This past August almost 100 scouts, scouters, and venturers from Cascade Pacific Council and Wauna La-Mon’tay Lodge converged on the Mt. Hood and Willamette National Forests for a week of service. Special guests in attendance of this event include Central Region Chief Logan Greene and National Vice Chief Tyler Inberg.
Starting on August 14th, participants and staff met at council-owned Aubrey Watzek Lodge on Mt. Hood to complete their sign in process, receive their uniform and equipment, and be placed in work crews. The staff received their final briefings about their jobs, projects, and the week to come. A large dinner and group photo was taken before everybody drove to their various base camps at Camp Pioneer (Willamette National Forest) and Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp (Mt. Hood National Forest). Once the crews arrived at their respective sites, sleeping arrangements were made and participants were briefed on the camp procedures.
In the morning at Camp Pioneer, Forest Service Rangers talked about safety procedures while working, and trained the Crew Leaders on how to properly use the Forest Service’s radios for check in and emergencies. The crews then geared up and traveled to their various project sites. A lot of the work out of Camp Pioneer consisted of removing trees that were encroaching on the trail in areas that were destroyed in the 2003 B&B complex fires. After the day’s work, crews returned to Camp Pioneer to clean up, swim, eat dinner and partake in a well deserved rest.
At Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp the crews awoke and traveled to their work site for a project and safety briefing. The crews at Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp were working alongside members of the Forest Service Trail Crew to make a half mile trail wheelchair accessible after flooding washed out large sections of the trail leading to a waterfall. The hard work in both forests continued for the next several days with early morning wake up, many hours on the trail, and thorough Leave No Trace discussions.
On the 18th, crews at Pioneer divided their efforts between finishing up several trail projects and cleaning up the camp in preparation for the crew’s trip back to Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp. By this time the crews at Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp had finished working on the wheelchair accessible trail, so they began working on smaller trails in the surrounding area.
When all of the participants of ArrowCorps 2016 arrived at Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp they ate a well deserved feast. The meal was followed by a show featuring a fantastic week in review video, and an address from Cascade Pacific Council Scout Executive Matthew Devore. He gave a parting challenge to those in attendance: Within one year’s time lead a community service project. For the dedicated participants of this event, this challenge was more than obtainable, and eagerly accepted. Later in the evening, a Brotherhood ceremony was conducted for seven arrowmen.
In the morning after breakfast was eaten, camp was cleaned up a final time, and directions for the rest of the day were given. Everyone met back up at Mt. Hood Ski Bowl for a day of fun. The main activities included an alpine slide, mini golf, trampolines, and bungee jumping. By the end of the afternoon everyone was exhausted and began heading home.
The event greatly impressed the Forest Service, brought participants from as far as Texas, hosted the Central Region Chief and National Vice Chief, and got positive media attention from across the country. The event would not have been possible without the dedication and support of all those on staff, along with all of the fantastic scouts who participated. Thank you for the work you did to make this dream a reality. For those that attended, and those that didn’t, I look forward to seeing you again at ArrowCorps 2019. Long live ArrowCorps.
Yours In Service, Chance Sloan Wauna La-Mon’tay Lodge ArrowCorps 2016 Chairman