2020 PSA PhilBreak

by | Oct 21, 2019 | Gathering, Philbreak, Service Projects

Registration is open!

2020 PhilBreak begins in...








PSA PhilBreak Expands For 2020

multiple sessions, lower cost, more activities, airport and Amtrak shuttles

The 2019 PhilBreak was an exciting, rewarding, exhausting, satisfying week of give-back and contribution to Philmont. Assisting with the 2018 Ute Park fire recovery efforts, PSA members returned to the Ranch this past March to perform timber stand improvement (TSI), slash pile burning, and general debris clearing.

In 2020, PSA members will have 4 Sessions to again help Philmont with the 2018 fire recovery.


The four weeks for PSA members are:

  • Session 1: February 29th–March 7th
  • Session 2: March 7th–March 14th
  • Session 3: March 14th–March 21st
  • Session 4: March 21st–March 28th

Registration opens on Friday, November 1st at noon Mountain Time.

Each session will consist of 6 to 12 PSA members and cost only $105. This ultra-low fee will cover all meals and roofed, nightly housing at the PTC. Participants will be driven to the worksite every day. During the week, evening educational lectures, Villa and Scouting Museum tours, and special hours at the Tooth of Time Traders will be offered. On Friday of each session, participants will relax and finish the week with a day hike to a Philmont backcountry location.

To help with transportation, the Raton Amtrak and Albuquerque Airport shuttles will be offered for each session. The cost will be $20 (Raton) and $100 (ABQ). This price covers both pickup and return.

Who Can Attend?

This program is available to PSA members and their eligible family members. The minimum age is 16 years by date of participation. Trek-eligible family members include your spouse, child or stepchild, sibling, parent, grandparent, grandchild, niece, nephew or in-law of the PSA member. Please do not register anyone who does not meet these requirements.

BSA Membership Required

All participants are required to be currently registered with the BSA. You will need to include your BSA membership # at the time of registration. If you are not a BSA member, you can still register for PhilBreak, but you must provide your new BSA # to the PSA Office within 30 days or your registration will be canceled. Obtaining a BSA membership is becoming a little more complicated and time-consuming. If you’re not a member, start the process now to ensure you’re eligible for PhilBreak.

Medical Requirement

Only Parts A and B of the Philmont medical form are required for the 5 working days of PhilBreak. While a doctor’s signature is not required, please note that the PhilBreak program will require hard physical work, long hours, wide-ranging weather conditions, good crew spirit, and a sense of humor. This program is not leisurely. Philmont height and weight guidelines will be enforced. The PSA reserves the right to return the entire registration fee of any person who would be inappropriate for this program. PLEASE NOTE: the 6th day of PhilBreak is an optional organized hike into the Philmont Backcountry. Part C of the medical form will be needed for this activity. Part C requires a doctor’s signature.

Four Weeks to Choose From

You can register for any of the 4 weeks offered. Each week can accommodate 6 to 12 participants. If your chosen week does obtain the minimum number, we will contact you directly and see if you’re willing to switch to another week. If you can’t switch, a refund will be issued.

Tentative Schedule for Each Week

  • Saturday: Arrive at Philmont during the day. You must arrive by 5 PM MST. No late arrivals will be allowed. If you cannot arrive by 5 PM, then you should plan on arriving on the Friday before and stay in Cimarron, Taos, Raton, etc. The first Philmont provided meal will be Saturday dinner in the PTC Dining Hall. In the evening, the Conservation Department will begin the program with introductions and specific plans, gear info, advice, and general Q&A.
  • Sunday through Thursday: Daily transport to the fire area/worksite. Crews will work on various forestry projects. Breakfast and dinner at the PTC. Sack lunch in the field.
  • Friday Day: Day Off! Optional, organized day-hike in Philmont backcountry. Possible day of skiing in Red River (participants provide their own transportation and fees).
  • Friday Evening: Recognition Dinner and final gathering.
  • Saturday: Depart Philmont after breakfast

During the week, special tours (Villa, Scouting Museum) will be offered. In addition, the Conservation Department will be presenting seminars and the Tooth of Time Traders will schedule a special after-hours opening.

Questions and Answers

  1. Are we camping? No. We will spend all nights at the PTC and stay in roofed housing. You will share rooms with other Phil-breakers. We will be transported daily to the worksite.
  2. Do we need a pack? Yes. A good-sized day pack or weekend pack. Every day you will be driven to the worksite, but you’ll need to carry a sack lunch, lots of water (4-6 liters), rain gear, extra warm clothing, gloves, camera, etc.
  3. Will it be cold? Most likely. This is the Backcountry in March at 8,000–9,000 feet. Plan on layers for your clothing. We had significant snow and cold during the 2019 PhilBreak.
  4. Where will we be working? In the Backcountry–multiple locations. It’s too early right now for the Conservation Department to pinpoint exactly where we’ll be working.
  5. Are there multiple PhilBreak sessions? There are four(4) 1-week PSA PhilBreak sessions this year. In addition, there will be OA PhilBreak sessions running concurrently but separately.
  6. Can a spouse or other family member hang out at the PTC while I work every day? No.
  7. Can I arrive later in the week and still participate? No
  8. What are Albuquerque airport shuttle times? Participants must arrive in Albuquerque by 12 noon on the first Saturday and depart after 1PM on the final Saturday.
  9. What happens if the week I’ve chosen does not reach the minimum number of participants? We will contact you and provide the option to switch to another week. If you can’t switch, a refund will be issued.
  10. I’m having trouble obtaining my BSA membership. Can I still attend? No. You must be a registered BSA member. Start the registration process now! Your PhilBreak registration will be canceled if you cannot provide your BSA Membership # at the time of registration or within the following 30-day period.

Contact Us

If you have further questions, please contact us:

Payment Instructions and Refunds

  • Register here on the PSA website first, but then...
  • Payment is made directly to Philmont (address below), not the PSA
  • Philmont accepts checks only, no credit cards or PayPal
  • Make check payable to: "Philmont Scout Ranch"
  • In the memo, please write: "2020 PSA PhilBreak"
  • Philmont’s refund policy: ALL FEES ARE NON-REFUNDABLE. THEY CANNOT BE APPLIED TO FUTURE PSA TREKS OR EVENTS. Emergency situations will be handled by Philmont (not the PSA) on an individual basis.

Send check to this address:
Philmont Scout Ranch
17 Deer Run Road
Cimarron, NM 87714