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Boy Scouts successfully complete 165-mile Missouri River canoe trek

July 19, 2015
TSHAB Contingent #2 launching from Little Sioux Scout Ranch dock.

Tri-State High Adventure Base Contingent #2 launching from Little Sioux Scout Ranch dock.

(Omaha, NE – July 17) –  After canoeing 165-miles down the Missouri River from Vermilion, SD, the second Boy Scout Tri-State High Adventure Base (TSHAB) contingent landed in Omaha immediately south of the Bob Kerry Pedestrian Bridge at the Lewis & Clark Landing dock Friday afternoon, July 17, 2015.

TSHAB1 Canoes pass under BKP BridgeThis summer is the inaugural year for the TSHAB canoe treks. The first TSHAB excursion occurred June 22-26 with four Boy Scouts and two leaders in the contingent.  After five days on the river, It was a moving experience to witness the Scouts paddling down the mighty Missouri river nearing the landing, and hearing the mighty cheer of their families and friends lining the Bob Kerry Pedestrian Bridge as the Scouts passed under.

There were seven Boy Scouts and three trek leaders in the second contingent.  They put in at Vermilion, SD on Monday, July 13, and landed this Friday, July 17 at the Omaha Lewis & Clark Landing dock immediately south of the Bob Kerry Pedestrian Bridge.  Not only was it a historic moment for TSHAB and the Boy Scouts of America, Mid-America Council to successfully complete the adventure, but the looks on the faces of the Scouts was breathless!

Between the two contingents, participants hailed from Venture Crew 141 in Nebraska City, Troop 28 in North Sioux City, Troop 104 in Fremont, Troop 463 in Papilion, Troop 42 in Omaha, and Troop 143 in Blair.

TSHAB Crew #1 docking canoes at the Lewis & Clark Landing in Omaha.

TSHAB Contingent #1 docking canoes at the Lewis & Clark Landing in Omaha.

The Tri-State High Adventure Base is aptly named representing the three states, Nebraska, Iowa, and South Dakota served the Scouting program by the Mid-America Council, Boy Scouts of America.  The Mid-America Council (MAC) is ranked as a premier Scouting council nationwide and encompasses 58 counties in the three states.  The addition of a high adventure base further enhances MAC by providing Boy Scouts, Venturers, and leaders throughout the region and nationwide a unique, unparalleled experience.

High adventurers get to experience the Loess Hills.  Not only are they beautiful, but the glacier-ground soil and wind-driven land composition of the Loess Hills is only found along a 200-mile stretch of the Missouri River from South Dakota to Missouri, and in Shaanxi, China.

Canoeists also get to experience a piece of history traveling 165-miles of the Lewis & Clark Trail along the Missouri River.  The TSHAB trek allows Boy Scouts to visit state parks and historical landmarks along the river including Fort Atkinson State Historical Park, DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge, Lewis & Clark State Park where a floating replica of the Lewis & Clark Keelboat is on display, The Sergeant Floyd Memorial Lewis & Clark “An American Adventure” exhibit at the Sergeant Floyd Welcome Center/Riverboat Museum and Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center, and also the Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail Visitor Center in Omaha.

TSHAB Contingent #2 at Lewis & Clark Landing docks in Omaha.

TSHAB Contingent #2 docking canoes at Lewis & Clark Landing in Omaha.

When asked how it was canoeing on the Missouri River for five days, the boys agreed with Star Scout Michael Wzorek from Troop 42 who replied, “It was fun!  The river is not scary. One day we went 40-miles and I got a little tired, but it was easy to paddle.  I would do it again!”

“As much fun as it is – it’s safety first!” stated Program Director Mike Evano. “Before the contingent gets on the river, they must complete comprehensive training sessions which include how to handle a canoe, river navigation, Emergency First Aide, and more. The Missouri River current runs about two to four-miles per hour.  The speed of travel for a canoe depends on river current, wind, and paddling.”

After docking, packing up the canoes and gear on the trailer, Dan Elder treated the contingents to ice cream at Ted & Wally’s in the Old Market downtown Omaha.  The next stop was returning to TSHAB camp at Little Sioux Scout Ranch for a steak dinner, showers and a good nights sleep!

“Next year we are planning for five excursions throughout the summer,” shared Evano.  If you would like to receive information about the 2016 TSHAB treks and be placed on a registration list, please contact Mike Evano at 402-431-9272.

Resources:

Tri-State High Adventure Base information flier – http://www.mac-bsa.org/Post/sections/84/Files/TSHAB%20Flier%201%202014-10.pdf

Visit the Little Sioux Scout Ranch Facebook page to view daily photos of the TSHAB treks in progress.  Scroll down the timeline for photo posts.  https://www.facebook.com/LittleSiouxScoutRanch/timeline

Loess Hills of Western Iowa – http://pubs.usgs.gov/info/loess/

Loess Hills of China – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loess_Plateau

About the Boy Scouts of America, Mid-America Council:

The Boy Scouts of America, Mid-America Council serves more than 20,814 youth through the volunteer leadership of more than 7,017 registered adult leaders throughout 58 counties in Nebraska, Iowa, and South Dakota.  It is the vision of the council to provide unparalleled experiences to more youth.  Unparalleled experiences create value, enthusiasm, robust growth and retention of program participants. Scouting in Mid-America Council offers families fun and adventurous things to do. This fun and adventure helps youth develop leadership skills and values important to good citizenship and service to others.  For more information, please visit www.mac-bsa.org.

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