Boy Scout Troop 157
Weston, Massachusetts

Outdoor Adventure

Double H Ranch

Double HDouble H

Double H High Adventure Expedition- July 21 – 31, 2007

Double H High Adventure Base is located about 100 miles southwest of Albuquerque, NM, within the Cibola National Forest.  Double H offered a rugged southwestern experience in over 100,000 acres, defined by the plains of San Augustine meeting the Gelinas mountain range.  So it possesses expansive grasslands along the south and mountain elevations up to 7,000 feet, running East to West along the northern edge of the reserve. Natural beauty abounds throughout.  At the East edge of this National Forest rests the famous Very Large Array National Radio Astronomy Observatory.

Double H was unique in that it possessed no trail system and all travel was via map and compass, and GPS.  Although there was a utility road system, crews were strongly encouraged to ignore them.  This offered a totally different experience of negotiating the forest, finding water, and setting the campsites.  Crews were also more closely engaged within the forest and wildlife where all were free to travel any course along their way.

A crew of 9 scouts and 2 adults set off from Logan Airport to Albuquerque, NM for the start of their 10-day adventure.  They included Alex K, Alex Y, Robby H, Tom W, Mir B, Andrew F, Michael W, Nick H, Spencer I, with Mr Lee and Mr Heath.  Prior to hitting Double H, the crew, and Ms Iuliano (she joined the crew for the first few days of adventure) spent 4 days at the Route 66 Hostel.  It was our home base while we created some adventurous memories rafting the Rio Grande Gorge; hitting Sandia Peak (10,378 ft); touring the Petraglyph National Monument; and visiting the Bandera Ice Caves, a remnant of a large volcanic crater and lava flow.  Our stay at Route 66 included the extensive sampling of the local Mexican cuisine.

Then off to Double H High Adventure Base to run the East-to West loop along the Gelinas Mountain Range over 6 days.  Map and compass skills were quickly put to the test, but we landed a camp 1 and joined the many “wild cows” to enjoy camp cooking and spend the night.  Our next 2 days sent us heading westward to land at Martin Camp.  Here we joined other crews to enjoy some crew-made ice cream, an intense Frisbee tournament (with our crew guide succumbing to heat stroke), and a staff-made rodeo dinner.   Next morning, we departed Martin Camp and continued west.  Here we entered the region with more rainfall, better water, and taller, green trees and vegetation.  Ponderosa Pine was the predominant tree, whereas pine shrubs marked the east region.  Weather continued to be ideal with cool nights and 80 – 90F days.  Map and compass skills were much improved and travel efficiencies picked-up.  Two days later, we were landing at base camp to return gear, purchase some mementos, and head to Denny’s for a very large lunch – the reward at the end of the expedition.  Once engorged, we were off the airport to return to Weston with a great collection of memories.  Spencer and Ms Iuliano returned to Weston 2 days later, having driven cross-country from Albuquerque.  Photos of this trek can be viewed in our photo gallery.  Troop 157 crew members returned to the southwest, at Philmont Ranch in 2008.