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The Winter Camping Experience

Whether it's chopping wood or hiking the trails, the winter camp experience offers something different for everyone. Cold weather camping, rifle shooting and orienteering courses are but a few of the other activities that round out Winter Camping at HSR.

Edited by Andrew Coe  [Contribute Info]

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Winter Camping Pictures

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Snowed In!

This article appeared in the Winter 2007 issue of the HSRAA's The Octoraro Loop.  Thanks to Clarke Palmer for his account of this 1966 Troop 43 winter camp experience.
1966 - Contributed by John B. Rettew III  [Contribute Info] 


A CH-47 Chinook lands on the Camp Horseshoe Parade Field to shuttle stranded campers home to West Chester.

1966 - Contributed by Anonymous
 As we look forward to our long winter we Scouts and Scouters are undeterred by weather. After all we learn to take care of ourselves, to Be Prepared, in the out-of-doors regardless of rain or snow we are Prepared! In this case, it REALLY SNOWED!

We thank Palmer Clarke of Troop 43 of West Chester for this experience at Camp Horseshoe winter camp many years ago with the article appearing in the Daily Local News in 1966.

Snow Rescuers Use Copters, Tank

They were bogged down, snowed-in and otherwise in trouble through this area Monday, and rescuers went after them with everything from helicopters to Army tanks. Among those in need of rescuing were campers, motorists, bus passengers and expectant mothers.

The Vertol Division of Boeing Co. in Morton sent a military helicopter to airlift 68 Boy Scouts from their snowed-in camp back to West Chester.


Following the Scout motto of "Be Prepared", Troop 43, of West Chester, left Friday night for their annual winter camping trip at Horseshoe Camp, Rising Sun, Md., just over the Mason- Dixon Line, equipped with food, fuel and warm clothing.

Scouts of Troop 43 are returned safely to the Henderson High School field after being snowed in at Camp Horseshoe.

1966 - Contributed by Anonymous
Heavy (snow) drifts blocked the camp roads in the storm but the scouts didn't mind too much. However, parents began to worry and someone contacted the Morton plant.

Vertol officials first got military clearance then sent a CH-47 Chinook copter of the type used by the U.S. Army to the camp.


Twenty-four scouts and six of the eight parents on the camping trip made the first lift from the Horseshoe camp to the Henderson High School football field in West Chester, arriving at 1:30 P.M. The copter flew back immediately for the remaining scouts and adults, including Scoutmaster Harvey Rettew. (The article relates other rescues by helicopter and a tank of marooned people and an expectant mother.)

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Winter Camping Videos


For the BSA 100th Anniversary, several original merit badges were offered. Here, counselor Matt Lewis works with some Scouts to evaluate their video evidence of animals for the Tracking merit badge. 

2010 - Contributed by Andrew Coe  [Contribute Info] 
Cub Scouts raise the American flag in Roberts campsite during Winter Camp.
2015 - Contributed by Anonymous  [Contribute Info] 
Real chemical rockets are set off on the Athletic Field during Troop 73's winter camp outing at Camp Horseshoe.  

2013 - Contributed by Thomas Savoy  [Contribute Info] 

Here is a time-lapse of the first snow of 2011, perfect for... winter camping!

2011 - Contributed by Andrew Coe  [Contribute Info] 
This Scout tries his luck at Tomahawk throwing during Winter Camp at Camp Horseshoe. 

2015 - Contributed by Anonymous  [Contribute Info] 
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Snowshoe Making

Tom Murphy lead a bunch of pioneers in creating real usable snowshoes at the Camp Ranger Office in December 2011.
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Young Marines

Not just for Scouting groups . . . our camps play host to other organizations. Case in point, the Hamilton Young Marines out of the Baltimore, MD area joined us the weekend of February 20, 2009. Staying at Camp Ware, they took advantage of the facilities at both camps. Here the youth participated in team building activities supported by Chester County Council Crew 23. The Young Marines had an outstanding time!

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Christmas at Camp

Brian White and Leigh Sifford decorated the Camp Horseshoe Rossiter Center for Christmas during a winter camping weekend - December 13-15, 2013.
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