Growing up, I spend a week every summer at Camp Geiger as a young boy scout, became a member of the honorary Mic-o-say tribe and attended many Jamboree. I ended up leaving Boy Scouts as a Life Scout.
Many of the basic skills that I learned as a Boy Scouts are things that I used in life as a adult. I use everything from how to shoot a bow and arrow to swimming to forestry often today. I could have learn this somewhere else but I learned them mainly as a Boy Scout and member of a 4-H club in Missouri.
Every Monday night for many years, I would walk from my house to the Methodist church on St. Joseph Ave where we would meet for a few hours and work on our merit badges. It was my life on Monday all the way into high school.
On the second weekend of the month, all the leaders would pack up their pickups with gear and the whole troop would go camping at a state park somewhere in Missouri or Kansas. In the middle of a blizzard in January, we would still be out there camping like we was in the summer.
What is Last Kodiak?
One of the main advanced training course in Scouting is called Kodiak. It is done in the wilderness and it is about leadership development. It is pretty much a course that every Boy Scout will take at some point.
This website is in a way like that. We want to be the Kodiak where people can come and learn how to grow in their skills but also can get practical advice on how to travel around America. Unlike some, I still have a deep love for America and everything it stands for.
The other thing about Kodiak is it was relationship building. You would meet people from different walks of life and from many different places. Some of them you would only know for a few days and some of them would be people you would run into at other Boy Scouts events for many years. In the same way, I want the website to be a place where people can learn from each other.
The third thing about doing Kodiak was the living off the grid for a few days to a week. It was the whole camping experience. We want to be a place that people learn to see the country and not be tied down to just hotels, motels and being in urban America. I am a city boy but I want have the skill set of a country boy as well. I want this to be a place where people can learn both.
I guess that pretty much would sum it up what we are about: education, community and adventure.
How this website got started?
There was a man that lived in the Philippines (American man) that told me (wrongly) that 90% of America’s youth can not survive a 72 hour scenario. The problem with this thinking is wrong on many levels.
In defense, he send me about a half a dozen links of articles that has different studies (none of them being anywhere close to the 90% he claimed). However, some of the numbers that these article did say were concerning to put it lightly.
One of them that was especially alarming was that over half of the boys that they asked could not tie basic knots. This seems to be high but it did remind me that our youth are not as in tune with the outdoors and the basic skills I learn in Boy Scouts Jamboree.
Another alarming thing in these articles was a claim that up to 44% of our youth have never been camping. This is hard for me to believe and I do not think they asked the people in small town Missouri. However, if the true number is anything close to that, it should concern us all.
I do not believe for one minute the numbers in these articles. I also do not give any thought to the wild 90% claim of this man. The reason I know these to not be true is I have been to Camp Geiger and saw the youth of America doing everything these people claim they can’t.
What to expect from Last Kodiak
We want to give you sound help to explore the country. This could include places to eat or even how to cook over a campfire as well. It might be about seeing something historical or visiting a state park as well. No matter what it is, we want it to be about education, community and adventure.
We will seek to give you information from anywhere that Old Glory is raised. This will include all fifty states of the union. The bulk of the information will be in the 48 continental states, however. For international travel, click here.
Admittedly, we will have more information in the Mid-west United States than in other areas. The reason for this we are Missourians and it is easier for us to travel to locations that are within a few hours of us than it is for to drive to Alaska or Maine.
One thing we are planning is to work with some brands that would interest our readers for some giveaways and discounts. This is still in the works and I am not sure that will play out at this point. This will be posted on the website and on Facebook when they happen.
I truly hope that Last Kodiak is a useful website and it really helps you to be educated, relational and adventitious in America in the coming days. That is the whole point, after all!
Make sure to find us at the World Scout Jamboree in West Virginia in 2019 too!