Scott Robertson

Returning to the Summit
By: Posted On: 2014-06-05

After two weeks at the National Scout Jamboree, I’m finally getting used to hot-water showers and a real bed again!

Although it was not without its challenges, the Jamboree was a great event, and it showed the potential of the Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia as a major new high-adventure destination. Programming at SBR will be very different from programming at the BSA’s other high-adventure bases, however.

First, the trips will be shorter (just one week), making it easy for adult leaders to arrange vacation time. Given that 60 to 70 percent of Americans live within a day’s drive of the Summit, we’re talking just one week of vacation time instead of two.

Second, participants will be live in one of SBR’s base camps and, in most cases, travel back and forth to program areas each day. Think summer camp on steroids.

Third, the program offerings will be nothing like Philmont, Northern Tier, and Florida Sea Base.

So what can you do at the Summit? Here are the program options for 2014:

  • The River: Kayaking and whitewater rafting
  • Helmets and Harnesses: Rock climbing, rappelling, and canopy tours
  • The Marksman: Rifle, pistol, shotgun, and archery
  • Wheels: Mountain biking, BMX, and skateboarding
  • The Summit Experience: Half-day tastes of nine adventure sports venues
  • Adventure Photography: A week of photography instruction and field days with professional photographers

All six programs are available for troops, crews, council contingents, and individual participants (who will join provisional units). For dates, prices, and more information, download the 2014 program brochure from or visit