Scout Games - Part 1

2 x 4 Balance Race

One boy from each team lines up on the blue line and is given a block of 2 x 4 to set on his head. On the signal, he skates to the other blue line, turns around and returns to his starting position.

Variation--Require the older boys to stoop down without stopping and pick up a puck on their way to the first blue line, and to deposit it from where they picked it up on their return trip.

7 Ways To Get There

Boys in relay formation, the leader asks them to choose 7 ways to get from their starting position to a marker 30' away. Boys confer and decide on such methods as walking, running backwards, doing cartwheels, crabwalk, wheelbarrow, crawling and hopping, so long as each boy chooses some different method of movement, for each boy in the patrol. Leader calls "Go" and the game is on. First to finish wins. As a variation, the leader can issue the 7 methods of movement prior to start of the game.

Air Pilot Test

This is reported to be a test of balance given air pilots in the American Air Force. I can't vouch for that, but I can tell you this always goes over well. A candle is placed on the floor in a candleholder. A foot to the right you place a box of matches (the wooden type). Then, 18" beyond the candle, place a strong glass tumbler or a small flower pot, upside down. The boy participating stands on one foot on the flower pot, leans and picks up the matches, takes a match out of the box, strikes it on the box edge, then leans over and tries to light the candle without losing his balance. Only one lad in a dozen will succeed at this, but all will enjoy trying. Fair warning though, they will probably ask the leader to try, so practice or have an excuse ready.

Alphabetical Script

A zany game for fast-thinking hams. Teams can be of any size. Give each team a situation to act out and a letter of the alphabet to start their dialogue. The first speaker begins the script with the given letter and each successive player must start his bit with the following letter as they try to get as far through the alphabet as possible. Deduct points for "uumms" and other stalls. For example, a script for Mountain Climbing, letter C might go: (1) Can you see the top yet? (2) Don't think so. (3) Easy does it - loose rock here. (4) Fred, look out! (S) Good grief! (6) HELP!! Fun, eh?

Animal Imitation

The boys are in a circle with "it" blindfolded in the centre of the circle. "It" points to one of the boys and says "dog". That boy then imitates a dog (or any animal named by "it"). "It" then tries to guess who the person doing the imitation is.

Arctic serum race

Your Scouts must help save the lives of people trapped in a snowbound, high arctic village. A special serum is their only hope.

Each patrol has a sled or toboggan with a pair of two metre ropes attached. Each sled carries a "bottle of serum" (coloured water in a small jar), and is carried by two pullers and one rider. Other patrol members run alongside.

Set out an obstacle course with four stations spaced about 100 metres apart. At each station patrols change pullers and riders so everyone participates. First patrol to deliver the "serum" to the village (the finish) wins.

Are Ye There?

Boys in a circle with two boys in the centre blindfolded. One of the boys has a rolled paper baton which he uses as a club. This player calls out "are ye there?" from time to time, and the other player must answer "right here". This is a signal for the player with the club to try and strike his opponent. The boys in the circle must not push those in the centre, but just act as a barrier.

Arm Sling Relay

Equipment: One neckerchief for each Scout.

Action: Patrols in relay formation, facing a "patient" from each patrol across room. One junior leader per patrol is judge.

On signal, first Scout runs to patient and applies triangular arm sling. When judge sees sling, he calls "Off!" Scout removes sling, runs back to touch off next man. Continue until each patrol member, except the patient has tied a sling. (If patrol has fewer than eight members, some Scouts run twice, for a total of seven runs.)

Scoring: First patrol finished wins.

Attention Twins

Two equal lines of boys in two opposing lines facing each other about 10 feet apart. The boys are numbered, with number 1 being the smallest, to the biggest, who receives your last number on each team. The leader calls out commands, which the numbered boys obey. First boy to complete the command is given a point for his team. You should have thirty commands written down, for example-

Boys number 1--Go through number 7's legs

Boys number 2--Have number 12 give you a piggyback ride

Boys number 3--Do six push ups.

Australian Stick Game

The first competitor is handed six short batons and lays them out on the ground like the rungs of a ladder at any distance apart to suit himself. He then runs down, stepping between the rungs, and takes a flying leap. Other players follow suit, trying to out- jump him without interfering with the arrangement of the batons. The first man then jumps again to see if he can do better; and so on, until all players have had a go.


