National Outdoor Awards – Adventure Segment Requirements

National Outdoor Awards Adventure for Scouts BSA Boy Scouts Venturers

To complete the requirements for the National Outdoor Award Adventure Segment, a Scout or Venturer must learn to be prepared during outdoor adventures. He or she must also complete a challenging backpacking, paddling, sailing, climbing, or other high-adventure activity.

The National Outdoor Awards recognize young men and women in Scouts BSA and Venturing who go beyond in their quest to enjoy the outdoors. There is a center emblem which is presented with the first award and then a segment for each discipline which is completed. The segments are displayed around the center emblem. Additional devices can be worn if the the Scout or Venturer completes even more adventures.

See the specifics below, along with some related helps and awards at the bottom of this post.

National Outdoor Award Adventure Segment Requirements

A Scout, Sea Scout, or Venturer may earn the National Outdoor Badge for Adventure upon successfully completing the following requirements:

  1. Earn the First Class rank, Sea Scout Apprentice rank, or complete Venturing Ranger Award requirements 1-6.
  2. Complete the requirements for one of the following: Wilderness Survival, Search and Rescue, or Emergency Preparedness merit badges or Ranger Wilderness Survival core, Ranger Emergency Preparedness core, or Ranger First Aid elective.
  3. Complete 10 of any combination or repetition of the following adventure activities under the auspices of the Boy Scouts of America:
    1. A backpacking trip lasting three or more days and covering more than 20 miles without food resupply
    2. A canoeing, rowing, or sailing trip lasting three or more days and covering more than 50 miles without food resupply
    3. A whitewater trip lasting two or more days and covering more than 20 miles without food resupply
    4. A climbing activity on open rock, following Climb On Safely principles, that includes camping overnight
    5. Earn the National Historic Trails Award.
    6. Earn the 50-Miler Award.
    7. Attend any national high-adventure base or any nationally recognized local high-adventure or specialty-adventure program.

Items 3a–g may be repeated as desired. A single activity that satisfies multiple items in 3a–g may be counted as separate activities at the discretion of the unit leader. Similarly, a single activity that doubles an item in 3a–d may be counted as two activities at the discretion of the unit leader. A gold device may be earned for each additional five activities. A silver device is earned for each additional 20 activities. The Scout may wear any combination of devices totaling his current number of activities.

COPE (Challenging Outdoor Personal Experience) Program Feature for Scouts BSA

The COPE feature teaches Scouts to go beyond their comfort zones They develop self esteem by facing challenges individually and as a member of a team.

Historic Trails Program

This award recognizes young men and women in Scouts BSA and Venturing who have planned and executed a historic outdoor activity in cooperation with a local society.

Backpacking Ranger Elective Helps and Documents

To complete the Backpacking elective for the Venturing Ranger award, Venturers must learn the skills needed for backpacking and take part in several treks. Then they must share their knowledge with others.

Wilderness Survival Ranger Core Requirement Helps and Documents

To complete the Wilderness Survival core requirement for the Venturing Ranger award, Venturers must learn and practice outdoor skills.

Wilderness Survival Troop Program Feature for Scouts BSA

The Wilderness Survival program feature helps Scouts learn how to stay safe, warm, and dry when the unexpected happens during an outdoor adventure.

Mountaineering Ranger Elective Helps and Documents

To earn the Mountaineering elective for the Venturing Ranger award, Venturers must learn about climbing and bouldering, practice climbing and rappelling skills, and teach others about what they have learned.

Emergency Preparedness Troop Program Feature for Scouts BSA

The Emergency Preparedness feature teaches Scouts how to develop the first aid and leadership skills needed to deal with an emergency. Scouts learn to be prepared for accidents and natural disasters and to make informed decisions.

Watercraft Ranger Elective Helps and Documents

To earn the Watercraft elective for the Venturing Ranger award, Venturers must learn to safely operate a paddle craft, board sail, or sailboat.

Emergency Preparedness Ranger Core Requirement Helps and Documents

By completing this requirement, a Venturer is not only prepared to deal with emergencies which he or she encounters, but has also passed this knowledge on to other

Backpacking Troop Program Feature

This backpacking program feature offers the opportunity to learn more about hiking and low impact camping. A Scouts BSA Troop PLC can plan a whole month of activities incorporating a backpacking theme.

Paddle Sports Troop Program Feature for Scouts BSA

The Paddle Sports program feature helps Scouts learn how to safely enjoy non-motorized trips on the water. Scouts learn about canoeing, kayaking, or stand up paddleboarding.

50 Miler Award

The 50 Miler award recognizes young men and women in Scouts BSA and Venturing who hike, paddle, or ride a total of 50 miles over at least 5 consecutive days. The trek must be completed without using motors. Riding can be cycling or horseback riding. To earn the award, members of your unit must plan and participate in a service project.


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