S: Seasons of Change
BC: A Troop 942 & Wentink Production
FC: Troop 942 - Philmont 2011 | The Wentink Family
1: And the Adventure Begins... | BSA Troop 942 Calvary Baptist Church, Winston Salem, NC Back Row (L-R): Mike Bridges, David Womble, Richard McMillan, Eli Wentink, Christian Wentink, Preston McMillan, Guy Wentink, & Nathaniel Wentink; Front Row (L-R): Blake Bridges, Jake Womble, Grant McMillan, & Clay Rusher. Wednesday, June 15, 2011
3: After a bus ride from Winston Salem to RDU, we boarded our Southwest flight for Denver.
4: Upon arriving in Denver, Lisa and Michael met us and took us back to their house in Broomfield to spend the first night. Not sure if they knew what they were in for with 12 scouts. | Lisa prepared a great dinner for us - lots of spaghetti. We celebrated Guy's birthday... man, there were alot of candles on that carrot cake.
5: On Thursday (6/16) after getting some supplies, we headed west and visited Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater. After walking around up the steps, we could tell the air was thin and we were not acclimated yet. The boys raced from the bottom near the stage to the top of the steps and most could not make it to the top due to being out of breath. We had a great time looking at the rocks, surrounding mountains, and Denver's skyline in the distance.
6: The boys enjoyed a sports photo shoot at Red Rocks while we were there - lots of girls. There were also a lot of people running, stepping, and doing other exercises at the amphitheater.
7: We left Red Rocks and traveled west towards Leadville. Stopped to eat lunch off the road near Copper Mine, between Frisco and Vail. This was a great view. The air was crisp and the water cold.
8: This area was a great photo op, with the river and mountains, which the boys took full advantage of. There were a number of campsites along the river and we discussed camping here... but, we had BIGGER mountains to climb.
9: We continued to Leadville and went to the National Mining Museum. Afterward, we explored an old mining area north of town. We then headed for Elbert.
10: Hiking on Mt. Elbert (14,440') - Friday, June 17, 2011 We camped at the base of Elbert on Thursday night. Our base camp was at 9,700'. We started our "warm-up hike" just after sun up. Lisa was our hiking guide since she had reached the summit several times before.
12: Hiking up Elbert was tough due to thin air - still not acclimated. But when we reached 13,000' (some were higher), we were engulfed by a sudden snow/ice storm with high winds and thunder. We had to head back down to the trees for shelter.
15: Trip up to Pikes Peak - Saturday, 6/18 Crew took the train up to the summit. It was warm and pleasant in Manitou Springs and 30 degrees and windy on Pikes Peak. Views were amazing and it was not as tiring as hiking Elbert.
16: We visited downtown Manitou Springs and Garden of the Gods Park after Pikes Peak. Lots of sights... One of the highlights was staying at the Lone Duck Campground with all you can eat pancakes for breakfast for four dollars. Nathaniel won the eat-off the first morning, but had many challengers.
17: While driving through Colorado Springs, we stopped by a County Fair to spend an afternoon and the boys had a great time at the Air National Guard Booth. That evening, we ate at Fargo's Pizza. Fancy old-time restaurant and but the boys enjoyed the pizza. We then headed south to camp at Lathrop State Park in southern Colorado.
18: Our last night before Philmont was spent at Lathrop State Park in southern Colorado (sunrise top left). Stayed up late watching satellites cross the sky. Grant & David used some free time the next morning to jam in the parking lot to ZZ Top (middle left). After crossing the state line into New Mexico, we saw the burn area on the way to Cimarron. We also passed the NRA Whittington Center.
19: Sunday, June 19th We were now getting very close, though this sign took us on a slight "detour", we found our way, about 15 minutes later. Right: This was our Itinerary for our trip. Hiking over 70 miles and climbing from an elevation of 7,000' to more than 12,440'.
20: Arriving at Philmont - June 19 The crew arrived at Phimont Sunday morning. We took a while to get assigned to a tent and finally moved to settle in. It was hard to sleep the first night in camp... strong winds flapping the tent sides and blowing lots of sand. We had sand in our nose and mouth all night. We were glad to hit the trail to get some sleep.
21: At the Program Service on Sunday night, Christian received the US Flag to carry as our Crew Leader. On Monday, June 20th, everyone was preparing for the adventure and waiting at the assembly area. We had the last real food for the next 11 days. The Crew was excited being on the bus heading to Zastrow Turnaround to be dropped off. Goodbye world for almost 2 weeks!
22: The McMillan Gang! | The Pack-line
23: Monday, June 20, 2012 Dropped off at Zastrow Turnaround and wished "good luck". | The Start of the Wentink Philmont Experience
24: The first hiking day was a short hike, only about 2 1/2 miles. But it gave us all a chance to acclimate to our surroundings. The first night we visited Zastrow Camp and the Crew enjoyed playing horseshoes for several hours. Grant & Blake enjoyed listening to a staffer play the bagpipes.
25: What form?
26: Tuesday, June 21 The next morning at Abreu, the scouts milked goats and some had root beer. They learned about early life on the ranch. Our mascot, the Chick-fil-a Cow got a ride with Andrew, our Ranger. The CF Cow was also talking smack to the chickens.
27: From Rayado to Lower Bonito, we hiked what is known as the "Stair Master" - a climb from 7,000' to just over 9,000'. It was a very rugged, uphill climb with very narrow trails. | Ranger Andrew
28: Tuesday, June 21 Reached Lower Bonito Camp. The spring water was cold, mini-bears were plentiful, and the free range cattle did not mind us being there. This was one of the most beautiful campsites.
31: On the trail again... Wed. June 22 | Wednesday, June 22 Left Lower Bonito heading for Miners Park
33: Tooth of Time from trail near Trail Peak | Just hiking, hiking, hiking, hiking....
