2019 Missouri River Expedition – Day 1 & 2

Missouri River Expedition 2019 – Troop 1911

Fourteen members of Troop 1911 embarked on a 5 day journey through the White Cliffs section of the Missouri. Along the way, they visited Lewis and Clark campsites, encountered thunderstorms, coyotes and wind, and made countless memories in the scenic wilds of Montana. These are their stories.

Preparations included a shake-down the day before our departure. Expedition members gathered at Ian’s house to go through their personal and patrol gear to ensure adequate preparation. On the big day, we gathered at the old ShopKo parking lot early and departed for Fort Benton. At the Fort, we were guided by Mark through some of the old town, including a visit to the Hornaday Buffalo.

Hornaday Bison on Fort Benton. This display was a centerpiece at the Smithsonian museum in Washington DC for over 50 years before it was reconstructed and housed in Fort Benton, Montana. The bison were some of the last of the wild herd in Montana. Hornaday’s work with increasing public awareness of the bison is credited in saving the species from extinction. He was also instrumental in the Boy Scouts, and has an award created and named after him. Perhaps some of the young men pictured here will be inspired to earn this award.

Coal banks Camping

That night, we camped at Coal Banks Landing. We found our canoes to use for the trek and registered at the put-in. After reviewing Safety Afloat and some basic canoeing skills, we turned in for the night.

Day 1: Coal Banks to Eagle Creek

The next morning, we packed our canoes and got paddling at about 11 AM. The first stop was lunch a few miles down river. We next stopped at the first crevice in the White Cliffs, where we explored the hoodoos and rock formations while waiting out a storm. We arrived at Eagle Creek around 4 PM, where we set up camp, cooked dinner, and worked on the Astronomy merit badge after dark.

Launching from Coal Banks
Storm passes at the first section of the White Cliffs
Eagle Creek sunset
Eagle Creek sunrise
Eagle Creek Campsite
Astronomy merit badge

Day 2: eagle Creek

We spent a full day at Eagle Creek. We hiked the slot canyon and did a conservation project of watering sapling trees and cleaning up the river bank. Several of the Scouts remarked that the slot canyon hike was the best hike they had ever been on! That night, the Scouts swam and went fishing. Alex even caught a sturgeon!

Group photo on top of the slot canyon.
Luca scales the walls to avoid a puddle.

Hiking back from the slot canyon.
Swimming in the Missouri

Alex snagged a sturgeon
The Sturgeon