Eagle Scouts Return from High Adventure Trek in Minnesota

BSA Troop 53
Jun 30 2006
Posted In: News

Eagle Scouts Daniel and Dusty Albertine have recently returned from a 2-week, high adventure, canoe trip in the Minnesota Boundary Waters. As members of Troop 53, Castleton, both boys have participated in troop canoe trips in the Adirondacks, which helped prepare them for this trip.

The two Eagles participated in an Order of the Arrow (OA) Trek, in which they worked for one week on portage trail maintenance and then continued on with one week of “trekking”, or exploring the vast wilderness, to complete their trip. A “portage” is where canoes and gear must be carried over land from one lake to another, or around an obstacle, such as rapids or a waterfall.

Daniel and Dusty are both members of the Boy Scouts honor camper society, known as the Order of the Arrow, which members are elected, become candidates, and then must fulfill a weekend-long ordeal to become members. Daniel is a “Vigil” member and Dusty a “Brotherhood” member of Haudenosaunee Lodge 19, which serves the same area as the local BSA Twin Rivers Council, Inc.

After flying to Minnesota and traveling 5 hours by van to the BSA’s Charles L. Sommers High Adventure Base, the brothers were put into separate “crews” to start their adventure. Each crew consisted of 6 OA members or “arrowmen”, along with two adult guides or “foreman”, also arrowmen. They paddled out to their first location and stayed for one week, while getting down to the muddy business of trail repair. Each crew took a stretch of muddy portage trail and filled it with stone that they crushed by hand, to make passage both safer and easier.

That task completed, they took off exploring the vast Minnesota/Canadian border area, along the way the two were treated to spectacular sunsets, scenic vistas, Native American “pictographs”, and wildlife sightings, such as Bald Eagles and a cow moose with her twin calves. Although they did visit some of the same locations along the way, their paths crossed only once in their two-week excursion, when the brothers got to share dinner and a campsite for the night.

Their final night in base camp they were treated to a banquet, with guest speaker Dustin Counts, the OA Southeastern Region Chief. Not willing to let he office get him preferential treatment from him fellow arrowmen, Dustin chose to travel “incognito”, so that he might better get to know his fellow arrowmen. Dustin Counts was a member of Daniel’s crew.

The boys returned, bearded and well-tanned from two week’s exposure, with 3 CD’s full of memories, since each photographer downloaded and shared their photos before parting ways.

A future goal of the brothers is to try to complete an “OA Triple Crown” by attending an OA Trek at all three High Adventure Bases: New Mexico’s Philmont Scouting Ranch, Florida’s SeaBase and Minnesota’s Wilderness Trek.