SWEETWATER — Boy Scouts from all over the west are pouring into new Steve Fossett Spirit of Adventure Base Camp to “catch the adventure bug” that governed Fossett’s life.
Fossett, an adventurer and Eagle Scout, set 115 world aviation records. The Beaver Creek resident credited the Boy Scouts with helping him learn to chase adventure.
“As a Scout, I learned how to set goals and achieve them,” Fossett said repeatedly during his life. “Being a Scout also taught me leadership at a young age where there were few opportunities to be a leader.”
The Steve Fossett Spirit of Adventure Base Camp is one of only four high adventure Boy Scout camps around the country. It will also be the first time in a decade and a half that the Boy Scouts of America’s Western Colorado Council will have its own summer camp.
“Our Scouts have been scattered in camps across the country every summer because there has not been an option here on the Western Slope, so this is a homecoming of sorts,” said Mark Switzer, scout executive and CEO of the Western Colorado Council.
The camp is located near the confluence of the Colorado River and Sweetwater Creek. Scouts ages 11 years and older can have adventures ranging from mountain biking, orienteering and backpacking to Class IV whitewater, climbing fourteeners and hut-to-hut trips.
Fossett’s world records include the first solo nonstop round-the-world aircraft flight and the first solo nonstop round-the-world balloon flight, as well as records for gliding and sailing. He also completed the Boston Marathon, the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii, Alaska’s Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race and the Leadville Trail 100. He swam the English Channel and scaled the highest peaks on six of the seven continents.
He disappeared while flying above the Sierra Nevada mountains on Sept. 3, 2007.
His widow, Peggy Fossett, donated $50,000 to establish the camp in his name and issued a $50,000 challenge grant that the Scouts are about to match.
When Fossett was inducted into the Aviation Hall of Fame, he said this: “Set your goals high, put your team together, figure out how you’re going to do it and get it done.” That’s now etched onto a plaque in the dining hall, to regularly remind Boy Scouts that there is no secret to success.
Anderson Camp site
The Scouts worked out a five-year lease on the Anderson Camp north of Dotsero. Anderson Camp had operated from 1962 to 2012, but it didn’t operate last year and the Boy Scouts took it over this year.
The Boy Scouts have a five-year lease on the camp.
Every Scout will have the opportunity to go on an off-site high adventure. Glenwood Adventure Co. will provide professional guides for many of the adventures, including whitewater rafting, kayaking, horseback riding and ATV excursions.
Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and email@example.com.