Anyway, as you can see, you start out in the Big Arroyo about due east of the summit...meander up and through the subalpine meadow and look for a green grassy ramp that starts relatively right and then cuts left...you can see it there in about the middle of the red squiggly line (and, see the pic below). Negotiate the green, grassy ramp and bust out onto some really huge slabs of gently sloping granite...great place for a break and lots of water here from snow melt and a steamlet coming down from the saddle to the left of the summit (see pic below, again). Next...take off and head straight up the little gravel gully...left of the summit...but, don't do what Secor's book says...don't go all the way to the saddle...it is a knife edge and dangerous in my humble opinion though some hard core mountaineers might disagree (once again, see pic below). About maybe 300 feet below the saddle, cut right and zip up to the summit...some huge granite to get around but pretty safe and you will see footprints from prior trekkers. One more thing...there are ducks here and there along the way to help but remember that sometimes ducks are not positioned well by good intentioned trekkers so don't rely on them too much...use your route finding sense. I knocked over a few ducks that were way off. OK...one more thing...some may be tempted to just traverse over on the granite slabs from Kaweah Gap and avoid going down into the Big Arroyo. Oh boy...doable but not recommended unless you are a really experienced rock climber or have no fear of steep granite...in top condition...and another member of your party is capable of getting help in case of a fractured bone or some other injury...definitely not recommended for Scouts.
OK...here is what it looks like if you are a Yellow-bellied Marmot perched on a boulder in the Big Arroyo. That is Eagle Scout Peak...upper one third in the center. Note the cool little rock finger sticking up to the right. Correlate this view in your cranium with the Google Earth pic above. You can see the first part...the subalpine meadow...kind of make out the start of the green, grassy ramp smack dab in the middle of the pic that then cuts left...the huge slabs of gentle sloping granite where the last water is...can't see the saddle, really.
Yabba dabba do!!!...here are our Troop 1210 Scouts and Scouters going up the green, grassy ramp heading to the rest spot with water.
Holy fleur-de lis!!! After a well deserved rest on the really huge slabs of gently sloping granite, Troop 1210 is off to bag the summit which is dead center in the upper third of the pic. The last water is just to the left of here...flows all year `round to my knowledge. That yellow bag there towards the right is our expedition first aid kit. Now, I digress but as a head and neck surgeon and Boy Scout leader, I am kind of a gear head when it comes to wilderness first aid kits. And, I can tell you that I have purchased and used them all...including putting them together myself. I discovered Wilderness Medical Systems a couple of years ago and they have the best stuff I have ever seen and used...ten notches above the competition...better than anything you will find at REI (Recreation Equipment, Inc.) and that's tough for me to say `cause I love REI (spend days in there just walking around). They have the best medical bags and they are good looking too...and yellow (like DeWalt power tools which are the coolest) and not red or blue. A little pricey but well worth the money and the owners are Scouters so it's 50% off for Scouting units on all their products. Check out Wilderness Medical Systems at http://wildernessmedical.com.
Back to Eagle Scout Peak...here is the view from the huge slabs of gentile sloping granite...saddle on the left skyline and the summit on the right...you can just see where to go and remember to go up that little gravel gully and cut right about 300 feet below the saddle. One little wrinkle...depending on the winter snow, that little gravel gully can be snow filled so watch out for that...but pretty safe and low angle (till you get toward the skyline...another good reason not to go all the way to the saddle)...easy to cross till you get over to the right and no ice axes needed but go slow and keep track of all Scouts. Troop 1210 is actually in this pic...those little red dots about halfway up the slope from that 300 foot below the saddle right turn. And yes, been up there, done that and I was tired so I decided to hang out here and get some good pics and go up tomorrow with my second crew coming into the Big Arroyo today.