Scouts number off. One Scout throws a volleyball-size ball into the air and calls a number. While the other Scouts scatter, the boy with that number tries to catch the ball. If he catches it before it bounces, he throws it up again and calls another number. If he catches it after it has bounced, he calls, 'Freeze!" and he and the rest of the Scouts must stand where they are. (It's probably best not to allow them to hide behind tables or other shelters.) The Scout with the ball tries to hit another Scout by throwing or rolling the ball at him.

Our troop's rules allow the target Scout to bend or sway or move one foot, but not both. You might want to experiment with the amount of motion you allow.

If the thrower misses the target, he is awarded a "B"; if he hits, the target is awarded a "B". The Scout awarded the "B" then throws the ball up and calls a number, and the game continues.

Every time a thrower misses or a target is hit, another letter in the word "Baby" is awarded to that boy. When he is awarded all four letters, he is OUT. The game continues until only one Scout is left. This can take a very long time. (A slightly shorter version of this game is called "Pig".)

That's the way my Scouts described the game to me, and that's the way they like to play it. If I were introducing it to another troop, I'd give it a different name and score it as in Method 2 of Bombardment: a thrower who misses or a target who is hit is required to answer a question or perform a task before rejoining the game.

Balance Relay

Teams by patrol line up facing an overturned 48 oz. juice can. One at a time, boys race to the can and stand on it with one foot. From this position they must bend down to reach a match on the floor, strike the match and light a candle, also on the floor, with it. Then they blow out the candle and return to tag off the next boy in the team. First patrol to finish wins.

Ballon Chinois

Ballon Chinois is much easier to play than to describe. In this version of dodgeball there are no teams or dividing lines. The object is for everyone to try to be the last boy standing.

Best played in a gymnasium, the game begins when a leader throws a ball into the playing area. Anyone is allowed to catch the ball, but he can take no more than three steps in any direction after he does. The three-step rule applies to everyone who has possession of the ball.

A boy with the ball tries to hit any of the other boys who, obviously, scatter. If hit by the ball, a boy must sit down on the floor where he is. The game continues as other players get the ball and try to put out other players.

So far it's quite simple: when you're hit, you sit down. The complications start when we describe how a player who is out can get back into circulation. If a loose ball happens to roll close enough to a "sitting-down" player that he can catch it, he is permitted to grab it, to stand up and, without taking any steps, to throw it at a player still in circulation. If he puts the player out, he is back in the game. If he misses, he takes his place on the floor again.

As you will see when you play the game, even the first person out has a good chance of getting back in and winning. And because players are never really eliminated from the action, they enjoy the game even when they are "out".

The game is over when only one boy remains standing, but you can vary this by setting a time limit. Depending on the skill of the boys, Ballon Chinois with 30 players will last from 15 to 30 minutes.

The first time your group plays Ballon Chinois, there'll be confusion over some of the finer points, but after they get the knack, they'll find it an enjoyable and exciting diversion.

Have fun and "bonne chance"!

Balloon Basketball

Try inside and out. Organize the troop into two teams, each with a "basket" (a Scout standing on a chair) at the end of the court opposite the one in which they start the game. Put a balloon into play. Each team tries to keep possession of the balloon while passing it from player to player. If the balloon touches the ground, the opposite team takes it. Teams score a basket when their Scout on the chair catches the balloon.

Balloon Battle Royal

Everyone has a balloon tied to his ankle and, on a signal, each contestant tries to protect his balloon while trying to stomp on everyone else's.

Balloon Blowing Contest

All players blow up their balloons, with the largest after 60 seconds being the winner. Alternatively, do the above contest but no hands are allowed on the balloon. To finish, try game again but the rules are changed so that the last man to break his balloon by lung power alone is the loser.

Balloon Boxing

Each competitor has two balloons tied about his chest, the object being to break the other fellow's balloons before he breaks yours.

Balloon Busters

Balloon Busters from Scouting (UK) sounds like noisy chaos for celebrating Scouts. You need about 10 balloons per patrol and a whistle. There are two rules: no sharp objects for balloon bursting; no physical contact with other Scouts.

Name a patrol "the busters" for round one. A leader tosses 10 balloons into the air in quick succession. The named patrol tries to burst all the balloons within a two minute maximum playing time. The Scouts from all the other patrols try to prevent the balloons from being burst. A whistle ends the round.

For round two, a different patrol are the busters. Play until all patrols have had a turn.

Balloon Catch

Players are seated in a circle on the ground (or floor). They are numbered off. Highest numbered player is "it." He has an inflated balloon and stands in the centre of the circle. Suddenly he calls a number (of one of the other players) and drops the balloon. The holder of the number called must try to catch the balloon before it touches the ground. If he succeeds, "it" tries another number. If he fails, he becomes "it". Equipment: A balloon - plus a few spares!!

