Great Southwest Council, Boy Scouts of America Heading


Scout Office and High Desert Scout Shop CLOSED through April 10. More HERE

An Important Update: Scouting and Coronavirus: UPDATE - Summer Events

The Great Southwest Council is committed to providing safe and healthy Scouting activities, including Cub Scout Day Camps and all activities at Gorham Scout Ranch. In response to COVID-19, we are assessing our programs to ensure the safety of our participants. This situation is not unique to our Council and we are consulting the BSA national office, other councils, industry leaders, and COVID-19 experts. 

The Great Southwest Council is closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and following CDC, federal, state, and local guidelines for mitigating the spread of the virus and for keeping our Scouts and leaders safe. We are hopeful that we will be able to open Gorham Scout Ranch for all of the 2020 summer camping events as scheduled, including Brownsea, NYLT, Summer Camp, Webelos Week in the Woods and Cub Scout Family Camp. The camp leadership has created a plan that adds additional precautions to ensure a safe and healthy camp for all Scouts and leaders that attend.

While we are hopeful that we can hold camp, due to the uncertainty of the progress of eradicating the threat of COVID-19 among the general public, the Council’s leadership will make final determination on whether or not to open Gorham Scout Ranch on April 15. If the Council is unable to open camp this summer, a virtual merit badge camp program will be introduced on the 15th for your Scouts as an excellent option for summertime Scouting activity. 

During these uncertain times, be sure to take care of yourselves and your families. Please wash your hands, sanitize and disinfect contact surfaces and keep up to date with advisories and recommendations from public health authorities. Thank you for your patience as we all navigate through these challenging times. Thank you for your generous support of Scouting and the Great Southwest Council.


BSA Restructuring Information and Updates

The national organization has established a dedicated restructuring website,

This site includes a helpful Resources pagewhere you will find a short video explaining what Chapter 11 means for Scouting, as well as a FAQ. The site’s Milestones page will be your best source for the latest updates throughout this process. 

Support Scouting - Give ONLINE Today...

Donate NowPlease take a moment to support the Great Southwest Council through our annual giving campaign. All donations stay locally to support Scouting in the Great Southwest Council!

Returning for 2020... the Gondola Patrol! The Gondola Patrol is the Great Southwest Council's recurring gift club. Become a member by contributing $15 per month via your credit or debit card. Click HERE to complete the pledge card. Send to or drop off to the Scout Office to join today.

We need your help!

Council President, Dr. Stephen Christiansen requests our members to let us know if you are aware of potential Scout supporters in the community.  Please click here for more information

2020 Governor's Charity Ball

Postponed, but not cancelled! In compliance with the state mandated public health order that prohibits group meetings of more than 100 individuals, the Governor's Charity Ball will be postponed. As soon as we get the new date, we'll update here. We appreciate the Rotary Clubs commitment to the health of the community.  

The Great Southwest Council has been chosen as a beneficiary of this year's Governor's Ball, and we want you to join in the fun! Rotary Del Sol is sponsoring the building of a new Welcome/Training Center at our very own Gorham Scout Ranch. We are asking you to become a sponsor, buy tickets, or donate an item to the silent auction. This is an excellent opportunity for you to promote your business to thousands of New Mexicans through their promotional campaign. This is going to be a HUGE event! To see sponsorship packages and benefits, go to


Cub Scout Day Camp: Down on the Farm


Cub Scout Day Camp is an outdoor experience where Cub Scouts participate in individual and team sports, games, crafts, explore nature and work on
required adventures and electives. They get to shoot BB guns and bows & arrows. Having fun in the outdoors - that's Cub Scout Day Camp.

There will be four sessions this summer:

  • Los Alamos- June 3-5
  • East Mountains- June 4-6
  • Four Corners Area- June 11-13
  • West Albuquerque- June 17-19

There will also be one-day Adventure Day Camps in Zuni Mountain and Los Lunas. Day Camps are organized and led by teams of volunteers. This summer's theme is "Down on the Farm".

Click HERE for more information about each Cub Scout Day Camp in our Council


STEM Scouting!

The Greater Albuquerque Housing Partnership is home to STEM Lab 1.618 - a group of Scouts learning Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math topics. Through fun and engaging experiments and modules, Scouts stretch their knowledge while learning the principles of the Scout Law and Oath. 

STEM Merit Badge Fair Click Here for information and registration: STEM Merit Badge Fair

This event has been temporarily postponed. Everybody with a current paid registration will be given first consideration when we reschedule. Thank you for your understanding.


STEM Merit Badge Fair

Please Welcome our Merit Badge Sponsors!

New to the Great Southwest Council are Merit Badge Sponsorships. These businesses and groups are Scouting supporters that will also provide opportunities for Scouts to earn merit badges related to their occupational field or interest(s). 


Friends of the Cumbres & Toltec Railroad - for Railroading Merit Badge

DKD Electric - for Electricity Merit Badge

Davis Kelin Law Group - for Law Merit Badge

Facebook - for Digital Technology Merit Badge

McCormack Consultants - for Entrepreneurship Merit Badge

Dr. Steven Komadina - for Horsemanship Merit Badge

Albuquerque ER & Hospital - for First Aid Merit Badge

Jiffy Lube - for Automotive Maintenance Merit Badge


TLC - Plumbing Merit Badge

Riverpoint Family Dentistry - Dentistry Merit Badge

If you or your company would like to become a Merit Badge Sponsor, contact your district executive for more information.

