Onteora Camping 1968-1972

Onteora Scout Reservation was operating at or near full capacity in the 1960's and early 1970's.  There were four, two-week camping periods each summer. The middle Saturday of each period was Visitor's Day. Besides letters from home, Visitor's Day was the only reminder of the outside world for two weeks. Actually Visitor's Day could cause the younger scouts to become homesick, and my troop discouraged parents from visiting for that reason.

I camped at Onteora as a Scout for two weeks each summer from 1968 to 1972. In 1969, besides regular troop camp I also went to two weeks of JLTC, meaning I spent a month at Onteora during  the heavy August rains that had Sullivan County declared a disaster area! (If you've seen the movie "Woodstock" you know what rain I'm talking about.) In the summers of 1973 and 1974 I worked on camp staff but for some unknown reason I can find no pictures from those years. This is surprising since I've always been a real shutterbug. Maybe they are hidden somewhere in a box in the attic.
OSR Parade Grounds 1969 Buckskin Waterfront 1969
The Parade Grounds in 1969 with the Buckskin Waterfront in the middle of the picture. The Buckskin Waterfront in 1969.
Big Indian Buckskin Ampitheatre Buckskin waterfront buddy board 1969
The Big Indian guarding the entrance to the Buckskin amphitheater was gone in 1998, as was the amphitheater itself, but he was an impressive sight in 1969. Notice the scout standing by the Indian's left leg.

Click on the Big Indian picture to see what the Buckskin amphitheater looked like to someone standing on the stage, then use your browser's Back button to get back to this page.

Here is the buddy board at the Buckskin Waterfront in 1969. Our site, Daniel Boone, is the fifth from the left on the bottom row. If you look closely you can see that when the picture was taken all but two of our scouts were blue tags (advanced swimmers). Troop 82 was very proud of this. Usually by the end of camp, our entire troop was blue tag. My first year at camp I started as a white tag (non-swimmer). After the first week I had progressed to red tag (intermediate) and after two weeks of swimming every day I made blue tag. Must be something about that cold lake water that motivates one to learn to swim!

If you're REALLY interested in taking a closer look at the buddy board, click the image to see the full size original. I warn you, its about 243K, but its surprisingly clear and you can read all the camp site names and clearly see the colors of each tag, but you can't quite read the names on the tags. (Come on, it's only 35mm, not spy image technology!) Once again, use your browser's Back button to get back here.

Stay tuned... more to come!  

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