Balloon Football

Divide the boys into two teams. Set them on the floor facing each other with their feet touching. The leader drops a balloon between the two teams. Players hit the balloon with one hand, trying to hit it past the other team so that they cannot return the balloon. If the balloon goes behind the other team so that the players from the other team cannot reach it, then a goal has been scored for the opposing team. The feet must be touching the feet of the opposing players at all times.

Balloon Grab

A large balloon is tied to a 3 foot string and is thrown between two teams. One team tries to keep it up, the other to haul it down and break it.

Balloon Put

Use a balloon for the shot put event at a field day. Who can put their balloon the furthest? You might try water balloons, using a bit of water in them to give some weight, but Scouts will need to find a way to toss them so that they don't burs when they hit the ground.

Balloon Race

Give each six or patrol a different coloured balloon of irregular shape and each boy a large drinking straw. Line up teams at one end of the hall. Working together, each team tries to blow their balloon to the opposite end of the hall in the fastest possible time. Straws must not touch balloons.

Balloon Race

Contestants will be in the water on one side of the pool, just hanging onto the pool side. Each boy will be handed a balloon, and on a signal, will blow it to the other side of the pool. No hands will be used. First balloon to touch other side is winner.

Balloon Races

One boy from each team lines up on the blue line and is handed a balloon. On the signal, he pushes it down the ice to the other blue line, then picks it up and skates as fast as possible back to the starting position.

Variation--The older boys can try this with the balloons held between their legs at the knees.

Balloon Stomp

Same as above except the balloons are tied to the contestants' ankles with a 16" length of string.


Another good one for Scouts. Boys in two teams. Members of one team hold water-filled balloons on their heads while the others, equipped with razors and cans of shaving soap, try to lather up and shave the balloons without getting their customers wet.

Be Prepared

The Scout motto is Be Prepared By no later than...., find newspaper articles, magazine stories, book titles, chapter headings, pamphlets, or anything else that uses the words "Be Prepared". Make sure you keep the explanations of why the readers should be prepared.

An alternative to this game might be to collect news stories that demonstrate lack of preparation. You can play a similar game asking Scouts to find newspaper or magazine stories that show the Scout promise or law in action (not just stories about Scouts, but any that show the spirit of the Scout promise and law). Or you could ask them to find articles and other evidence about people, not necessarily Scouts, doing good turns. Another idea is to ask the Scouts to collect ideas for community good turns and then do them.

Billabong Race

A billabong is a riverside lake and, because water is very scarce in Australia, conservation is most important. Set up a course about 20 m long. Place the billabong (a child's wading pool or a large plastic pail) and the teams, each with an identically sized "billy" (soup can), at one end. At the other end, place a 2 L milk carton with top removed or a well rinsed bleach bottle for each team. On signal, players begin, one by one, to fill the team billy from the billabong, race to their larger container, empty the billy into it, and race back to pass the billy to the next team member. The winner is the team who fill their container fastest with the least amount of spillage.

Bird's Alive!

You need at least two or three patrols seated in a circle around a campfire. Clockwise from one to the other, players pass around a well-lighted stick of wood from the fire. As each passes on the firestick, the player says, "Bird's Alive!".

The player in whose hand the fire goes out must pay a forfeit: sing a song, tell a joke, answer a quiz question, or whatever the campfire leader decides. Players may blow on the stick to keep the flame alive.

Play this one with caution to ensure no one gets too close to the hot end of the stick!

Well, that should keep you going until next month, when we'll offer a few more games from around the world for your Scouts to play.

Birds of a Feather

Patrols in their corners. Number off.

Each player is given a slip of paper with the name of an animal or a bird on it.

At a given signal, all creatures advance, making their call, seeking their kind from other patrols.

Winners are the first group to find each other.

Blind Kim's Game

In plastic bags, place items like a small tin spaghetti, peeled orange, peeled grapes, eggs, etc. Blindfold patrols and have them identify the items by touch. Patrol with most accurate list wins.

Blind Spider

To an overhead beam or branch, secure the standing part of half a dozen 12 ft. lines. One Scout holds the free end of each line. One is appointed "Spider" and while blindfolded must try to tag the others without anyone leaving go of the line.