34: Crater Lake Camp
35: Hiking toward Miner's Park
37: We camped at Miners Park and took a side hike to let everyone rock climb... they enjoyed it. We were able to shower and wash some clothes, if that is what it was called. We were able to get some dirt and dust off. The boys enjoyed throwing horse shoes again. We slept under the stars while our clothes dried... in 15 minutes. The next day, we heading for the Tooth of Time and Ponderosa Park, a dry camp.
38: Side hike to Tooth of Time | Thursday, June 23: Left Miners Park and stopped to eat breakfast at North Fork Urraca Camp (upper left)... heading uphill towards Shaffers Pass Camp. Note the water jug, dry camp coming up. The other 2 1/2 gal water jug was in Richard's pack.
39: Philmont Base Camp
40: Tooth of Time | 9,003'
42: Tough climb getting up to the Tooth of Time summit. No trail, just "rock hopping". Made it with no injuries, but getting down looked much worse than going up. We were able to get everyone up and take a couple of group photos (right). | Troop 942 - 2011 Philmont Crew Tooth of Time - Thur, June 23
43: This is the Tooth looking at it from the backside (looking east). The peak is where the group picture was taken. Shear granite face on the south side of the mountain.
44: Friday, June 24 Stayed at Ponderosa Park Camp Thursday night. The Crew ran out of water (very hot on the Tooth and long hike) and had to send three scouts ahead to Clarks Fork to get water and return. Stopped at Clarks Fork again to replenish water on Friday morning and shower... kind of. Sulfur water started here. Heading to Cimarroncito and the conservation project.
45: Clarks Fork Shower | Cimarroncito Reservoir
47: Our crew did our conservation project in the heat of noon and had nasty sulfur water to drink. We found that you mainly tasted the last swallow, so we drank as much as we could stand then heaved on the last drink. We were able to get a shower that day. Everyone was tired and most were in our tents before sundown. The next day we would restock food and head for Visto Grande.
48: Saturday, June 25 Left Cimarroncito heading to Visto Grande. Though the water got better from a spring, the smell of the camp latrine was bad. The boys called it Smello Grande. | Heading through Ute Gulch | We resupplied at Ute Gulch Commissary. We were able to get some fresh fruit - apples, pears and oranges. Do not recall fruit ever tasting this good. The boys ate fruit and all we heard was "mmmm-mmmm-mmmmm". Richard won the award for the longest backpack. Guy still carried the award for the HEAVIEST.
49: This is what happens when old men try to keep up with younger scouts. | Stopped at Upper Bench Camp for lunch- dry pond.
52: Sunday, June 26 Left Visto Grande (aka Smello Grande). Headed under Hwy 64, through this culvert and into Bear Canyon, heading to Head of Dean. This was to be a long hike day. Hiked through a large burn zone from a forest fire several years ago. Finally made it to camp about mid-afternoon.
53: Made it to Head of Dean Camp
54: Watching water boil. | Glad this is not a "scratch and sniff" photo. | \Red Roof Inn
55: Monday June 27
56: After participating in some challenge games, it was off to Miranda Camp | Getting to Miranda, base of Baldy
58: Miranda FUN
61: Tuesday, June 28: Started our hike to Baldy about 5 am. Due to severe blisters, Guy was not able to make the hike.
65: On top of Baldy Mountain - 12,441'
69: Sunset over Baldy Mountain Tuesday, June 28
70: Wednesday, June 29 Sunrise over Miranda. Going to pick up our burro and hike to Elkhorn Camp
71: One day later and many miles away...
72: Elkhorn Camp This was our last night on the trail. Everyone was talking about milkshakes and other good food. The boys had to water and feed our burro... they named him Reggie. | Last night and we were tired. | Think you can guess what just happened... & who did it.
73: Thursday, June 30 During the last day and a half, we were moving toward the finish line with our burro, Reggie (Blue No.36). He was stubborn, but the boys liked him. He was only carrying one day of food, that is all that was left. We now left Elkhorn Camp and were heading to Ponil Camp; final stop on our adventure.
75: We finally arrived at Ponil late Thursday morning (6/30). The Staff was demonstrating branding, so the boys branded everything in sight - even tried to brand each other. They enjoyed saying goodbye to Reggie, our burro. We do not think Reggie had ever been hugged this much. This was the last stop on our Philmont adventure. It was about to be over.
77: On day 11, after 75 miles, the Philmont adventure was completed.
78: We settled back into base camp and cleaned up a bit. The boys were admiring their belts and buckles. When we leaving the next day, this was the time we were pulling out... a great sign.
79: Friday, 7-1-2011
80: After leaving Philmont, the Crew stopped by the Pueblo Air Museum before heading back to Colorado Springs and the Lone Duck Campground.
81: The crew stopped at the Flying W Ranch for a good meal and entertainment. This was the first "real" meal that did not include nuts and granola in almost 2 weeks. The boys got their fill.
82: How many scouts can fit in a bobsled? | Saturday, July 2, 2011 After leaving the Lone Duck Campground, we visited the Olympic Training Center, which was more like a small college campus. Then we visited the United States Air Force Academy. The boys really enjoyed being on campus and watching the cadets drill. Now it was almost our last leg of the trip. Back to see Lisa's house and flying home the next day.
84: Upon returning to Broomfield for one more night with Lise and Mike, the boys enjoyed a long relaxing sit in the hot tub.
85: The Chick-fil-a Cow served as our co-pilot on the return trip. We were greeted by Troop 942 groupies upon arriving at RDU. After being gone for over 18 days, we returned to Raleigh on July 4th at 12:40 AM, then boarded the Winston Salem-bound bus. | What an Adventure - Look forward to going back.