Frequently Asked Questions
Preparing for Camp
Incoming mail will be distributed from the trading post. An adult from the troop must pick up the mail. Mail service into the camp can take more time than you would expect. Five days from Orange County to camp is not uncommon. Please send mail to your Scout the week before they arrive so it is sure to reach them while they are at camp. Mail often arrives too late to get to the Scout and must be returned to sender. Be sure to include a return address on the envelope so we can return it to you if needed.
Mail for Scouts should be addressed to:
Scout’s name and Troop number
(Grace or Irvine, Campsite Name, and Week of camp, if known)
Schoepe Scout Reservation at Lost Valley
31422 Chihuahua Valley Road
Warner Springs, CA 92086
Scouts may send postcards and letters home. Any outgoing mail should be turned into the Trading Post. We have postcards and stamps available for purchase in the Trading Posts.
We do not allow ATV’s, golf carts, motorbikes, or similar devices in camp. Battery powered wheelchairs for medical reasons are allowed.
RV’s: Adult leaders are not permitted to stay in RV’s in any camp parking lot. Nor do we allow RV’s in campsites for the week.
Electrical devices: The only places to charge electrical devices in camp are the dining halls. Campsites do not have electrical power. Please plan accordingly when bringing these devices.
Pets: Pets are not allowed at Lost Valley (this includes the parking lot areas). Please let all families and potential guests know to leave their pets at home. Service animals are excluded however, they must remain on a leash and under adult supervision at all times.
Generators: Generators are not recommended, and must follow our camp noise curfew, 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.
CPAP: Your campsite will not have electrical power for CPAP and similar medical machines that need to have a power source. Please make sure you have a battery powered backup for these machines and if you choose to bring a generator, extra gas.
Even at summer camp, there is always the possibility of an emergency such as a fire or a bad storm. In these situations, it is very important to be able to account for the safety of everyone in camp. To do this, we will call for an emergency mobilization.
If you or your Scouts hear sirens, you should move immediately to the nearest assembly area to your location - regardless of which camp you are staying in for the week. The Staff will account for those in other areas for a total headcount.
The following areas are Emergency Assembly Points (EAP):
Grace Assembly Area: Flagpoles between Grace Pool and Tom Tabb Center.
Irvine Assembly Area: Flagpoles in front of Casey Lodge.
The Staff will then check that everyone is accounted for and, if necessary, give further instructions. Our staff are trained and experienced in managing full out-of-camp evacuations and maintain on-going partnerships with many local emergency service providers.
Lost Valley is a big place, so many Scouts and adult leaders like to bring bicycles to get around. There are also a limited number of bicycles available for rent at the Bike Lair for $5.00 per day or $20.00 per week (including helmet). The roads vary from hard-pack dirt to very soft sand, so we recommend wide tires for traction. We do not provide repair services for bicycles, other than those that are the property of the camp.
Here are some of the rules of the road:
HELMETS - Everyone, both youths, and adults are required to wear a bicycle helmet while riding their bicycle. Also, a Scout hat or baseball cap may not be worn under the helmet.
RIDE ON THE ROADS - Stay on the main roads inside the Lost Valley. Main roads are the roads that the general public can drive on, one exception is the road that leads to the Bike-o-Rama /Grace Trading Post area. Never ride on horse or foot trails; riders must dismount and walk their bike on these trails
OBEY SPEED LIMITS - One of the leading causes of bicycle accidents at Lost Valley is speed. It is especially easy to go fast on the many downhill sections around Lost Valley, but every downhill section is followed by a patch of loose soil/sand caused by erosion that can cause a rider to lose control. The speed limit for bikes is 10 MPH.
RIDE SAFE - Please drive safely; no trick riding! Lost Valley is a wilderness camp; going to a hospital is usually an expensive helicopter flight out of camp.
RIDING ETIQUETTE - If you come upon a horse, please stop your bicycle, dismount, and stand next to your bicycle. This helps to not frighten a horse. If you are passing someone on the road, let them know which side you'll be passing on by announcing, "Passing on your (Right or Left)." Please be aware there will be camp vehicles using the roads during the week.
Cell Phone Coverage
There is NO cellular coverage in Lost Valley from any cellular provider. Some do not provide service east of Temecula.
Phone and Internet Access
Telephone and Internet access is available to all adults visiting Lost Valley. There are five locations available for phone, internet, and computer access: the Business Office, the Trading Post, Beckman Hall, the Stables, and Casey Lodge. These areas have telephone access and a dedicated computer for email access. Adult leaders will be given access codes and passwords during check-in. The codes should not be given to Scouts under any circumstances.
If a Scout needs to make a phone call, an adult leader must accompany the youth to a phone, and place the call for him. Phone calls should be kept to a minimum. Scouts are not allowed internet or e-mail access while at camp.
There is wi-fi access available at the Business Office, Casey Lodge, Beckman Hall, Trading Post, and the Stables. The internet is provided via a satellite connection and is often slower than dial-up speed. Our bandwidth is very limited, so please, keep your online time to a minimum, and no large file transfers or streaming media should be downloaded. The Business Office will assist you in accessing the internet. Please be advised that we have tight filtering, and monitor any attempt to access inappropriate websites.
