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BSA High Adventure Documentary - Camp Parsons's video poster

A short film about Scouting, High Adventure Trekking, and Olympic Mountaineering history at Camp Parsons, Chief Seattle Council. Read more

Bozeman, MT Documentary
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This project was successfully funded on May 24, 2013.

A short film about Scouting, High Adventure Trekking, and Olympic Mountaineering history at Camp Parsons, Chief Seattle Council.

Bozeman, MT Documentary
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About this project

Update: Funding Goal Reached! Help us premiere this film in a Bozeman Theater by helping us reach our stretch goal of $5,400!

Camp Parsons is the oldest continuously-operating Scout Camp in America. It's also home to the storied "Silver Marmot High Adventure Program," one of the most famous high adventure experiences for Boy Scouts in the USA. This film follows six modern day Boy Scouts on their quest to cross Washington's Olympic Mountains and connect to Scouting and Olympic mountaineering traditions dating back to the early 1900s.

Here's the Deal:

I'm Ryan Jordan.

I'm a Camp Parsons staff alumnus, and served on the staff there from 1987 to 1992. During that time, I was a Hikemaster, High Adventure Program Director, and Program Director. I was awarded the Marmot Rank in 1992 after serving as the Program Director. While on the camp staff, I discovered this beautiful girl at Camp Parsons. She was the Camp Director's daughter. I married her. We celebrated our 20th anniversary last year. I took our son and his Montana BSA Troop to Camp Parsons when he became a Boy Scout. You see, CP is in my blood. Deep. Real deep.

More recently, I founded Backpacking Light (, and serve as the Montana Council BSA High Adventure Committee Chair. I'm a former Scoutmaster with Troop 676 in Bozeman, Montana, currently coordinate the troop's high adventure programming, and serve on the National Task Force Committee for the BSA Field Book. I founded, and teach, the Ultralight High Adventure Leader Training in Montana.

Oh yeah, I'm a hiker, expedition adventurer, Eagle Scout, and storyteller.

The purpose of this project is to tell the story of Scouting, High Adventure, Camp Parsons, and a young group of ambitious boys on a wilderness expedition in the Olympic Mountains of Washington State.

The Story

On June 30, 2013 six Boy Scouts from Montana will arrive on the beach at Dabob Bay and check into Camp Parsons. From there, we'll travel to the west side of the Olympic range and attempt a trek on one of a number of routes (we'll make final route decisions there, as our choice will depend on the snowpack and runoff) that will take us through the Olympic Rainforest, and maybe up and over the glaciated flanks of Mount Olympus and the Bailey Range, and drop us back down to the eastern slope of the range near Camp Parsons.

This film will tell the story of the Scouts' experience as they attempt this exciting expedition!

In addition, you'll learn about the history of the Silver Marmot program, its role in shaping the lives of boys for the past 100 years, and its impact on Olympic exploration in the early part of the 20th century.

The story will be told through interviews of current and former program staff and Scouts, historical photographs (some of which are nearly 100 years old), and of course, footage from the 2013 expedition.


This film will achieve the following goals:

1. The Scouts participating in this project will learn about, and meet the requirements for the Cinematography Merit Badge.

2. The primary outcome of this project will be a 20-25 minute short documentary with the following storylines:

  • A wilderness high traverse of the Olympic Mountains attempted by Camp Parsons High Adventure Staff and Boy Scouts from Troop 676 of Bozeman, Montana.
  • History and philosophy of the Camp Parsons High Adventure Program.
  • Role of high adventure in Scouting.


This film will offer the following benefits:

  • It will be made freely available online to promote Scouting.
  • An unrestricted license will be offered to Camp Parsons and the Chief Seattle Council for use in promoting Camp Parsons and the Silver Marmot High Adventure Program for recruiting and fundraising.
  • Training young men in the process of creating a cinematic production for the big screen, from start to finish.

