|They NAYLE-d It!|
|Written by Chris|
Four of the Crew traveled to Philmont for the National Advanced Youth Leadership Experience, also known simply as NAYLE. The weeklong course is conducted at the Rocky Mountain Scout Camp, one of the backcountry stops on the ranch. NAYLE is based in high adventure, team building, servant leadership, and the development of ethical decision making. The program isn’t a lock-step curriculum like other BSA courses. It usually delivers a number of subjective outcomes focusing on each individual's perspective, opinion, and feelings, including growing self-awareness, growing self-confidence, growing creativity, the happiness from helping others succeed. It teaches an understanding that everyone is a leader, everyone in the group contributes in a significant way to team success, knowing leadership is a way of life.
Sam G, Malachi, Nick W, and Chris Z all served in separate NAYLE Crews, along with others from all across the USA. In order to attend NAYLE, they first completed our Crew's Introduction to Leadership Skills Course (ILSC), and all four graduated from the Chief Seattle Council's National Youth Leadership Training course (NYLT). Two of them had even staffed NYLT. At Philmont, their "experience" included a COPE course, Wilderness First Aid training, GPS navigation and geocaching, search and rescue, Leave No Trace/LNT and conservation. These are the same training requirements for a Philmont Ranger. They also completed the requirements for the new Search and Rescue Merit Badge.
Yes, the word TRAINING makes it sound like a classroom, but it really wasn't. Learning didn’t happen in a room, but in the rugged outdoors of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains (Spanish for "Blood of Christ"). In fact, there are no buildings at all, and the only way to even see any buildings was to wake up at 4:30AM and climb to 9,003 feet atop the Tooth of Time. From that incredible view, you can see the Sante Fe Trail and Philmont's Camping HQ. Conventional visiting Crews at Philmont have to reach the Tooth via the gradual Trail of Tears along the ridgeline, but the NAYLE folks attack it from the aggressive Stockade Trail, 2400 feet, straight up.
It was a blast, and our guys drew some pretty strong, positive comments from the NAYLE leadership cadre.