Thank you to these Scouting supporters!!!

Scouting for the Whole Family... Scouts BSA Girl Troops Launched!!!

The BSA’s mission is to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law.

Our priority is to bring the benefits of Scouting to more youth while remaining true to our mission.

As of February 1, there are now Scouts BSA Troops open for girls ages 11-17 to join. Contact us to find a nearby Troop or to get assistance starting one for girls in your neighborhood (505) 345-8603.

Click HERE to learn about exciting summer programs available for Scouts BSA girls at Gorham Scout Ranch.

Read more here.

Safe Scouting: BSA Incident Reporting

Timely, clear, concise, and complete incident reports allow for an appropriate response and an opportunity for analysis while promoting continuous improvement of our programs. You can now report incidents, near misses, and youth protection / membership infraction incidents to your local council or enter them yourself.

For information on reporting an incident, including report forms, click HERE


Read the current Trailmarker HERE


Other Announcements:

Summer Camp 2020 @ Gorham... Make your Reservation Today

The Leaders Guide for the 2020 Summer Camp season is now available. Click HERE for the Leaders Guide.


2020 promises to be another exciting summer at Gorham Scout Ranch. COPE and ATV Adventure are excellent programs for older Souts.


The NEW Frank Rand High Adventure program includes off-site hiking, mountain biking, whitewater rafting, and ascending the highest peak in New Mexico... Mount Wheeler.


There will be adult leader training opportunities as well. CPR/First Aid, Wilderness First Aid, and Scout Leader training courses will be offered weekly.


There are only four weeks of Scouts BSA summer camp in 2020. Now is the time to make a reservation to make sure your Troop gets to attend the week of their choice. Be sure to take advantage of the "Early Bird" Discount (information in Leaders Guide and on reservation form). In order to be eligible for "Early Bird" rates, Troops must make their reservation and submit deposit by February 15, then pay remainder of registration fees by April 30.


Making a reservation is easy. Visit our website,, and follow the instructions on the front page. You can also submit the form HERE with a $250 deposit to the Council office.

Cub Scout Family Camp & Webelos Week in the Woods

Two Great Events at Gorham during the Summer of 2020

Cub Scouts and Webelos Scouts have an excellent opportunity to camp at the Great Southwest Council's premier location, Gorham Scout Ranch.


Cub Scout Family Camp: Memorial Day Weekend & Labor Day Weekend...Kick-off or close-out an exciting summer with a family camping weekend.There are lots of activities, the facilities are excellent, and the whole family has fun.


Webelos Week in the Woods: July 13-17... This resident camping experience is designed to give Webelos Scouts a taste of what summer camp is like for a Troop. Lots of fun adventures, advancement activities and more. Perfect event for a Webelos Den.


Click HERE for more information about these exciting Cub events at Gorham in 2020

Camperships are Available

The Order of the Arrow promotes camping and, in this spirit, does not want any Scout or Venturing Scout to miss the opportunity to attend a summertime camping or training program, offered by our Council that provides a BSA camping and/or learning experience.


A Scout is Thrifty. The Boy Scouts of America and the Order of the Arrow encourage every Scout to pay their own way for Scouting activities, as this philosophy supports the basic aims of Scouting. However, we realize that Scouts need a little extra help at times to participate.


Camperships are limited to registered youth members of the Great Southwest Council. Lodge Camperships may not be used for out-of-Council programs.


Visit the Campership page HERE on our website for applications and forms for Cub Scout camping and Scouts BSA camping.

Work at Summer Camp, Apply NOW!

Gorham Scout Ranch provides the best summer camp program in the Southwest. The reason the camp's program is so great is because Gorham has an amazing, talented camp staff.


We are now accepting applications for over 21 year-old positions, as well as youth staff and staff-in-training.


Click HERE for the application.


Partnership for Scouting

Click HERE for the Final 2019 Partnership Report, current as of January 31st, 2020.  The report has been updated from the December version to include any JTE forms received, and the latest Popcorn sales, Friends of Scouting contributions, and year-to-date totals for any Gondola Club donations connected to a specific unit.  Congratulations to the 54 units in the Council that achieved Partner status!  


The initial report for 2020, looking at membership data, will be posted in March or April, depending on the progress of the annual rechartering effort.


Be sure to plan to become a Partnership unit in 2020 in order to take advantage of the benefits you earn for 2021, including the insurance fee rebate and pinewood derby cars for Packs. If there are any questions about the data listed, please contact Dale Balmer,


Click HERE to see a list of benefit units have actually received this year from their participation in the Partnership program!


Click HERE to open an Excel spreadsheet that allows you to calculate the value of different Partner benefits to your unit.


Please Support Businesses in our Community that Support Scouting!

BSA Gift Plan

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Gorham Scout Ranch Video

Tufts Study Video

Brownsea Video