Thursday, May 21, 2015

Pico update

  • Just got notice last night that we do in fact have campsite 11 (and 10 if we want it).  The only other guests on our side of the river are 5 folks from Carmel Valley in campsite 12.  115 folks staying on the other side of camp.  Pack 93 is 1/3 of Pico this year! :) 
  • Still need folks to bring two more full size propane tanks.  Please email your den leader if you can bring one.  
  • Forecast is overcast and 50-60 degrees with a 10% chance of rain all weekend.  50% chance Friday morning, so the ground may be moist.  Definitely bring a tarp for under your tent, a mattress to keep you off the ground, and warm/layered/rain clothes.
  • If you are bringing guests with you, please make sure they have all of this information.
  • Don't forget to print out your medical forms and firearms permission forms.  URLs are in the previous post.
  • See you all Friday or Saturday!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Pico Instructions

Hi all-
Sorry, thought this went out earlier.  We were making some changes to the menu (may still make some improvements) and forgot to publish.  Hopefully it's not too late for you all to pick up last minute items if you need to.
I visited the camp on Sunday, everything looks great.  Plenty of firewood, and the river is about the same level it was last year.  Low, but still plenty deep to play in (although ooh is it cold!).  I haven't yet heard whether we got camp 11 or not, so watch for signs marked for Pack 93 on the road in.
At this point, the forecast says rain Friday morning, and then slight chance all weekend.  Bring rain gear and cross your fingers.
Looking forward to seeing everyone this weekend!

Pico Blanco Information

To get to Pico Blanco, drive south on Hwy 1.  Just past the turnoff for the Rocky Point Restaurant, make a left turn onto Palo Colorado Rd.  At the end of Palo Colorado (40 minutes in or so), you'll come to a campground named Botchers Gap.  (Check out the rare views into the Ventana wilderness backcountry!)  On your right is a green gate and a dirt road leading down the hill.  Open the gate and drive down the hill 3.5 mi to Pico Blanco.  (If you're arriving in daylight, notice the big white mountain visible from the dirt road.  Any guesses on what it's called?)  Expect around 1.5 hours total drive time from the Salinas area.

We will most likely be staying at camp 11.  In years past, we've had that whole side of the camp to ourselves.  The main area (camps 1-3) is easier for cars to access, but packed like sardines.  As you come into camp, don't take any of the right hand turns into camping areas.  Drive straight and you will eventually cross the river.  The first crossing is easy and has concrete on the bottom.  If you are arriving at night, just go straight, the concrete does drop off on the sides.  After the first river crossing is a parking lot on your left and then a second crossing.  Depth isn't the problem on the second crossing, it's just rocky, so go slow.  After you cross, you'll start seeing signs we place for Pack 93.  Follow those signs to camp.  Turn around and park with your car facing back up the road (it's a readiness thing in case of emergency)

In the past, we have told folks not to make the second crossing if they have a low clearance vehicle.  In 2014, someone crossed it in a two door Honda Civic without scraping, so it's not as much of a concern as we thought, especially with such low water.  Minivans shouldn't have a problem.  If you are really nervous about the crossing, park your car in the lot after the first crossing, walk across the footbridge, and follow the signs to our camp.  It's a ten minute walk, so bring a flashlight if arriving at night.  You can shave some time off of your walk if you stay to the right (walk through camp 9 - see the map)  One of us will drive back and ferry your stuff across.


What to expect:
Lots of room for tents.  Nice bathrooms with heated showers and good sinks with soap.  No electricity or cell coverage.  There is a phone in the lodge for emergencies: (831) 625-4202.  Ample firewood available, but we usually have to split it.  Nights are cool, dress appropriately.  There is poison oak near the cliff and near the river.  Easily avoidable, just make sure everyone in your family knows what it looks like.  The main activities are playing in the river and hanging out by the fire.  This is not a strongly structured weekend, everyone is welcome to pursue their own interests.

Archery is available, as is shooting BB guns and (if 11 years old) shooting 22 rifles.  Pico is staffed by experienced rangemasters that strongly emphasize safety.  Some kids flock to the range, others could care less, so if you prefer that your child not participate, there is still plenty for him/her to do.

Saturday night will be a get together around the campfire bowl.  The boys are encouraged to do skits, and 93 has stolen the show in years past thanks to Doug Toby.  I'm sure this year will be no exception.  On Sunday, people usually head out, so the lines for archery and BB guns are much lower.  I'll try (again) to lead a hike on Sunday to some waterfalls if anyone wants to go.  All activities are finished by Sunday at 5.

Skinners ridge, the trekker patch hike at Pico, starts just past our campsite, so it might be fun to hike up there late Friday night.  We did it last year, and even got to see some shooting stars.

