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Boy Scout Troop 49
(Oconomowoc, Wisconsin)
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National Outdoor Awards

National Outdoor Awards for Camping, Aquatics, Conservation, Hiking, Riding, and Adventure

Do you enjoy camping under the stars, rafting a whitewater river, or hitting the trail afoot, on a bike, or even on a horse? Can you pitch a tent, find your way, and bandage an ankle using only materials in your pack? Are you prepared to do any of these in rain, snow, sleet, or heat? If so, the National Outdoor Awards are for you. There is nothing virtual about these awards—you can earn them only by demonstrating knowledge and experience in the outdoors.

So, if you are a Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, Sea Scout, or Venturer, and think you are tough and disciplined enough to hike or ride the miles, camp the nights, run the rivers or lakes, or do the work to conserve the land, then read on and see if the National Outdoor badges or possibly the National Medal for Outdoor Achievement could be for you! When a Scout excels in outdoor participation, there are awards to show for it!

This program, conceived by the BSA's National Camping Task Force, includes a series of six badges designed to recognize a Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, Sea Scout, or Venturer who has exemplary knowledge and experience in performing high-level outdoor activities. The award consists of up to six emblem segments positioned around the perimeter of a beautiful center emblem. All are embroidered in full color. The segments represent six areas of emphasis: Camping, Aquatics, Conservation, Hiking, Riding, and Adventure, with rigorous requirements to earn each segment. The center emblem features an outdoor scene with fleur-de-lis and the words "National Outdoor Awards."
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National Outdoor Award.pdf  

National Medal for Outdoor Achievement

The National Medal for Outdoor Achievement is the highest recognition that a Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, Sea Scout, or Venturer can earn for exemplary achievement, experience, and skill in multiple areas of outdoor endeavor.

In order for a youth to earn the National Medal for Outdoor Achievement, he or she must complete the following requirements:
  • Earn the Boy Scout First Class rank, Sea Scout Apprentice rank, or complete Venturing Ranger Award requirements 1-6 and hold the Venturing Discovery Award.
  • Earn the National Outdoor Badge for Camping with a silver device.
  • Earn any two additional National Outdoor Badges, each with two gold devices.
Complete the requirements for all of the following:
  • Backpacking merit badge or Ranger Backpacking elective;
  • Emergency Preparedness merit badge or Ranger Emergency Preparedness core;
  • Nature merit badge;
  • and Wilderness Survival merit badge or Ranger Wilderness Survival core.
Complete a 16-hour course in Wilderness First Aid from the American Red Cross, Wilderness Medical Institute, or other recognized provider.

Become a Leave No Trace Trainer by completing the 16-hour training course from a recognized Leave No Trace Master Educator.

Plan and lead, with the approval of your unit leader, an outing for your troop, team, ship, crew patrol, or squad in two of the following activity areas:
  • hiking and backpacking, aquatics activities, or riding.
  • Include in each outing a service element addressing recreational impacts resulting from that type of activity.
  • With the approval of your unit leader, you may plan and lead the outings for another Cub Scout pack, Boy Scout troop, Varsity Scout team, Sea Scout ship, or Venturing crew.
Complete at least one of the following:
  • Plan and lead, with the approval of your unit leader, an adventure activity identified in the National Outdoor Badge for Adventure for your troop, team, ship, crew, patrol, or squad.
  • Successfully complete a season on a council summer camp staff in an outdoor area, such as aquatics, Scoutcraft, nature/environment, climbing, or COPE.