Equipment & Personal Gear
Equipment lists abound and no two are alike. In addition, Scouting finances can be daunting, particularly initially. While Scouting is really no more expensive than many other activities, such as contact sports, the “start-up” cost can be intimidating. This page is designed to guide what to buy and help you locate quality gear.
Some online resources to consider:
- www.alpsmountaineering.com offers sleeping bags, self-inflatable pads, backpacks, and other equipment at a quality level that is near impossible to match for the price. Alps Mountaineering offers Boy Scouts a 45% discount through a companion site at www.scoutdirect.com. They are highly recommended. Much our our Troop gear is from Alps Mountaineering/ScoutDirect. See what Boys’ Life magazine says about Alps Mountaineering here.
- Campmor is a dependable web site and if they have what you are looking for, it is probably reasonably priced.
- REI Online and REI Outlet Online
- Gander Mountain
Some local resources to consider:
- Trail House, located at 17 South Market Street, is a local backpacking store with quality equipment. Mention you are a Scout for a 10% discount.
- Trailside Outfitters, located at 44 Sauder Road in Brunswick, has some official BSA merchandise (uniforms, patches, merit badge pamphlets, etc.) and camping gear.
- Bass Pro Shops has a large store in Arundel Mills Shopping Center and REI has a large store in Gaithersburg so you can see and touch what you are purchasing.
The first campout—Highest priority equipment
Upon joining the Troop and prior to attending his first camping trip, each Scout will need the following:
- Class A and Class B uniforms
- Boy Scout Handbook, pen, and notebook
- Lightweight, synthetic-filled, mummy style sleeping bag, 30° or lower rating (recommend Scoutdirect.com)
- Sleeping pad, foam or self-inflating (recommend Scoutdirect.com)
- Mess kit (we recommend NOT getting the bulky metal mess kit, rather get a strong collapsible bowl and a collapsible cup)
- Eating utensils (a plastic “spork” works great)
- High quality rain gear (jacket and pants, don't buy a poncho)
- Water bottle (recommend some type of Nalgene bottle—it’s nearly indestructible)
- Small personal first aid kit/survival kit
- Camp chair
- Personal hygiene bag with toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, comb, etc.
- Duffle bag (or similar) for packing their clothes and equipment
There is additional equipment that is lower priority but still needed, probably within the first six months:
- Good quality hiking boots, water proof is best (Also need heavy, non-cotton hiking socks)
- High quality compass (recommend Silva, Suunto, or similar)
- Backpack (internal or external frame) (recommend Scoutdirect.com)
- LED Headlamp
- Pocket knife (Scouts can’t carry one until they earn their Totin’ Chip)
Please see the attachment below: Personal Gear List for more details, recommended models, etc.
The Troop provides tents to all youth members. Adult volunteers are asked to provide their own tent. (We recommend the Alps Mountaineering Taurus Outfitter tent. A 2-man tent lets you sleep comfortably and have your equipment in the tent with you.)
The Troop maintains an inventory of other equipment including dining tarps, cooking equipment, and other camping gear. This equipment is purchased from the proceeds of Troop fund-raising activities and the annual registration fees. The Scoutmaster may appoint an Assistant Scoutmaster to oversee the Troop’s equipment if he deems it necessary.
Boys’ Life Gear Buying Guides
Before you shop, learn what to look for by checking out the Gear Buying Guides from Boys’ Life magazine- The Official Publication of the Boy Scouts of America.
The Boy Scout Outdoor (Ten) Essentials
Any time a Scout goes on a camping trip or hike, he should always be prepared by carrying the following ten essential items in his pack. These essentials will allow a scout to survive in the outdoors in most emergency situations.
- Pocketknife (when you complete Totin’ Chip training) or multipurpose tool
- First-aid kit
- Extra clothing
- Headlamp or Flashlight (with extra batteries)
- Rain gear
- Water bottle, filled (1 liter)
- Map and compass (and watch, preferably)
- Matches/Fire starter (when you complete Firem'n Chit training)
- Sun protection and sunglasses
- Trail food
Recommended beyond "the Ten":
- Signal mirror
- Insect repellant
- Toilet paper (small roll)
Here’s an article on what you need—and why, from Boys' Life - The Official Publication of the Boy Scouts of America.
Personal First-Aid Kit
- 6 adhesive bandages
- 2 sterile, 3-by-3-inch gauze pads
- a small roll of adhesive tape
- a 3-by6-inch piece of moleskin
- a small bar of soap or a small bottle of alcohol-based hand sanitizing get
- a small tube of triple antibiotic ointment
- disposable non-latex gloves
- CPR breathing barrier
- pencil and paper
Here’s a first-aid buying guide, from Boys' Life - The Official Publication of the Boy Scouts of America.