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Why the Outdoors

Outdoor adventure is the promise made to young people when they join Scouting. Boys and girls yearn for outdoor programs that stir their imagination and interest.

In the Outdoors we strive to meet the Aims of Scouting.

Character Development:

In the outdoors, Scouts have opportunities to acquire skills that make them more self-reliant. They can explore canoe and hiking trails and complete challenges they first thought were beyond their ability. Attributes of good character become part of them as they learn to cooperate to meet outdoor challenges that may include extreme weather, difficult trails and portages, and dealing with nature’s unexpected circumstances.


Good youth leadership, communication, and teamwork enable them to achieve goals they have set for themselves, their patrol, and their troop. This working together through the patrol and troop teaches active citizenship. 

Personal Fitness:

Scouts are challenged in the outdoor adventure and high adventure and are pushed physically and mentally to accomplish tasks of the outdoors. 


Scouts plan and carry out activities from start to finish. With thoughtful guidance from their Scoutmaster and other adult leaders scouts make a plan and carry out this plan. Learning by doing is a hallmark of outdoor education. A youth or adult leader may describe and demonstrate a Scouting skill at a weekly meeting, but the way Scouts truly learn outdoor skills is to do it themselves on a troop outing.

Trail to Adventure Blog

For the latest articles and information about the Outdoor Programs of the BSA subscribe to the Trail to Adventure blog or visit the site at https://www.scouting.org/outdoor-programs/trail-to-adventure/

Outdoor Programs & Properties Manual

Your one stop for all council outdoor program information, with links to all current resources. Replaces the Camp Program & Property Management guide. DOWNLOAD THE OUTDOOR PROGRAMS & PROPERTIES MANUAL

Camp Director Resource Page

This is a resource page designed specifically for Camp Directors. You will find information on a variety of topics and it will be updated often. Click here to go the page. 

BSA Chain Saw Training

The release of the updated BSA Chain Saw Training is here. 

Program Quality Evaluation Tool (PQET)

Councils can evaluate and improve their outdoor and camp programs using this self evaluation tool.  Your Scouts deserve the best! LEARN MORE


Contact the Outdoor Programs and Properties Team

Not sure who to ask – Check out the – OP-P Info Sheet (5-13-20)

High Water Hazard Advisory

Please read the High Water Advisory and urge all BSA program leaders operating on moving water to view the video “Reading The Rhythms of Rivers and Rapids” available on the Aquatics Program page.