Boy Scout Troop 209, Palmerton, recently held it's First Annual Scout Triathlon on Saturday, Aug. 25. Two adult leaders and 12 scouts completed the entire trip.
The first leg started at 12:30 p.m. in Slatington on the Rails to Trails bike path near AF Boyer's Hardware. The troop rode their bikes 5.5 miles to Riverview Park in East Penn Township, where an assistant scoutmaster was waiting with the troop trailer and his truck filled with float tubes and life vests.
The boys donned their vests, stowed the bikes in the trailer, and were on their way for their float to the Lehigh Gap Nature Center.
Two mothers who were planning on joining the float decided to ride back to the Nature Center when there wasn't room for their bikes in the trailer. When the mothers spoke to another group that was enjoying the lazy float down the river, they learned that it would take a lot longer than the two hours planned. They rode their bikes back up the trail looking for the troop, and located them about halfway through the trip.
The leaders decided they would get out once they reached Palmerton, instead of trying to go all the way to the bridge at the Nature Center. The group got their tubes out of the river, let the air out, and hauled them by foot along the trail to the Nature Center where the truck and trailer were waiting with their backpacks.
Once at the Nature Center, they prepared for the last leg of their trip, a two-mile hike up the side of the mountain on the Appalachian Trail. This was the most difficult part of the trip, since everyone had to carry their backpacks loaded with sleeping gear, tents, food for their evening meal, and water. The boys set up camp, made their supper, and settled in for the night.
The next morning, at 6:30 a.m. they were on the trail back to the bottom of the mountain.