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Boy Scout Troop 406 experiences Sea Base adventure

| December 10, 2015

scout tripCOSHOCTON – In July, six members of Coshocton’s Boy Scout Troop 406, based at Burt Avenue Wesleyan Church, participated in a Boy Scouts of America High Adventure experience at Sea Base on Islamorada Key in Florida. The scout participants were John Brems, Shane Deeds, Jacob Heading, Brennan McClain, Richard Paynter, and Austin Weller. Scout leaders Tom Heading and Jason Weller accompanied the scouts on their adventure.

The group flew from Pittsburgh to Fort Lauderdale and picked up a van to drive to Big Pine Key where they stayed for three nights. During their stay there, they traveled to Key West and the Everglades to see the sites and visited a sea turtle rescue and rehabilitation facility on Marathon Key.

The scouts checked into Sea Base on July 22 where they received an orientation, met their boat captain, Brennan, and first saw the Midnight Dragon, a 41-foot sailing ketch where they would spend the next five days and nights. They set out for the waters of the Florida Keys that night. They sailed during the day, stopping at reefs to snorkel. They did some fishing along the way with limited success. Everyone took turns steering the boat, handling the sails, cooking, and cleaning. The boat anchored out at night except for one day in the middle of the week when they returned to Sea Base to unload trash and take on additional water and provisions.

The weather was good, with rain only on the day they came in to resupply. While the winds were light most of the time, one day, they were great for sailing, and Midnight Dragon answered the call, providing an exhilarating sailing experience which the boys called, “Awesome”. The boat and crew returned to Sea Base on July 27 where personal gear was unloaded and the boat was cleaned for the next crew. A night stay in the dorm at Sea Base and a luau completed their experience, and they flew back to Pittsburgh the next day. Everyone really enjoyed their adventure.

This experience taught the boys how to live and work together in cramped surroundings. It taught them what it takes to operate a sailboat safely, and they learned about the ecology of the Florida Keys.

The Sea Base experience was two years in the planning because access to the program is by lottery as demand exceeds supply. The scouts and their leaders accumulated sufficient funds so that any scout who was qualified could attend regardless of ability to pay. The scouts thank the many people and organizations who helped make this adventure possible.

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Category: Clubs & Organizations

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