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The most important essential is not on a list, "Common Sense". Having the right gear is one thing, knowing how and when to use it is quite another. Most often, it's not a person's equipment that saves their bacon it's their experience, know-how, and good judgment.
Conversely, it is generally inexperience and lack of good judgment that gets people into trouble. Not only must we have the proper equipment -- including the ten essentials -- and know how to use them, but we must also cultivate knowledge and wisdom related to the backcountry activities that we engage in--thru self-study, courses, and leveraging off the experiences of others.
Below is a BSA's Ten Essentials along with basic camping supplies. Be sure to check out the "Camping" section on the Forms & Downloads page for a more comprehensive list.
The kids may want to have all kinds of neat, exotic, and often expensive outdoor gear.
Here are the initial essentials (with a full detailed list HERE with more camping resources on our Forms & Downloads page):
Backpack / Daypack to keep your 10 essentials, mess kit and water bottle in
Mess kit (Plate, Bowl, Knife, Fork, Spook and Cup)
Sleeping bag and pad
Waterproof hiking boots (that have been worn a few time prior to camping or hiking trip)
Gloves & Hat (beanie)
Tents, cooking gear, lanterns, tarps, etc. are all provided by the Troop Quartermaster. Patrols draw needed gear prior to each event, use it, clean it, and return it afterwards. See one of the older Scouts or an adult leader if you have equipment questions, we're always willing to "talk gear." Weather in Colorado changes often and changes rapidly so boys and volunteers need to Be Prepared for sudden weather changes. Dress in layers and always be equipped to handle a sudden drop in temperature.
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