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Main | On the Water | Required Skills | Wet Gear | Webinar (5/30)

Printable form or purchase online: adultyouth, or deposit only.

There is only one skill you must have for the Canoe Voyage, August 22 to September 1, and a second skill which, if you don’t have it prior to the Voyage, you will have it when you finish!

“Every Scout a swimmer…”

Many of you will remember that phrase from when you were a youth. At the Northern Tier you must be able to swim – the water is deep. Non-swimmers or beginners are not allowed.

Each Voyageur will be required to present a certificate of swimming ability. The requirements are:

  • Jump feet first into water over the head in depth, level off, and begin swimming.
  • Swim 75 yards in a strong manner using one or more of the following strokes: Sidestroke, breaststroke, trudgen, or crawl.
  • Swim 25 yards using an easy, resting backstroke.
  • The 100 yards must be completed in one swim without stops and must include at least one sharp turn.
  • After completing the swim, rest by floating.

This swim classification test can be certified by one of the following people: Aquatics Instructor, BSA; Cub Scout Aquatics Supervisor; BSA Lifeguard; certified lifeguard; swimming instructor; or swim coach. This includes your SCUBA instructor.

Canoeing experience is not required…

Canoeing experience is not required for the Voyage. However it certainly is good to know in advance fore from aft, port from starboard, a sweep from a j-stroke, and how to get into, and out of, a canoe without swamping.

If you do not have canoeing experience, at least pick up a copy of the Canoeing Merit Badge Book and read it several times. And if you get the opportunity to try out some of your book-learned skills in a real canoe, do it! Regardless, when you complete the Canoe Voyage, you will be a competent canoeist.

Questions about the Voyage?


Lee Huckstep at [email protected]

Doug Latimer at [email protected]

Printable form or purchase online: adultyouth, or deposit only.