Scout camp still stuck in winter

Published: Monday, June 30 2008 12:01 a.m. MDT

Heavy snow shoveling in late June? A snow closure into early July? Both happened this summer at a popular Boy Scout camp operated by the Trapper Trails Council of Ogden in northwestern Wyoming.

With up to 4 feet of snowdrifts still on the ground around Camp Loll, the camp's opening planned for today has been postponed until July 7.

"The last time this happened was 25 years ago," said Rick Barnes, Scout executive for Trapper Trails.

Camp Steiner, a High Uintas Camp in the Great Salt Lake Scout Council, will still open for the season today as planned, despite unusually wet and muddy conditions there.

Barnes said 24 Scout troops — mostly from Utah — had signed up to be at Camp Loll's opening week, today-July 5. All but one troop has rescheduled for later dates or other camps.

"We've got staff at Camp Loll right now," Barnes said, indicating one of their main jobs is shoveling snow.

Located at an elevation of 7,400 feet, Camp Loll last faced a delay from snow in 1983, because of another heavy winter and late spring. Historically, it has snowed some years in August at Camp Loll.

"Once in a while, Mother Nature makes it a little difficult for us," Barnes said. "I guess once every 25 years isn't bad."

Located just two miles south of the Yellowstone National Park border and four miles north of Grand Teton National Park, Camp Loll is one of the nation's most isolated and pristine Scout camps. It opened in about 1960.

"Camp Loll is pretty popular," Barnes said. It's the only one of the council's seven camps that is normally full during the Fourth of July holiday week.

Barnes said he visited Camp Loll last February via snowmobile and measured 12 feet of snow there then.

"Usually we have a better snowmelt."

Kay Godfrey, spokesman for the Great Salt Lake Council, said Camp Steiner is opening at its regular time.

"They'll open up just fine," he said. "A little wetter than usual."

He said the camp still has 2 feet of snow under some trees, but the council punched the road through to the camp a few weeks early this year to ensure it dried out.

At an elevation of 10,400 feet, Camp Steiner is the nation's highest Scout camp. It is located just northeast of Mirror Lake, near Scout Lake, off state Route 150.


E-mail: lynn@desnews.com

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