Here is the Scouting and Eagle Scout Peak display put up by Ward Elderedge, Chief Historian for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Be sure to check it out at the Giant Forest Museum which is right there at the turn-off to Moro Rock and the Crescent Meadow Trailhead. CONTACT ME If you are interested in this small piece of history, let me know. Email me (Dennis [email protected]
) and let me know when you or your unit wants to go in at Crescent Meadow...give me your contact name and email address...unit number...about how many you have participating...location where you meet and when you want to go in so I can keep tabs on who is going and I will add you to my email contact list for updates. SIDE BAR: MAJOR FREDERICK RUSSELL BURNHAM OK...are you ready for this. I did not know this until I talked to Malinee Crapsey, Chief Interpretive Specialist and Ward Elderedge, Chief Historian for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. A certain Major Frederick Russell Burnham is buried in the Three Rivers Cemetery and Three Rivers, CA is the gateway to Sequoia. His descendents still live on a ranch that he founded and retired to in the nearby foothills. Well...Major Burnham was American born and a scout (scout as in the wild west). He went toBritish Colonial
Africa in the 1800's and served as an officer in the British Army
. He became a personal friend to Lord Baden-Powell and actually taught Baden-Powell the outdoor skills and woodcraft he used to found Scouting...can you believe it!!! I visited the cemetery and Major Burnham has the biggest monument in the place. Check out Major Burnham at Wikipedia for the full story.
A PRIMER AND SOMETHING TO GET SCOUTS AND VENTURERS FIRED UP EAGLE SCOUT PEAK 2010...BACK TO OZ Dr. Dennis Crockett (I wrote this for fun in 2009)
In the year 1900, author L. Frank Baum published his children's book entitled The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
, in which a resourceful American farm girl named Dorothy is snatched up by a Kansas tornado and deposited in the fantastic land of Oz...with good and evil witches, a wizard, a tin man, a talking scarecrow, a cowardly lion, Munchkins and more. The tale is one of the best known stories in American Popular Culture
...reprinted countless times and widely translated. Thirty-nine years later, just before America's entry into the great World War
, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer adapted the tale into a musical fantasy film in Technicolor...shortening the title just a bit and calling it The Wizard of Oz. The film stars Judy Garland as Dorothy, Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, Bert Lahr, Billy Burke and Margaret Hamilton as the Wicked Witch of the West. Despite its age, The Wizard of Oz maintains an amazing following as a musical cinematic fable for young and old, and as one of the most beloved feature films
of all time.
So who were these five Eagle Scouts who summited Eagle Scout Peak in 2006 with that $15,000 Trimble R8 GPS Receiver?...well, they had quite an adventure and the tale is told below. As we were approaching Eagle Scout Peak and saw the summit was engulfed in high winds and lenticular clouds, Eagle Scout Michael M. said it looked like a tornado, and so began the symbolism of turning the trek into an adventure in Oz (both the altitude and the previous night's freeze-dried lasagna still in our bellies helped our imaginations choose names from The Wizard of Oz). And...we are going back...I have met with the Sequoia rangers and our goal is to have 100 Eagle Scouts (youth and adult) climb to the summit of Eagle Scout Peak in the summer of 2010 to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America. We start recruiting in October. Troop 1210 can be part of this and climb Eagle Scout Peak as part of a 50miler from Crescent Meadow to Mineral King. I as the Wizard plan to spend the week in the 9 Lakes Basin Base Camp and greet the crews as they hike in over Kaweah Gap along the Yellow Brick Road and into the land of Oz.