Smoking is discouraged in camp, but it is permitted in two places: behind Casey Lodge in Irvine and behind Beckman Hall in Grace. Smoking is not allowed inside any of the buildings at Lost Valley. NEVER smoke on the trail! BSA policy prohibits the use of tobacco in the presence of Scouts.
Parents and friends are welcome to visit camp. The Friday schedule of games and the evening stage show make that an especially nice day to visit. If your troop is planning on having visitors on Friday, the Business Manager will need a count of visitors at Check-in on Sunday. This is a popular option, and we need an accurate count to ensure enough food is prepared.
Meals are available at the Dining Halls. For 2024, visitors will purchase meal tickets in the Business Office at a cost of $8 for Breakfast, $10 for Lunch, and $12 for Dinner. All visitors must sign in at the Business Office, obtain their ID tags, and purchase meal tickets at the Trading Post.
Please inform your troop members and families about the directions to camp, parking, and also about allowing sufficient time and gasoline. All visitors during the week should plan to arrive at camp between 9:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Please remember that the speed limit within camp is 5 miles per hour. Visitor parking is located in the Main Parking Lot near the Front Gate.
Age Requirements on Merit Badges
We want Scouts to be safe. We also want them to complete the merit badges they start, not quit in frustration when they find out they aren’t ready for it yet. Younger Scouts (usually age 13 or less) may not yet be up to the challenge of some merit badges and activities. Generally, it is up to each department director to use their discretion on which Scouts are ready to safely enjoy an activity or work on a merit badge.
Some merit badges that may be better suited for older Scouts include:
Rifle Shooting and Shotgun Shooting. Scouts need physical strength to handle the firearms safely and must be able to achieve a set shooting score.
Archery: Students must be able to draw the bow repeatedly and achieve a minimum score to complete the merit badge.
Rock Climbing requires physical strength and coordination.
Horsemanship also requires strength to saddle and control the horse.
Lifesaving requires strength and stamina in the pool.
Metalwork and Welding require the maturity to handle red-hot metal. There is age an age minimum of 13 and older on the Metalwork merit badge.
Project COPE: This requires a good deal of maturity and physical strength. The age minimum for COPE is 13 years old.
Swimming and Water Rescue and Paddle Craft Safety: There is a National BSA age restriction of 16 years old and up on both activities.
There are many opportunities for rank advancement at Lost Valley, both at our Trail to First Class center and in your own campsites. In order to preserve the Troop-centered model of advancements, Lost Valley Staff Members are not allowed to sign off requirements for Tenderfoot, Second Class, or First Class Ranks in Scouts' Handbooks. Scouts will receive a Passport with the requirements that they will be able to complete while at Lost Valley. Staff members will sign off the Passport as requirements are completed. Scouts will need to demonstrate the skills they learned to adult leaders within their Unit to be signed off.
MERIT BADGE APPLICATIONS (“BLUE CARDS”)
Lost Valley has moved to using Blackpug’s digital blue cards. Troops and Scouts should not bring blue cards to camp. Blackpug/247Scouting offers digital blue cards as well as advancement reports for leaders to use.
Thursday of each week, the program team will put on a Blue Card Party for adults to check-in on the progress of their Scouts before Merit Badge make-ups on Friday. All digital blue cards will be updated and ready to print by the week following the Troop’s departure.
We regret that the Lost Valley Staff are unable to sign off any merit badge work completed outside of the camp without prior arrangements.
Maverick Camper Bluecards
Maverick Scouts who attend without their troops are under the leadership of the Provisional Scoutmaster for the week. All decisions made by the Provisional Scoutmaster for the Scout during the week are final. Maverick digital blue cards will also be available through Blackpug/247Scouting.
Special Dietary, Medical, or Program Needs
We will endeavor to accommodate any special medical dietary requirements, medical, or program needs of your Scouts and adult leaders. We need to know what these are so we have time to make accommodations for your needs.
While we endeavor to have foods available for those with dairy and wheat allergies, if one of your Scouts has extreme allergies, parents may want to send meals to camp. These may be stored in the camp kitchen and served in place of the camp food. Meals will need to be labeled with the Scout’s name and troop number. We are unable to provide detailed ingredient lists in advance. We will make every effort to accommodate your needs. The Scout MUST identify himself to the food service staff as someone that has special medical dietary restrictions. As much of our food is served cafeteria style, the Scout must be responsible for food choices that meet his medical dietary restrictions. Please provide at least 2 weeks advance notice of dietary needs.
Accommodations can be made in many of our program areas for those with physical limitations. Even COPE can be accommodated if you will work with the Camp Staff. We encourage all Scouts to do their best and challenge themselves. Just let us know what your needs are and we will do our best to help.
Please email program request, special dietary requests and additional questions to email@example.com
or call at 714-923-3191 ext. 107