Scouts, leaders shape up Glen Eyrie trails at property’s 1st-time Camporee

      
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Jeremiah Tackett (left) and Nathan Hawkins of Troop 124 in Falcon were among 150-some Boy Scouts who helped work on Glen Eyrie trails at the May 14-16 Camporee.
Westside Pioneer photo
Enduring intermittent rainfall, about 150 Boy Scouts and 50 leaders, plus 55 adult support staffers, completed the first-ever Scout Camporee on the private Glen Eyrie property May 14-16, enjoying a scenic outing and repairing roughly 1.8 miles of trail.
       “They did it all, just like us adult trail builders,” summarized Scout Camporee Director Bob Johnson of the youths' efforts. “They acted like adults and performed just as well. They exceeded our scope of action for the weekend in just 11.5 hours of trail work.”
       The Scouts earned badges and service hours for their efforts and had a chance to tour Palmer's castle. Their colorful tents filled the better part of a sports field.
       The work included not just simple trail widening, but construction of structures such as steps of stone and wood, rock retaining walls, drains and dips as well as placement of rip-rap and crusher fines, Johnson said.
       The project was intended not just to get trail built but to introduce the boys to the technical niceties of such work so that they might carry on the volunteer tradition in later years, he has previously explained.
       Glowing praise also came from Toby Reed, spokesman for the Navigators non-profit organization, which has owned the 800-acre Glen Eyrie (originally the home of Colorado Springs founder William Palmer) for over half a century and uses the site as a conference center. “We loved it,” he said of the Camporee. “The interaction with the Scouts was fun, and the work they did was amazing.”
       The result was trails that are “easier and safer to use,” which will benefit Glen Eyrie guests as well as area residents who are free to hike at the estate if they register in advance.

Camporee director and experienced trailbuilder Bob Johnson (center, bending over) leads a crew in the construction of a rock wall.
Westside Pioneer photo

       Adding to the hosts' pleasure, the boys were “very polite and willing to serve,” Reed said. “The troops worked together even though they came from all over.”
       The Camporee, celebrating the 100-year anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), resulted from overlapping interests between the leaders of the Glen as well as BSA. Before the event, there was talk about the collaboration continuing, and Reed said that is still the plan. “We're already talking about next year and having them back,” he said. “The door is open for another jamboree or camporee.”

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