The Team

  • Ken McEdwards, Camp Director, Camp Parsons
  • Mike McNellis, Assistant Camp Director, Camp Parsons
  • Ryan Jordan, Trekking Crew Advisor & Film Producer, Backpacking Light & Troop 676
  • Frank Meyer, Trekking Crew Advisor, Troop 676
  • Chase Jordan, Life Scout, Troop 676
  • Walker Roy, Star Scout, Troop 676
  • Aiden Fink, Star Scout, Troop 676
  • Nik Torgerson, Star Scout, Troop 676
  • Erick Lawrence, First Class Scout, Troop 676
  • Andrew Meyer, First Class Scout, Troop 676
  • Jackson Redmon, First Class Scout, Troop 676


Proceeds raised through Kickstarter will be used for the following:

  • Professional post-production: edits, titling, audio, color grading;
  • Media hosting and bandwidth;
  • Travel and program fee stipends for Scout participants in the trek;
  • Expenses associated with the film premiere.

Learn More

These boys were the stars of the short film "Boys in the Wild". Learn a bit about their trekking and wilderness camping style by watching the movie.

And, be sure to check out the Troop 676 Website.

Feel free to review another Kickstarter documentary film campaign that I've run as well.

Risks and challenges

Risks include Lions, Tigers, and Bears.

OK, so maybe not lions and tigers.

Here are the key risks:

The team consists mostly of teenagers. How on earth can a group of teenagers band together to do something like this? Well, this is a unique group of teenagers. These are the same kids that traversed the Beartooth Range, braved harrowing descents into the Black Canyon, held their shelters down during fierce storms in the Tobacco Root Mountains, and most recently, made a bold crossing of the Spanish Peaks Range. They've worked together before, they know each others' limitations, and they understand each other. They're brothers.

That said, teenagers are busy - school, music, sports, Scouts, now they're involved in film production? The only risk is the inevitable small delays here and there associated with the usual day to day demands of teenagers: "I've got a paper due tomorrow!" or "I didn't get my chores done, I'm grounded til Monday..." or "I forgot to take off the lens cap!" OK, that last one applies more to me (Ryan) than them, but you get the idea.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter


Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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    5 backers

    Executive Producer - your name in the credit reel of the film!

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    10 backers

    THE PATCH! Yep, we're makin' a patch. This is a Scout gig, we gotta have a patch! (+all of the above).

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    2 backers Limited (98 left of 100)

    MOVIE SCREENING PARTY! Receive an invite to our post-trek / movie screening party, where we'll show the film, present the Cinematography Merit Badges to the participants, and have the Scouts on hand to share some of their stories from the trek and sign autographs! Get your photo taken with these explorers! We'll provide the snacks!

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    18 backers

    THE DVD! Receive the documentary on DVD once it's finished (+all of the above).

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    8 backers

    THE HD DOWNLOAD! Download the documentary in full, 1080p HD when it becomes available, before the public release of the film and availability of the DVD! (+ all rewards above)

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    4 backers

    TREKKING SHIRT SPONSOR! This reward helps purchase high performance synthetic trekking shirts for the trekkers - your name (and logo, if applicable) will appear on the shirt! Plus, you'll get one of the shirts, signed by all of the Scouts and Leaders/Crew in the film! (+ all awards above).

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    0 backers Limited (6 left of 6)

    ADOPT-A-TREKKER - This award provides a Scout participating in this film with help to pay about half of his expenses (program fees + travel) for participating in the Camp Parsons Silver Marmot High Adventure Program. These funds will be distributed equally to all Scout participants and will be used only to pay for the program fee and travel cost. You will be recognized in the closing film credits. (+ all awards above)

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    2 backers Limited (10 left of 12)

    FLAG SPONSOR! This reward buys you a flag with your name on it that we'll fly at a scenic location during the trek, and show in the closing credits of the film! Plus, we'll all (Scouts and Leader Crew!) sign your flag and send it back to you for display! (+ all awards above).

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    TITLE SPONSOR! This reward will recognize your contribution (including company name and logo, if applicable) in the opening credits of the film (+ all awards above).

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Funding period

- (30 days)