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Thread: Geocaching Merit Badge

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Conway, Arkansas
    Posts
    762

    Geocaching Merit Badge

    The Boy Scouts of America announced a new merit badge today. Geocaching!

    Here are the requirements:

    http://www.scoutingnews.org/2010/03/...g-merit-badge/

    Pretty awesome! Local troops will be looking for merit badge counselors for this badge. This will be a great opportunity to introduce a lot of Boy Scouts (age 11-21) and their leaders to Geocaching.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Lower Arkansas
    Posts
    620
    Wow! Wish they had something like this when I was in Boy Scouts. Being an Eagle Scout the "Cache to Eagle" program mentioned near the end of the requirements caught my eye. Have we spoken about this before and I just not recall? Seems familiar, but I can't place it. Could you elaborate?

    P.S. I will have to study up on some of those requirements before I could help anyone complete it - UTM? Have I heard of that?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Fort Smith
    Posts
    325
    Cache to Eagle looks great. Nothing in the scout troops near me have done anything yet.

    (I'm also an Eagle Scout)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Conway, AR
    Posts
    30
    The Geocaching Merit Badge would have been one that I would have worked on during my trail to Eagle Scout.
    Thanks,
    Dexterjg
    James
    Conway, AR

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Conway, Arkansas
    Posts
    762
    Here is some info I found on the "Cache to Eagle" program:

    The Cache to Eagle Program

    The Cache to Eagle program consists of dozens of public geocaches that are posted on geocaching.com. These are normal public caches set up at the sites of nice Eagle projects that also offer good cache spots. In most ways they are like an ordinary cache: all rules followed, caches are properly maintained by the owners, they are located in a good site, etc. The additions are twofold: The cache description includes information about the service that was done and there is a prize (such as a patch) that can be earned or purchased. Most of the series consist of 12 sites, with each site having a point of the Scout Law as the clue that must be turned in to earn the patch.

    Initial response to the Cache to Eagle series pilot has been fantastic. Hundreds of people visit and observe Scouting Eagle projects, and many of them write public notes on the logs at geocaching.com. Scouts and Scouters love to visit these, as they get to see a wide variety of Eagle projects themselves, as well as have fun finding the cache. It is free, easy and a true win-win situation for both Scouting and the geocaching community.

    All councils and districts are encouraged to expand on this program with public caches of their own. If each district set up only 12 Cache to Eagle geocaches, we would have 1,320,000 visits to our Eagle projects by the public each year—and this is a minimum estimate!

    There are additional guidelines that must be followed, however. It is important that we do not ask for money or for membership to a specific unit, and that the Eagle projects that are chosen are lasting tributes to Scouting's service.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    71
    Long time since I've been here. I think I'm going to the MB Counselor for Ouachita Area Council - Nischa Sipo District. At least, I've told the DE, SE, and most of the ScoutMasters and they have all been really happy and excited about me doing it. I've got one cache at the coucil office and I've trying to get more out for the Get in the Game program.

    I even did a unit for it at our Cub Twilight Camp a couple of weeks ago. They loved it.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Paris, Arkansas
    Posts
    824
    At a recently Pack camp out I hid a couple of temporary caches for some Cub Scouts and not only did they have fun searching for the caches, but their parents did too.

    I hope that the BSA also create a Belt Loop and Pin for Cub Scouts since they have the Merit Badge for the Boy Scouts.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    71
    You know you can use it as part of the Map and Compass BL and pin?

    Belt Loop
    2. Explain how a compass works

    Pin
    8. In the field, show how to take a compass bearing and how to follow it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Crow Mountain, Russellville Area
    Posts
    284
    AFM, seriously? I have a difficult time telling when you are pulling my leg.

    I think it's funny that the scout is required to tell how map and compass are important to geocaching. Of course, a virtual map is a map and a virtual compass is a compass, but I'm amazed at how many cachers only know how to follow an arrow and little else.

    As far as accuracy of GPS compared to plotting a point on a map using UTM, I can vouch for that. I remember the days before selective availability was turned off. I was lucky to get a hundred yard accuracy. So, when SA was turned off, I was skeptical. I plotted a point on a quad map, at the middle of a local bridge. I input the waypoint into the GPS. I traveled to the middle of the bridge and set a route to that waypoint...my GPSr told me I was only 8 feet away! It was the dawn of a new era!

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