2006 Cast of Characters and Places
Kansas Yellow Brick Road Oz Emerald City Toto Dorothy Tin Man Cowardly Lion Scarecrow Wizard Munchkins Nikko (head winged monkey) Minions (other winged monkeys) Wicked Witch of the West Glinda. . .Good Witch of the North
Crescent Meadow Trailhead High Sierra Trail 9 Lakes Basin Base Camp Eagle Scout Peak Trimble R8 GPS Receiver Michael M. (needs a haircut) Ben C. (needs oil) Jason W. (anything but cowardly) Brian K. (need I say more?) Dr. Crockett (oldest, fattest and slowest) Black Bears
and Mule Deer Pudgy Marmot that lives in Oz All the other Marmots Bad Weather on Eagle Scout Peak Good Weather on Eagle Scout Peak
Mr. Kopczynski (sorry Allan)
Day 1 Dorothy and Toto, Tin Man, Cowardly Lion, Scarecrow and Wizard said goodbye to Auntie Em, and took off from Kansas and trekked 17 miles along the Yellow Brick Road to Hamilton Lakes (named after Margaret Hamilton who played the Wicked Witch of the West in the movie...just kidding), where they all camped for the night. Dorothy, Tin Man and Scarecrow carried most of the equipment, food, the rope and climbing gear. The Wizard carried Toto. Cowardly Lion carried Toto's 20 pound external battery. They saw a few Munchkins and lots of Minions. Day 2 An early start. . .up at five and back on the Yellow Brick Road by six. Then, a 2500 foot climb out of Hamilton Lakes, through the rock tunnel, past Precipice Lake where the five all stood in awe below the almost 1900 foot near-vertical north face of the Emerald City (Eagle Scout Peak, in case you forgot). Next, up and over Kaweah Gap and into Oz traveled the five and Toto. . .another six miles. Looking over their shoulder in horror, they could see that the Wicked Witch of the West had showed up and started to swirl around the Emerald City. . . fat lenticular clouds and 20 mile-per-hour winds. The top 500 feet of the Emerald City were lost from view. The five set up camp in Oz below the Emerald City. Suddenly, Nikko appeared on top of a large granite boulder, and began to whistle non-stop, warning of the perils if an attempt were to be made on the Emerald City while under the control of the Wicked Witch of the West. Nikko's Minions joined in. However, though they could not see the top of the Emerald City, all five had been there the year before and they knew the way. There was no lightning, no thunder, and no rain. . .so. . .they took a compass bearing on the summit of Black Kaweah to the east and took off west towards the Emerald City with Toto, Toto's 20 pound external battery, rope, helmets and climbing hardware, three-layered clothing, and ten essentials. Over 1200 feet of Class 2 scrambling (means no trail), over boulder fields and tarns, back and forth across large angled granite ramps with cascading water from snow melt, through a snow field, and then steep, sandy slopes. . .up 2 feet, slide back 1 foot...up 2 feet, slide back 1 foot...repeat 800 times. Though they could not see the summit, they climbed on. The Wicked Witch ruled the Emerald City. About 500 feet below the summit, the intrepid five transitioned into totaL White
-out. . .40 foot visibility. Still, there was no lightning, no thunder and no rain. Just maybe the Wicked Witch of the West was a little intimidated. So they pressed on, sticking close together so as not to lose a soul, let alone Toto and the 20 pound external battery. Suddenly, out of the grayish-white, they stood across from the summit of the Emerald City at about 5 p.m., a large room-size granite block with nothin' but air and near 1900 foot drops on three sides. While the obviously not so intimidated Wicked Witch of the West strengthened to now 20 foot visibility and 30 mile-per hour winds, the Wizard set up the anchors and uncoiled the rope. Dorothy and Tin Man donned harnesses and helmets (all those 5.8 to 5.10 climbs in Joshua Tree were worth it!!!), and Cowardly Lion and Scarecrow readied Toto and the 20 pound external battery, and filled nylon bags with sand and pebbles. Dorothy tied in and Tin Man belayed. Dorothy made multiple trips out to 117.5 centimeters of the very tip of the Emerald City (yes...they needed that measurement as part of the calculations), and set up Toto, buttressed with nylon sand bags so that Toto's circumferential "blue line" was exactly even with the very tip top of the Emerald (City, and confirmed with a level with bubble. Cowardly Lion and Scarecrow passed all the materials, one by one, to