Blow Football

Place a ping pong ball in the centre of a table. Station two boys at each end of the table with large soda straws in their mouths. On the signal, the boys blow through their straws and try to move the ball toward a goal on their opponents side. (Goal can be two coins set 5" apart.) If the ball is blown off the table, it is set back in the centre of the table by a referee. As this game requires lots of "wind" you can have six a side, the next two stepping up when the first two tire out. A cardboard edging on the table will improve the game.

Boat Race (Scouts)

Organize teams in relay formation opposite a finish line. On signal, the first two players of each team face each other, sit down on each other's feet, and establish a firm grip on their partner's upper arms. Then, with a rocking motion, they "row" to the finish line. As soon as they are over the line, they spring up and race back to tag off the next pair. It's easier said than done and a lot of fun to watch.


Line up Scouts in teams of equal numbers at opposite ends of the hall. Provide each Scout a target which he is to defend personally. Plastic bowling pins, 48 ounce juice tins or pieces of 2 x 4 about 30 cm long make suitable targets.

Place several volleyball-size balls in the centre of the hall; a quarter to a half as many balls as there are Scouts. At the word "Go", Scouts run to touch the wall behind them, then race to try to pick up one of the balls in the centre. Those who are successful throw or roll the balls in an attempt to knock down the other team's targets.

After the first volley, balls will be scattered around the hall and Scouts can pick up and throw any ball at will, but they must not cross the centre into the other team's territory. (Some Scouts will cautiously stay close to their own target, while others will roam the hall in order to get more balls to throw. What does this tell you about the nature of each boy?)

Bombardment can be scored in either of two ways:

1. When a Scout's target is knocked over, he is OUT. The team that first knocks over all the other team's targets is the winner.

2. The game is played for a fixed period of time, say five or 10 minutes. When a Scout's target is knocked over, the opposing team scores a point and the Scout must go to a leader and perform a task such as tying a knot or answering a Scoutcraft question. Then he sets up his target again and is back in the game. When time is up, the team with the most points is the winner.

It's helpful to have at least two leaders supervising Bombardment; one to keep track of downed targets and award points; and one or two to assign tasks to the Scouts whose targets have been downed.

Bonzer Balloon Race

If it's "bonzer", it's good. Set up a 100 m course about 6 m wide with 1 m high lengths of string stretched across at the 25, 50, and 75 m marks. Give each participant an inflated balloon and line up everyone at the start line. Players tap the balloons along the course, keeping them in the air at all times. At each cross-string, they bat their balloons high and quickly crawl under the string before the balloons hit the ground. If a balloon touches down, the player returns to the start line. If it bursts, he's out.

Booby Trap Relay

You need an empty barrel. Place paper and pencil on the bottom. Across the top of the barrel lay a pole onto which you've tied a string dangling a nail or spike. The challenge for patrols is to have each member crawl head first into the barrel to sign his name on the paper without blowing himself up by causing the dangling spike to swing against the side of the barrel. Task accomplished, the boy must retreat from the barrel and tag off the next Scout in his patrol. Patrol to complete the challenge with the highest number of survivors wins.

Border Crossing

Rig a line across the width of the troop room at the height of about 4 ft. above the deck, with a rope quoit threaded onto it. To each side of the quoit attach a short knotting rope. Two Scouts hold the free end of the ropes, one at each side of the Border. They are armed with batons of rolled newspaper. Other Scouts dodge to and fro. Crossing over the Border in one direction, and under the Border in the other. The Border Guards attempt to clout them with their batons.

Bowling for spuds

Set up bowling pins, using colourful balloons taped to paper cups. Mark off bowling lanes with tape or chalk, then use the potatoes as bowling balls. Any "balls" rolling outside the lane are disqualified.


Players in circle. They count in turn, but whenever the number 7 comes, or a multiple of 7, or a figure with 7 in it (e.g., 14, 21, 27, 28, etc.), the player whose turn it is must say "Buzz". After two mistakes player drops out. Seventy-one would be "buzz one"; seventy-seven is "buzz-buzz" etc. After each mistake the count starts again at one.

Canadian Symbols

The Canadian Society of Expatriates and Habitants (CanadiansEH?) are gathering Canadian artifacts for their museum in Antarctica They have asked us to collect items that illustrate our use of the following symbols of Canada. Deliver these items no later than....: maple leaf; Canadian Centennial Maple Leaf beaver; Canadian Coat of Arms, Canadian flag; the words 'Canada' or "Canadian" or "Canuck"; letter of the alphabet incorporating a maple leaf pre-1965 canadian flag; lyrics of the second verse of O Canada; member of the RCMP; Canadian parliament building book written by a Canadian author; song written by a Canadian (you have to sing it); Canadian invention, with inventor's name; name of any member of the Order of Canada; Hudson's Bay Company provincial coat of arms; provincial flag, province name or name given to someone who lives in the province; provincial flower; provincial logo; municipal coat of arms; municipal flag; municipal logo; city hall or civic centre.

