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Message from the Scoutmaster

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John Loud

It is an honor to join the ranks of other devoted scouts parents who make Troop 80 what it is in my role as Scoutmaster.

I have always had a love for the outdoors and have enjoyed hiking, backpacking, mountaineering, rock climbing, cross-country skiing, kayaking, sailing, canoeing, and biking for most of my life. I am happy to share my love for the outdoors with Scouts who are learning and growing. I took the Outdoor Educator course that was offered the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) to learn to teach outdoor skills to other people in 1996. It was about a 25 day course in the back country and included mountaineering, crevasse rescue practice, ice axe use, glacier traversing, map and compass work, first aid, and many other back country skills. There was also a rock climbing part that was not conducted in the back country where we learned to set up anchors and top rope systems for rock climbing.

I believe that Scouting offers our boys an opportunity to develop real muscles rather than what I jokingly refer to as Wii muscles. There is no better classroom than the outdoors to learn skills and confidence that will serve our scouts well for the rest of their lives. I also find that the outdoors to provide me with a profound sense of awe and respect for God who I believe made it all. I appreciate the few minutes we spend each morning in our religious observance where each has the opportunity to reflect and learn reverence.

While sitting in front of a Wii poses no immediate danger (other than the serious health risks of a sedentary lifestyle), our outdoor adventures include an unavoidable element of real world risk. I love working with the others in Troop 80 who are similarly devoted to creating a culture of safety. I went through BSA's three day certification class to become qualified to lead our outdoor rock climbing program. I also took two days of wilderness first aid to renew my first aid qualifications. Our goal is to help our scouts develop skills for life as they learn to identify and safely navigate the challenges of such adventures.

I love helping our Scouts face challenges and then watching them succeed. I am honored to share this journey with our scouts and their parents.

Last updated Oct 15, 2011 by Jimmy Tran