What to bring:
(last year was the first time some of our folks have been camping. I'm assuming the same for this year, so I'm going to be overly detailed here just in case)
-Filled out medical consent form.
-Tent (note: a 4 person tent really fits about 2.5 people.  Go bigger if you can.  Borrow or WalMart)
-Tarp for the ground under the tent (recommended, esp if it rains)
-Inflatable mattress, especially for the grownups, is highly recommended from personal experience.  Target/WalMart works.  I have a car powered inflator you can borrow if need be, or you can get one cheap.  The mattress is for comfort, but more importantly to keep you from losing heat into the ground.  In the past, some parents were uncomfortably cold at night because they didn't bring a mattress.
-Sleeping bags, pillows
-Flashlight, esp if you're arriving at night and need to set up a tent in the dark (tip: pack so you can find it easily)
-"Camp stuff" if you have it (lanterns, etc)  You could bring your stove, but it probably won't be used.  We'll have a Coleman stove for hot water + 2 big propane grills.
-Camp chairs if you have them (they get a LOT of use)
-Bug spray, sunblock, hat
-Warm clothes for night and mornings (tip: bring a comfortable warm cap)
-Rain clothes just in case (Bryan got caught out in the rain with no rain clothes on his first Pico trip.  Be Prepared!)
-Bathing suit
-Sandals/Water shoes for midnight bathroom runs and playing in the river
-Sturdy shoes for hiking and walking around camp
-Cub scout uniform or class B (optional) for Sat nite
-Towels for shower
-Reusable cups/mugs/water bottles (there is a spigot nearby with potable water that we use for drinking and dishes.)  Something with handles that could take coffee/hot chocolate would be great.
-Reusable silverware
-Resuable plates.  We will have some disposable just in case, but let's try to reduce our footprint.
-Snacks for your group
-1 roll paper towels
-Drinking water if you don't want to drink from the tap (water is tested safe to drink)
-Musical instrument (some of us bring guitars and play at night, please join us)
-Filled out Firearms permission form (only if you want to allow your kids to shoot BB guns on the range)
-Pocket knives for the kids:  We bring bars of soap that the boys can practice whittling safely with their own foldable knives.  According to the Boy Scout guidelines, Wolves are eligible to use a pocketknife.  That means all of our former Tigers as well.  Once they 'pass' with soap, they can whittle sticks near camp.  I know, kids with knives and sharp sticks. :) If you don't think your son can handle the responsibility (and that you can keep an eye on them and reprimand if they aren't being safe), don't bring.  I have some bars from last year I'm bringing, but not enough for all, so bring your own bar if you have one.  Note: don't just let the kids go wild with the soap.  We will instruct, and also give them a good space to do it.  Every year the soap chips make a mess, we need to figure out a spot to designate for that this year.
-There is no alcohol allowed at Pico

Friday Dinner: Hotdogs/Hamburgers over fire, Greek Salad, S'mores
Saturday Breakfast: Pancakes, Eggs, Bacon, Fruit, Coffee, Milk
Saturday Lunch: TBD
Saturday Dinner: Make-your-own foil meat/veggie packets (new this year), spaghetti with extra hot dogs in red sauce, salad, Garlic bread over fire, S'mores
Sunday Breakfast: French toast, Eggs, Bacon, Coffee, OJ
Sunday Lunch: TBD
Sunday Dinner onward: BYO + any leftovers

Here is a rough draft of the meal assignments.  My apologies if I assigned someone KP duties both this year and last year, I'm happy to swap families around as needed.

Fri Dinner: Banks

Sat Bfast Prep: Toby / Williams
Sat Bfast Cleanup: Tackett
Sat Lunch: Lloyd
Sat Dinner Prep: Barley / Weidemann / Foley
Sat Dinner Cleanup: Malley

Sun Bfast Prep: Riddell / Black
Sun Bfast Cleanup: Cain / Alexander
Sun Lunch: Gokey

Additional Needs
Two full size propane tanks (email your den leader if you can bring one)
Tablecloths for picnic table
S'mores sticks (we have lots, so don't buy, but bring if you have) (mark as yours somehow.  Be creative.)
Extra Cooler full of ice (block ice lasts longer) (email your den leader if you can bring)
Sugar and creamer for Coffee

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Last Call for Pico Camp out

Hello everyone,
If you still want to join us for Family Camp at Pico Blanco, it is not too late!  But we do need to know right away.  If you want to go and haven't signed up yet, please email me directly to let me know.


Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Pico Pico Pico!!

Hello everyone,
We are heading into the home stretch of the Cub Scout year, and our focus is shifting to family camp at Pico.  Looks like we will have a great turn out!  Our reservation has already been sent and we have paid the council the required fees, so now it is time for us to collect the fees from all of the families.

Cost is $45 per person, for those age 6 and older.  This includes all of the activities for the whole weekend, and the food.  The Pack will buy all food for all the meals for the weekend. 

Over the next couple days, you will see invoices from our Square account. You can pay via credit card if you like.  Or if you prefer you can bring cash or check to our meeting Monday night.  If you bring cash or check, the Pack will save a few dollars on fees.

It is not too late to sign up.  If anyone would still like to go, since we have passed the early signup deadline, the fee goes up $5 per person to $50.  Sign up if you have not already and still want to go.

We will send out more info shortly on things to bring.  Briefly, you will need your own camping gear: tent, sleeping bags, blankets.  Cooking equipment is not needed.  The Pack has all of the cooking gear.  If you have your own plates, cups and utensils, please bring those.  We will send out more details soon.

We will also assign families to each meal for prep, and then for clean up after.  The schedule will be made in advance and posted in case anyone has any comments.

Thank you, and we will see you Monday night.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Advancement Ceremony and next meeting, Monday May 11th

Hello everyone,
Our next meeting will be Monday night May 11th at the Church at 6:30.  Note that this is the time for everyone, including the Tigers.

At the meeting we will have a ceremony to recognize the advancement of the Tigers and Wolves.  This will be a special ceremony so please be sure to attend.

This will also be our last regular meeting of the school year.  Our final event will be the Family Camp at Pico.  If you haven't signed up for that yet, please do. 

See you Monday.