Collect one item from each category. Use clippings from newspapers, magazines, corporate literature, pamphlets, brochures or catalogues; rubbings, photographs; or anything else that shows the symbol being used. Your patrol earns bonus points for any items another patrol does not duplicate. Be prepared to explain why we use these symbols. What are they symbols of? Do we need them? Suggest some other symbols we could use. (Scouter's Note: relate to the Citizen Achievement Badge)

Candle Race

Contestants will be in the water as above, along the pool side. They will be handed a lighted candle. On a signal they are to swim over to the other side of the pool using any front or side stroke, and to return to their starting point swimming on their back. If the candle goes out, the boy is disqualified.

Candlelight relay

Cubs and Scouts will love this game. Each team consists of two people.

The first person jumps into the water carrying two matches and swims (or wades) to where the other team member waits with a matchbox and candle. The swimmer (hopefully with dry matches) lights the candle, hands it to his partner, who then swims back to the start with the lighted candle.

If neither match lights the candle, the first swimmer must go back to the start for two more matches. If the candle goes out, the second swimmer must go back to the first swimmer, who relights the candle (if he has a dry match!), then continues.

The first team across the finish line with a lighted candle wins.

Capture the Flag (with a winter twist)

Allow each patrol or company one hour to build a snowfort. Mount a pennant on each fort. At the end of the hour, each team will attack the opposing fort or forts and endeavour to capture the flag. At the same time, they must protect their own fort and flag. If there are more than two teams involved, the first team to lose its flag must join the team which has captured its flag and assist in the attack on the other forts.

Careless Camp Observation Game

Set up a tent and simple fireplace and scatter mistakes on site: a carelessly dropped ax; a glass jar next to the fireplace; poorly set tent pegs and badly tied guylines; etc. Include, as well, some personal items like sleeping bags, patrol scarfs, shirts with identification on them, name tags, etc.

Give patrols five minutes to study the site. They are not to talk, but they can touch what they see as long as they leave an item exactly as they found it. Patrols then huddle to prepare a list of all the things they found wrong in the camp. Best list wins. As patrols hand in their lists, add to the contest by giving each a card of questions asking, for example, How many boys were camping? What troops or patrols do they belong to? etc.

Chain Gang

Not so much a game as a test of discipline and the Scouter's nerve. Troop in circle, Scouter in centre. At signal, all walk around dejectedly, looking like pillars of the establishment serving a long sentence for some unspeakable crime. Suddenly, the Scouter raises his arm - the signal tor each prisoner to jump on the back of the man in front.

When order has been restored, hand out short lengths of light line and invite the prisoners to walk around as before and, at a given signal, put a bowline around the waist of the man in front.


The over-30 crowd like to remind the under-30 crowd that things are not what they used to be. Everything has changed. It's true. There are changes all around us. By no later than...., bring back one each of something that is changing: its size or shape; its weight; its colour; its texture; in number, every day; so slowly you can't tell, into something else; by natural causes; because of human activity. Chaos

Place a blanket in the centre of the room and arrange the troop into two teams, one stationed on one side of the room, the second opposite them on the other side. Secretly give one team directions to sit on the blanket. Tell the other team to pick up the blanket and wave it in the air. Stand well back and cover your ears!

Chariot Fight

Teams divide into parties of three; two link arms and the other holds their belts. The latter has a scarf in his belt as a tail. The "horses" then try to snatch the tails of the "drivers" of the other teams. Any "chariot" losing its tail falls out. Team whose chariots capture the most tails wins.

Narrator: One Scout in front, one stooping behind holding the Leader's waist and a rider sitting astride. Each rider tries to unseat the other riders.

Chip taste test

Number five bowls of potato chips and record which flavour is in each bowl. Keep this information secret. Tape the five potato chip bags to the wall behind the table. The fun begins when people start to match the taste with the bag. Yum!

Compass Advance

Equipment: Prepared list of questions related to compass and its use.

