Philmont Council Contingents

Itinerary Selection Process

For your Philmont trek, you will follow an assigned "itinerary."  This itinerary defines which campsites you will go to each night, the programs you will participate in, where you will pick up food, and where water may be found.  The itinerary will also have side hikes -- these are generally nearby peaks you can climb.

For the summer of 2016, there are 35 12-Day itineraries and 15 7-Day itineraries defined by Philmont.

Your crew has to select its itinerary from one of the defined itineraries.  This process begins in March when the Philmont TREKS 2016 Itinerary Guide books are received.  There will be separate books for 7-Day and 12-Day expeditions.  Your book includes a instructions that your crew uses to indicate the top choices of itineraries that it wants.  Crews will enter their choices on an internet website (URL, password, and other information will be sent to the contact person on file with Philmont for the crew).  The website will become operational in early April.  After entering your information and choices, your crew's itinerary will be assigned immediately. 

When picking your itinerary, it is recommended that you try to best fit the itinerary to your crew's interests and abilities.  You should accurately judge the capability and experience of your crew and select an itinerary that is not too aggressive for them.  For example, if you have very young, small Scouts in your crew, it is probably not a good idea to pick a "super-strenuous" itinerary. 

You should try to fit the programs to your crew's interests.  Obviously, with a crew of twelve, there will be widely varying desires and interests so this is an inexact science at best!  By taking the list of programs available at Philmont and using this to survey the crew members you can find those programs that appeal to the majority of the crewmembers.  If you have mostly crew members that have not been to Philmont, you should emphasize programs and select a lower numbered itinerary that provides the maximum number of and time for programs.  Conversely, if your crew has been to Philmont and has participated in most of the programs, you may want to select either a specialized itinerary (climbing, challenges, etc.) or one that climbs a number of the highest peaks at Philmont.

Two documents are available to assist you in the itinerary selection process.  There are 7-Day and 12-Day versions of each.  The first document is a Program Interest survey form.  Copies of this should be printed for each crew member (usually including the adults) and they should rank the programs they are interested in.  The results of these survey's are then entered into a spreadsheet that you can use to help select your itinerary.  It uses some preference information about what your crew's capability and overall interests and the results of the program survey.  It creates three outputs:

  1. a chart (and list) showing the programs that your crew prefers
  2. a list of the itineraries that most closely match these programs and the crew preferences
  3. summary descriptions of itineraries including a campsite elevation graph. 

You can then use these results along with the TREKS 2016 book to make your final selection.

The Program Survey Form and Itinerary Selection Spreadsheet may be downloaded by clicking the buttons below:

    12-Day 7-Day
Program survey form   Program Survey Form (12-Day) Program Survey Form (7-Day)
Itinerary Selection spreadsheet (NOTE that this spreadsheet has macros that must be enabled to work properly.)   Itinerary Selection (12-Day) Itinerary Selection (7-Day)

The program surveys and spreadsheets have been updated to reflect the itineraries and program definitions in the Philmont TREKS 2016 Itinerary Guide books. 

While these tools have been made available for your use, they do not take the place of in-depth discussion and study of the available itineraries by your crew members.  Because they are only tools, the crew has the ultimate responsibility for selecting the best itinerary for your crew.  They may provide you with a starting point for these discussions.

If you have suggestions to making these tools more accurate, easier to use, or other improvements, please let Sid Covington know.   He would also be interested in knowing how useful these tools are to you.

Revision History:
Revision # Date Description
1 2/21 2016 Itineraries
2 3/16 Correct 2015 in instruction text, correct Results to include all programs
3 3/20 Changed wording on Tooth of Time preference, corrected print heading on Itinerary Details hardcopy.
4 3/30 Updated internal program tables -- does not impact calculations
5 4/16 Added "Factor" column for programs in "Tables" to give desired programs more weight in calculations.


Updated:  04/16/2016 17:26