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El Camino Real Medal for Scouts

White Mountain.jpg

Sponsoring Council

San Diego - Imperial

Award Dimensions


Take a hike of at least 15 miles (or 7-1/2 hours scheduled back pack time) along the El Camino Real.

Map Link (where applicable)

External Reference (where applicable)

Detailed Requirements


All unit leaders should obtain a current copy of San Diego Trek Aid #106, "El Camino Real". This pamphlet contains suggested routes, menus, history and other valuable information. 


1. History 

a. Read at least 2 histories of California, 1 of the 18th and 19th centuries and 1 of El Camino Real or the Missions of Alta California. 

b. Discuss with the Scoutmaster, Advisor or a Counselor appointed by him, the history of El Camino Real with emphasis on the following: 

  • When was El Camino Real established, why, by whom and how; 

  • Life along El Camino Real, food, dress, type transportation, dangers and hardships; 

  • Compare our life with theirs; 

  • Who were the peoples who used El Camino Real; 

  • Locate El Camino Real on a road map and note where today's highways follow the original route. 

2. Visits to Missions and Museums. 

a. Visit at least 3 of the original Alta California Missions (USA), or 2 Missions and an Assistancia (The Parish Church at Santa Ysabel and the Chapel of St. Francis at Warner Springs are Assistancias). 

b. Visit a museum portraying life in California in the 18th and 19th centuries (museum may be one of the Missions visited). 

3. Mission Cooking. 

For lunch and supper of the backpack, use ingredients and foods resembling (as closely as possible) foods used by travelers along El Camino Real. 

a. Trail lunch - cheese (jack or sharp keep better), hard crackers, jerky and dried fruit. 

b. Supper - champerrado, puchero, etc (see Trek Aid #106 for recipes). 

4. Hike the Trail of the Padres. 

a. Take a hike of at least 15 miles (or 7-1/2 hours scheduled back pack time) along the El Camino Real. The hike may be a point-to-point or a 7 ½ mile loop. However, much of El Camino Real is on private lands, in city streets and along highways where hiking is dangerous. Where it is not practical to actually follow El Camino Real, the candidates may hike a designated route known to have been used by the early Padres. These alternate routes must be approved in writing by the High Adventure Team of the Council in which the Unit is located. An alternate route for the San Diego - Imperial Council is shown in Trek Aid #106. 

b. Camp overnight on or near El Camino Real or in a designated campsite nearby. 

5. Comply with the General Requirements. 

NOTE: Candidates shall carry a minimum of water, lunch, First Aid kit and suitable extra clothing.

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