Alpine District Klondike Derby


Chris Quill

Troop 220 poses for a quick photo after earning their awards.

Faith Smith, Community

The Klondike derby is an annual event held by some Scouts of America (or BSA) and Scouts Canada districts during the winter months and is based on the heritage of the Klondike Gold Rush. BSA units have been running Klondike derbies since 1949. The Alpine District Klondike derby was held from January 27th to 29th at Camp Koinonia in Nelson, Washington. The theme of the Klondike derby was Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Troop 220 participated and won first place in two of the three events.

After breakfast and the raising of the colors, the scouts went back to camp to get their sled ready for their first task, the skills stations. There were seven stations total, and a possible ten points were to be earned at each station. The first station was knot tying, where each scout had to tie four different knots. The next station was fire building, where the scouts had to start a fire without using matches or a lighter. The third station was first aid; the scouts were given the scenario that one of the scouts had broken his arm; they had to talk through their process and demonstrate the proper first aid techniques. After that, the scouts headed to the next station: ‘save the animator,’ which was a team building station consisting of tossing a rope to someone fifteen feet away and pulling them to safety. Another team building station was the fish toss, where the scouts were given a tennis ball and a tarp, and they had two tries to launch it as far as they could for varying numbers of points. The next station they went to was eleven essentials, which asked them to name all the ten essentials (first aid kit and whistle, pocket knife, water and trail food, extra clothing, rain gear, flashlight, matches and fire starter, sun protection, map and compass, 6 feet of rope or paracord) they’re required to have, along with an eleventh essential: knowledge. The final station was orienteering. The scouts had to use compasses and pacing to find three ‘shrubbery’ as a group. Troop 220 earned 69 of the 70 possible points, allowing them to take first place.

For lunch, there was a mandatory chili cook off. Each troop had to provide a chili for the judges to grade and award points. There were over 20 different chilis made and tasted. Troop 220 didn’t win any awards for their chili. The final event of the day was the most anticipated: the sled race. Each patrol had a sled with the ten essentials and a rope tied to the front so the scouts could pull it. The route was a quarter of a mile loop with five different staff members along the trail to ask scout trivia questions. Who was the man that founded Boy Scouts? Lord Baden-Powell. Who brought Boy Scouts to America? William Boyce. What do the two stars on the first-class badge symbolize? Truth and knowledge. What does the upturned scroll on the BSA emblem symbolize? A scout smiles as they do their duty. What does the knot at the bottom of the scout patch mean? Do a good turn daily. At the end of the day, Troop 220 won the sled race with a time of 10:43.

Inside the snow cave Troop 220 built in their freetime.