High of 78 low of 66.  October 8th and 9th, 2016 Erbie Trail Head Cecil Cove Loop.  19 in our two groups from Outpost 6 Central AOG 5 leaders and 7 boys and Outpost 343 Grace Community in Branson.  3 Leaders and 4 boys.   

A report by Justin Fisher from Exploring the Ozarks is at the bottom of the pictures.

NO RAIN!  Absolutely perfect weather.  I mean perfect with full MOON!

Rob wrote: "You know I can't believe how blessed I am! I'm turning 49 here in a couple weeks and I'm still able to have a great, wonderful times out backpacking with the Royal Rangers! This weekend we went down to the Buffalo River and camped overnight and then hiked to thundering Canyon Falls and then up to a river bed where we explored a cave. Again, I'm so blessed to have wonderful friends and this wonderful ministry to work with. It was such a blast, from eating Smore's, foil meal dinners, and Dave Yonke's famous steaks, to this morning having cinnamon rolls, donuts and bacon, and then walking along a tremendously slippery path over a small rock canyon where almost everyone in our group slipped and fell at least once. Then watching our group of crazy boys jump in the water underneath the waterfall and swim in the freezing cold water. Then we continued hiking and ate lunch in a riverbed where a cave is located, and yes I couldn't let that opportunity pass me by so I crawled back into the inner part of this cave, bending my body in ways that it shouldn't be bent. (I Will be very sore tomorrow). And then my best hiking friends (whom I used to think were best friends) snuck a 15 pound rock in my backpack that I unknowingly carried all the way back to the vehicles. Great times, great adventures, and lots of laughs. I'll take another ibuprofen here in just an hour for the soreness, and then do it all over again in a couple weeks󾍇"

We had great time.   Click on a picture for a larger view.  Special thanks to David Yonke, Oliver Nash, Rob Batchman, Justin Fisher and Mark Jones for sharing these pictures with you. 

Here is a zip file of all these pictures.

Post by Justin Fisher on this event from Hiking the Ozarks

"Live the Adventure!"

That was our motto for the weekend, as 19 of us from two different Royal Ranger outposts got together and enjoyed each other's company and God's beautiful country, down near the Buffalo National River in Arkansas.

We got to the Cecil Cove trailhead, near Erbie, around 7:30 or 8:00, and soon we were hiking down the trail in the dark, crossing Van Dyke Spring branch, then another 1/4 - 1/2 mile down the trail before picking a spot in the woods to set up camp. It didn't take long for the boys and leaders to all have their tents set up and have some firewood gathered up. The fire was lit, stoves were lit, meals were cooked, fellowship was shared, Rob delivered a GREAT council fire message, and the warm moon-light night sky provided the perfect backdrop for it all.

Saturday was spent cooking breakfast, joking and laughing around, and then soon we were headed down the trail towards Thunder Canyon Falls. As we left the main trail and headed up the small ravine towards the falls, it soon got steep and slick, but ever more scenic and beautiful. When we arrived at the falls, one of the boys from my outpost slipped and fell into the pool at the base of the falls. After a few friendly laughs, the other three boys I brought were soon jumping in and taking a quick swim, before quickly heading back out of the cold water! One boy from the other outpost also decided to join in the fun! These Rangers sure do know how to have fun!!

After drying off and exploring the falls area for a while, we headed back to the main trail, then continued on. Soon, we came to an area of the creek and stopped and had some lunch. It was a good chance to relax and refuel, visit and laugh again. There was a really neat cave that the boys explored for a while, and got really muddy!

Before long, it was time to start heading back, pack up camp, and head home. Everyone was a little tired, but really enjoyed the trip. We all stopped in Harrison for a quick bite to eat, and then headed our separate ways home. It was such a good hike, and those Ranger boys sure do know how to "Live the Adventure!"