Opinion article by GeoJewett
If you have not watched the "Are you tougher than a Boys Scout?" on the National Geographic channel - it is a fun and entertaining show especially if you have scouts in your family! They really get into the show and relate to the activities and are cheering for both sides (adults and scouts).
However, on the March 18th, I was very disappointed that the Boy Scouts and the directors on the show did not follow the rules of Geocaching for the Geocaching Merit Badge and predominately showed that scouts and adults having to dig to locate a Geocache! You are allowed to place the cache on the ground and stack rocks or other concealing materials on top, but you should never need to use a shovel to get to the cache.
I knew it was going to be bad when the two things they had to find in the sinking row boat was a shovel and a GPS, when the prefaced the challenge stating they were going to use the skills from the Geocaching merit badge!
I was hoping they would include some really cool on the spot puzzle based caches to further challenge the scouts to obtain a pair of binoculars and a key to a ski-do, as they did in the previous challenges with the 6-questions. However, every cache was marked on the ground with a X made with rocks, which they needed to clear and then dig to expose the cache. Additionally they never focused on any other aspect of Geocaching, such as making sure to return the cache back to the way they found it when they have found it.
This is the first faux-pas that I have seen on the show, and hope they will post some corrections to their website -- to ensure that future scouts, existing scouts and people looking to learn more about and join the great sport of geocaching!
The reality TV show “Are You Tougher Than a Boy Scout?” shows on the National Geographic Channel on Mondays at 8 p.m. Eastern/7 p.m. Central time.