Method: Patrols in relay formation. Games leader calls out a question, such as: "I'm facing azimuth 220. What is the azimuth at my right hand?" Or, "How many degrees variation in our locality?", etc. Lead-off man in each Patrol yells out answer. Patrol whose lead-off player gives first correct answer advances two steps, and lead player falls to end of Patrol line. All other players stand fast. New question is "popped", and first correct answer earns two steps toward goal line for that Patrol, and so on. Game points out Scouts in need of compass training and gives them many tries at several different questions.

Scoring: Patrol first to advance to opposite end of room, or given point, wins.

Variation: Use Compass Advance in teaching other Scout skills.

Compass Readings

Equipment: For each Patrol compass, pencil and list of 8 features of room (such as Troop flag, knot board, etc.), or of 8 landmarks, if outdoors (large tree, rock, etc.). Chalk for drawing circles or stick for scratching them.

Method: Relay formation. Opposite to each Patrol, at other end of room, is circle, just big enough for boy to stand in. Here lies compass, pencil, list of objects. First player runs up, stands in circle, takes reading to first object, writes it down. Runs back, touches off next, and so on, until all readings are made.

Scoring: (a) 10 points for readings within 10 degrees, 5 points for readings with error from 10 to 20 degrees: OR (b) Have a junior leader at each circle, keeping each boy until he has made a reading within 10 degrees of actual direction.

Corner Ball

This game requires one volleyball.

Mark the floor into 4 two and a half metre squares. Patrols line up as shown with their player at the front on the line. The server in square 1 hits the ball, volleyball fashion, so it bounces into square 3. The player in this square must hit it on its first bounce to either square 2 or square 4.

The game continues with each player hitting the ball so that it bounces into either of the two squares from which the ball did not come. Players cannot return the ball to the square it came from.

After each player hits the ball, she goes to the end of the line and the next person becomes the player.

Scoring: Every time a team misses the ball, sends it into the wrong square, or lands it on a line, the team gets one point. The team with the fewest points wins.

Country Outlines

A good observation game--trace the outline of several well-known countries, and one or two less obvious ones, onto plain sheets of paper. Go over tracing with a black felt pen. Or silhouettes could be cut from black paper and mounted on a white card. Boys must try to identify country by outline alone.

Courier du Bois Race

The courier du bois were hardy men who sometimes carried packs ranging up to three or four hundred pounds. Their day was long -- 12 to 14 hours -- and their food minimal.

To stage this event, the following items are required:

a) A supply of sand or similar weighty material;

b) A scale and scoop or shovel;

c) A number of large paper bags to put the sand in;

d) A method of checking or determining each participant's weight;

e) A pack for each participant;

f) A pair of snowshoes for each participant;

g) A small jam-can bucket for each participant;

h) One tea bag and three lumps of sugar for each participant;

i) A well-marked route over a course one mile in length. Ensure that the mile point is well marked;

j) Score cards for each participant.

Participants are weighed at the beginning of the course. The weight of the pack each will carry shall be no more than 20% or 1/5 of their body weight.

Sufficient sand is placed in a paper bag to equal one half of intended pack weight. The boy's weight, starting pack load and the judge's signature are entered on the score card.

Participants are then provided with the jam-can bucket, one tea bag and the sugar. These items are placed in their pack.

The start of the race can be done on an individual basis, with each participant starting down the trail as soon as he is ready. If this method is used, be sure to mark the starting time on the individual's score card.

Upon arrival at the one-mile marker, participants will build a small fire and prepare a cup of tea.

After preparing and consuming his hot beverage, the participant will report to the judge. The judge will mark the time on the score card carried by the individual.

The judge will then note the pack weight and add sufficient sand to bring the pack weight up to the full 20% of the individual's body weight.

The participant will report to the starter judge and begin the journey back to the starting point. Upon arrival, the time is noted on his card and the card is given to the score keeper.

The team or individual with the best time wins.

A number of people are required as officials. The actual number will vary according to the number of boys participating. Better too many officials than too few with the resultant slow-up of the event. Tasks to be performed which will require people:

Crazy Beetles (A Knotty Game)

Give each patrol or six a Crazy Beetle kit: giant cardboard beetle head and body with holes for legs and tail; seven 80 cm ropes, hanked (legs and tail); two antennae made from 25 cm lengths of wire in which you've bent a small loop; two eyes; one long rope; sticky tape. Give each team a pair of dice as well.

