Update on Camp Tuckahoe’s Closure

Consulting Forester Bob Bingman marking trees at Tuckahoe

It’s just beginning to feel like winter outside, but summer seems so much closer than seven months away when it comes to Camp Tuckahoe.

Since the Executive Board unanimously decided on October 20 to close Tuckahoe indefinitely due to concerns over an unacceptable level of risk from falling trees caused by unseen root damage in the campsites and primary use areas, we’ve been hard at work on steps to resolve the situation.  Our goal remains to have Tuckahoe 100% ready for summer camp and, with any luck, reopen some sections of the camp earlier than that.

Here’s a quick update on our progress:

  • We’ve hired Robert Bingman as our consulting forester to oversee removing the potentially dangerous trees at Tuckahoe. Bob has done work for our Council previously, and we’re glad that Bob was available and willing to take on this critical project.  Bob has been marking the trees to be removed for several weeks now.
  • Once all the trees are marked, Bob will calculate the timber volumes in terms of board feet or cubic feet. This information is essential to prospective harvesters who might be interested in bidding on the work.  Once all the trees are marked, and these calculations are made, Bob will assist the Council in selecting who will perform the work and oversee the process.
  • We’ve removed potentially dangerous trees from the immediate vicinity of the ranger’s home.
  • We’ve removed tent platforms from all campsites in preparation for tree removal work in those areas.

How Can Units and Individuals Help?

We certainly appreciate all the kind offers of assistance we’ve received so far.  One of the specific suggestions is for adults who own chainsaws and want to help clean up after the trees are removed.  Those adults need to complete Chainsaw Basic certification courses, which will allow them to operate a chainsaw at any BSA property.

We’ve scheduled certification courses for December and January.  Information on these courses is available on our website.

What About Summer Camp in 2021?

While seven months seems like a long time, there’s a lot of work to be done.  While extreme winter weather is always a potential concern, we feel there is enough time to remove the trees and clean up in time for a full season at Tuckahoe next summer.

We’ll continue to provide updates as work proceeds at Tuckahoe, including opportunities for Scouts and Scouters to lend a hand in the clean-up. In the meantime, we’re accepting summer camp reservations at Tuckahoe (and Hidden Valley), and we’re looking forward to a great summer at Tuckahoe to get underway come next June.

Yours in Scouting,

Ron Gardner
Scout Executive & CEO

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