Into the Great Wide Under -> Lava Style

A half-dozen of our hardiest scouts braved cold outside weather (55 degrees overnight!! – yeah!), daily thunderstorms, and even colder inside weather (as low as 42 degrees underground – double yeah!!), as we joined the half of the Valley of the Sun looking for heat relief in the clouds of Coconino Forest – in the forest surrounding Lava River Cave.  The scouts wore helmets (good thing – I hit my head 6 times) and jackets (the aforementioned 42 degrees) and they got an early start being the only ones crawling slowly into the mile long tube formed 700,000 years ago by a flow of molten rock erupting from a volcanic vent.  The top, sides and bottom cooled first, and for a matter of a few more hours the lava river continued to flow until emptying out of the cave that remains.  Getting in is extremely steep, narrow and rocky, but then it opens into quite the wonderland.  After a rousing few hours of exploration, the rest of the Valley was beginning to join us, so it was back out of the cave for an afternoon of doing good deeds, culinary miracles, and hammock Olympics.  It truly was impressive that a couple scouts discovered a sweet, very friendly but confused shepherd mix dog with a broken leash whose owners had gone missing, and spent until well after lunch time with Remington asking everyone they came in contact with if he was theirs.  With no takers, they waited by the entrance until finally his very appreciative owner emerged. The culinary miracles were how absolutely delicious the scout’s dutch oven meals turned out after somehow not managing to bring a number of the original recipe ingredients.  Creativity is ALMOST as good as pre-planning and execution!    The remainder of the day before dinner and an early bedtime was simply putting up, playing with, and talking around a set of hammocks.  Ahhh – the wonderful, simple things in a boy’s life out of doors!

Next month we’ll help staff R-Boo-C again up at Cub Scout camp, with T648 setting up and running a bunch of the scary, slimy booths that the younger scouts enjoy all day Saturday the 7th of October.  Hope to see most of you there!

Downing a box of donut holes before going into the hole
Into the great wide under
The Rogues Gallery of T648 spelunkers
During the day it’s a baby horned toad, last night he had a stick bug sitting there!
This isn’t the way we drew up double bunking
T648 2023 Hammock Olympics
Only in a T648 campout would one find a bass ukulele!