On signal, each boy in turn throws the dice. To get the beetle body and start the assembly process, someone must roll a 6. When they have the body, they must roll a 5 to get the head, which they attach to body with a sheet bend. They continue to roll for other parts of the bug, but the assembly order no longer matters. Four gets a leg, which they attach with a round turn and two half hitches; 3 gets the tail, attached with a reef knot; 2 gets an antenna, attached with tape; 1 gets an eye, also attached with tape.

When the critter is complete, the team ties the long rope around its neck with a bowline and tows it across the room to Scouter, who checks to see that it is properly knotted. First successful team wins. Other knots may also be used.

Cross Country Soccer

I also came across the following outdoor game which I thought would be useful for a troop's games repertoire. The unique feature of the game is that it is designed for uneven ground similar to that which is found at camp. The more broken the ground and the more obstructions in the way, such as trees and bushes, the more exciting the game becomes.

The playing field has no definite boundaries but should not be more than one hundred yards long. The bigger the field, the larger the teams need to be.


1 soccer ball, 2 tent pegs and 10' ropes

The goal keepers are tied from the waist to the tent pegs driven into the ground at either end of the field. The rope should leave about six feet of movement all around. The goal keepers are stationed at the opposite ends of the field to that normally expected, ie. each goal keeper is in front of his team, not behind.

The object is for the team to get the ball to their goal keeper at the opposite end of the field; this constitutes a goal. When the ball goes behind the goal line, the goal kick is taken by one or the other team members, otherwise it would be too easy for the goal keeper to kick to one of his own team members who would then easily score. Any method of propelling the ball is allowed except that the ball may be carried only a maximum two paces. It can be kicked, thrown, thumped or headed. Any form of tackling is allowed but the referee should retain the right to send the players off for periods of one minute if unfair tackling is practised. No player is allowed in a position where the goal keeper can touch him, whichever side he is on. This prevents a defensive screen or obstructive one around the goal keepers. A free kick is given for this infringement from any position decided by the referee. The game is started and restarted after goals, by the ball being thumped into the air. In the case where there are a number of trees and shrubs and there is a danger of them being damaged because of the melee of Scouts scrambling to get the ball, the referee may blow the whistle and start the game again in order to protect the natural vegetation.

Crossing the River Styx

The knights have to cross a lake of water instead of fire. Two ropes are strung across a fifty yard stretch of lake and two knights from each kingdom then pull rafts across. The first kingdom to have six dry knights (those who don't fall in) across is the victor.

Cup of Water Race

One boy from each team lines up on the blue line and is handed a full cup of water. On the signal, he skates to the other blue line, where he stops and skates backwards to his starting position. The fun begins when the boys start backwards...


Not for softies. Suspend a balloon from a tree just above head height. Organize the troop into two teams. One team defends the balloon; the other tries to burst it. There are no other rules.

Diamond Smugglers

Equipment needed: Bag of marbles Guns for border police

Boys divide into two teams: smugglers and border police. One of the smugglers carries bag of diamonds (marbles) concealed about his person. Border police each carry a gun (could be wooden or cardboard replica) and chase or creep up on smugglers who are trying to get diamonds to pre-arranged spot. If policeman manages to catch a smuggler, by touching his back or chest with gun, the latter must hand over the diamonds if he has them. If not, smuggler goes free and policeman gives up his gun. Diamonds can change hands from one smuggler to another and unarmed police can still give chase but can't make actual capture themselves.

Discovery Scavenger Hunt

Give each patrol a list and half an hour to see how many items they can locate within the boundaries of your play area. Remind Scouts of the importance of making minimum impact. They write notes on the items they observe in each category but do not collect specimens.

When the hunt is over, patrols gather and compare findings. If their report includes particularly interesting observations, take the whole troop for a walk to see them.

Patrol Instructions

As a patrol, find as many of these natural items as you can within the designated area.

1. Two things with chlorophyll in them 2. Coniferous trees 3. Things that fly 4. Parasites 5. A natural object that is red 6. Plants with berries 7. Something you might use if you were fishing 8. Something that swims 9. Evidence of death 10. Insects 11. A natural object that is blue 12. Things that are part of the food chain 13. Evidence of disease 14. Mammals 15. An example of the interdependence of natural things

Do Or Die

This is a fighting game that boys love and call for repeatedly. Divide the players into two groups and bunch them about fifteen feet apart. Give the captain of each team a folded slip with instructions written on it. At the signal the captain opens his slip and reads it to his team, and they immediately attempt to carry out the orders. For example, one slip might read "Leave the room" and the other team's slip, "Don't let anybody leave the room."

