Magness Primer

At the time of publishing, this is not an official Pack 559 document. It's just some tips I put together, with the help of a few other parents, to make camp just a little easier to plan for. This document can be changed over time as we learn more about how to help families prepare for camp.

-David Vanderploeg


Lots of campers mistakenly turn in to Cris Dobbins camp, you should be taking a right off CO RD 98, assuming you’re coming from the north. (It is possible to get rerouted and come from the south.) Look for the Magness sign.


Parking is roughly 300 yards from camp. Some families bring collapsible wagons to move everything. The terrain is a little rough, so I preferred carrying a couple duffel bags, especially with backpack straps. Either way works.


You are allowed to bring your own tent, which I recommend if it is an option for you. Your tent will be cleaner, dryer, and have fewer confused campers peaking in too see if it is their tent. If you’re going to use their tents I would advise you to arrive early, sweep out your tent before moving in, and consider putting a little bug spray on before going to sleep. Our one rainy night was the worst for bugs and critters.


Staying hydrated is critical. Every session campers wind up with unexpected down time because they don’t drink enough water. Water is likely going to be the heaviest thing in your (and your scout’s) day pack. Luckily, there are plenty of potable water sources around camp. A small bottle will be fine as long as you take the opportunities to refill. Just 300ml extra of water ads over 1/2 a pound. Giving you scout a 2 or 3 liter hydration pouch really slows them down, and isn’t necessary here.


Camp meals are a mixed bag, some good and some not quite as good. None of them are terrible, but if you have a picky eater you’ll want to take advantage of the alternatives they offer (Cereal, PB&J) or bring a little extra food from home. Scouts (and parents) are going to be burning extra calories, you'll need to make sure you keep energy up. They do offer options for dietary restrictions, I’m sure you need to set that up ahead of time.


You are not allowed to keep food in your tent, they ask that you instead keep it in your car. If you can plan ahead and portion your snacks out into individual bags it will make them easy to grab and go when leaving camp for each activity.


You’ll be hiking a lot, but none of it requires any gear past decent tennis shoes and plenty of water for the average camper. If you brought some trail running gaiters to keep the dirt out of your shoes you probably wouldn’t regret it.


The showers are ok, but another camper told me that they regretted not bringing shower sandals.


While at camp you'll be working on requirements for your next rank. If you prepare ahead of time you can get even more done.


You'll be asked to bring your scouts uniform to camp. A uniform is require to participate in the flag ceremonies, but not to attend them. Hopefully we'll get more guidance from the pack this year about expectations for 559 scouts.

Scout Book

You're also asked to bring your Scout Book to camp. We went ahead and purchased a copy from the scout store before attending. We didn't open it once. If you don't have your book already I wouldn't go out of your way to get one.

Final Day

The last day of camp is very short. Wake up, have breakfast, closing flag ceremony, pack up, check out, go home. Because of this many families leave early. However, if you stay, you'll get a BIG breakfast, a quiet morning, and a little more time away from the city.