Dorothy, while the Wizard oversaw all movements and kept a wizardly eye on the Wicked Witch of the West. Tin Man belayed like he had instructed younger Scouts to do so at Joshua Tree. Then, the last task. . .Cowardly Lion and Scarecrow carefully passed the 20 pound external battery to Dorothy who took it up to Toto. Dorothy connected Toto to the battery, and the green indicator LED came on briefly and then went out!!! Yikes. . .what was the problem? Dorothy assessed the situation and discovered that the red wire to the battery had somehow become kinked!!! Dorothy got out a Leatherman, straightened the red wire, and reconnected. The green LED now blazed bright. Then, to the delight of all five trekkers, the yellow LED came on and blinked intermittently each time Toto picked up an orbiting satellite miles above the earth. Hoorah!!! Toto is alive. Wizard checked his Suunto and noted that it was now 6:30 p.m., time to descend. After packing up and leaving the climbing gear on the
summit, the five began their descent. Then, visibility opened up to about 50 feet, then 100 feet and . . .blue sky!!! Glinda. . .Good Witch of the North showed up and the Wicked Witch of the West was circling the drain. As the five continued their descent, Glinda. . .Good Witch of the North now ruled the Emerald City and the Wicked Witch of the West was dead. The exhausted five stumbled into their camp in Oz under a clear starlit sky at about 9 p.m. with headlamps. Wizard was the last in, and fell horizontal into his tent with boots on. Dorothy, Tin Man, Cowardly Lion and Scarecrow cooked dinner and fed Wizard in his tent. Then, all fell asleep. In their dreams, they could see Toto's blinking yellow LED far away on the summit of the Emerald City. Day 3 All five awoke late and cooked a wonderful breakfast of freeze-dried hash browns and pork patties under clear skies. There was lots of Tang and the retelling of the previous day's adventure. Toto was in the Emerald City and busily collecting data from multiple satellite fly overs. The afternoon was spent goofing around and swimming in the Big Arroyo. Again, they saw a few Munchkins, but no humans. Nikko and the minions whistled happily, as if to say they were glad for the five and their triumph over the Wicked Witch of the West. Then, at about 4 p.m., Dorothy, Tin Man and Cowardly Lion packed up, and trekked back up to the summit of the Emerald City, where they bivouacked for the night. They confirmed that Toto was still alive. . .the yellow LED blinking away. Scarecrow wanted to go, but the Wizard was afraid to spend the night alone in Oz. That early evening, Dorothy, Tin Man, and Cowardly Lion made all the final measurements including a compass bearing from Toto to the tip top of the Emerald City, and radioed the data to Wizard. Day 4 Dorothy, Tin Man and Cowardly Lion arose at 5 a.m., disassembled Toto and trekked down to the camp in Oz, and joined up with Scarecrow and Wizard. After a quick breakfast, all five headed out, back along the Yellow Brick Road. They gave a farewell to the Emerald City (remember, Eagle Scout Peak) as they descended toward Hamilton Lakes and trekked 17 miles that day, camping for the night just six miles from Kansas. Day 5. . .up at 4 a.m., and out to Kansas and to the open arms of Auntie Em, who fed the five fresh fruit and muffins. There was even iced Starbuck's in a bottle for Wizard. There you go, the tale of an adventurous trek of five Eagle Scouts from Troops 636 and 1210. Presently, the data that Toto collected has been downloaded into the computers at RBF Consulting (an engineering and surveying firm) in Irvine, and the exact altitude, latitude and longitude of Eagle Scout Peak has been determined. The number will remain a secret for now, known only to the Wizard and RBF Consulting (the Eagle Scouts will be required to go to a geodetic website themselves to run the data and calculate the numbers). These numbers will then go into the National Geodetic Data Bank, and the company GEOSITU will be making up a commemorative pewter benchmark that will be sold all over the world. UPDATES...YES, THERE WILL BE UPDATES Be sure to check this website from time to time for updates...thanks, Assistant Scoutmaster Dennis Crockett, Troop 1210, Rancho Santa Margarita, CA...looking forward to Eagle Scout Peak in 2011 and will definitely be my last...I am getting old. I said that in 2010 but I really want to trek some other Sierra spots in 2012.