Dog Race

For the younger boys only. A simple dog paddle race. Boys will be at the pool side, on the deck. On the signal, they jump in, do the dog paddle over and back, and over and back again. First boy to finish, climb onto the pool deck and bark three times, is the winner.

Dribble Ball (American Indian)

Form up in relay formation at one end of the hall. Place a chair or stake at the other end, opposite each patrol. Give each patrol a similar size ball.

On the word "Go", the first player of each patrol kicks off the ball, dribbling it with his feet only and taking it round the chair or stake and back to the starting point, where the next man in line takes over.

The boys should be told the name of the race and have it explained carefully so that no one will start taking mighty kicks at the ball, confusing the other players and himself. First patrol to finish wins.

Driving the spuds to market

Each person must sweep five potatoes from one end of the room to the other using only a household broom. Mark racing lanes on the floor to make this more challenging.

Elephant Line

See how Cubs or Scouts do with this one. Boys get down on hands and knees side by side and close together in a long line, alternate boys facing in opposite directions. Very gently, they begin to sway back and forth. The boy at one end of the line gets up and tries to crawl along the backs of the line of elephants. If he falls off, he has one more go before joining the elephant line. If he makes it to the end, he joins the line and the next boy starts.

Elephant Walk

A good game requiring co-ordination. Player number one bends over with his arms dangling and legs wide open. Player number two lies on his back with his legs between number one's legs. On signal, player one grabs the ankles of player two, and player two lifts himself up on his arms. They proceed in this arrangement to a goal line, lumbering like an elephant. This is repeated until all have run, as in a relay.

End Ball

End Ball comes from Mike Pinch of the 96th Ottawa Scouts. You play it with two teams of eight to 12 players each. Draw a boundary line across the centre of the hall. At a distance about one-eighth the length of the hall from the end walls, draw across boundaries to mark off the end zones. If your hall is like ours andhas chairs and tables stacked up along the walls, draw off- side lines away from the walls as well, to make sure the playing area is clear of obstructions.

Organize each team into Floor Men and End Men - about half as many End Men as Floor Men (e.g. with 12 players, eight Floor Men and four End Men; with eight players, five on the floor and three in the ends). The Floor Men of each team position themselves in one of the larger playing areas while their End Men stand in the end zones at the opposite end of the hall from their team. Floor Men and End Men may move freely within their own areas, but must not cross boundary lines. The Floor Men try to score points by throwing a volley-ball to one of their End Men.

The game starts with a toss-up between two selected Floor Men. The player who retrieves the ball may throw, bounce or roll it to any other Floor Man on his team. At any time after the ball is in play, a Floor Man may try to score a point by throwing it to one of his team's End Men, who must catch it "on the fly". The Floor Men of the other team try to block the throw and retrieve the ball for themselves.

When a team scores a point, the ball returns to the referee who puts it into play by tossing it to a Floor Man of the other team. This gives the non-scoring team a slight advantage and helps keep the game more even.

A Floor Man in possession of the ball may not move his feet and may not keep the ball longer than five seconds before passing it or trying to score. No player may cross a boundary or an off-side line. As a penalty for any infraction, the ball is turned over to a Floor Man of the other team.

To score a point, the Floor must throw (not bounce or roll) the ball, and the End must catch it. If he drops it, the ball is turned over to the other team. The first team to score 10 points is the winner.

With teams smaller than eight, you can play a variation called Corner Ball. Instead of End Men, each team has two Corner Men who stand in the corners at the opposite end of the hall from their Floor Men. Draw boundaries a suitable distance from the corners. You'll have to experiment a bit; the size of your corner zone will depend on the size of the hall and the number of players on each team.

The rules for Corner Ball are the same as those for End Ball.

Although we haven't yet tried this variation, End Ball would probably be a lot of fun with two or three balls in play at the same time.

Endurance race

A good game except that it calls for the elimination of the slowest runner after each run. Occasionally play the game without eliminating anyone. Here is the normal manner of play. All the boys line up at one end of a field or hall. The leader gives a command to "run" to the other side of the field or hall. The last boy to arrive is eliminated from the game. The leader gives a second command, perhaps "walk sideways", and the boys proceed to do so. Again the last man to arrive at the original starting position is eliminated. The game continues until only one boy remains. Keep the game lively with plenty of variety in movement methods. For example crawling, barrow pushing, crab-walk, handstands, cartwheels, slow motion, baby steps, etc., can be used for commands. As its name implies, this game is a real endurance test, especially if no boy is eliminated until he's tired enough to want no more.