Great Salt Lake Council

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Great Salt Lake Council
Great Salt Lake Council CSP.png
Owner Boy Scouts of America

525 Foothill Blvd

Salt Lake City, UT 84113
Country United States
Coordinates 40°45′30.9″N 111°50′14.8″W / 40.758583°N 111.837444°W / 40.758583; -111.837444
 Scouting portal

The Great Salt Lake Council is a local council of the Boy Scouts of America and serves the Utah counties of Salt Lake, Tooele and Summit, as well as much of Davis County.


The council is divided into these districts:[1]


The council operates the following camps:[2]

  • Bear Lake Aquatics Base
  • Camp Steiner
  • Camp Tracy
    • Cub Scout Day Camps
    • Webelos Summer Camp
    • Camp Tracy New Scout Experience
    • Camp Traci for Girls
  • Hinckley Scout Ranch Area
  • Teton High Adventure Base

Camp Steiner[edit]

Camp Steiner
Camp Steiner Entrance.JPG
Location Uinta Mountains of Utah
Coordinates 40°43′9.68″N 110°53′5.9″W / 40.7193556°N 110.884972°W / 40.7193556; -110.884972
Founded 1930

At 10,400 feet (3,200 m), Camp Steiner is the highest Boy Scout camp in the United States [3] [4] and the second highest in the world. It was founded in 1930[3] in the Uinta Mountains. The camp is listed in the national historic registry.[3] The camp is located about 30 miles (48 km) outside of Kamas, Utah. The camp lies on the shores of Scout Lake with several other lakes nearby, such as Lofty Lake, Kamas Lake, Castle Lake, Picturesque Lake and Pearl Lake. It has views of Bald Mountain, Reids Peak, Hayden Peak and Mount Agassiz. In 2002 it the camp was expected to host 56,000 boys over the course of the summer.[5]

Camp Steiner is considered the flagship camp for the Great Salt Lake Council. The camp's motto is "Designed to serve the many, but dedicated to serve and embrace the one."


Founded in 1930, Camp Steiner is known for its many traditions including Mountain Man competitions and the Steiner Yell. The reenactment of the siege of Mafeking, followed by the Honor Trail, a dawn hike and the Polar Bear Plunge are all a part of Steiner's program.

The legend of Hyrum is an old folktale about a miner who was blown to pieces in a horrible mining accident. Legend states that Hyrum still hikes the hills of Steiner as a monster of some sort.

The Lost Gold Mine is a true story of LDS miner Caleb Rhoades who mined what were considered to be the richest gold mines in the country. The story of the Rhoades Mines includes an ambush by Butch Cassidy and his "Hole in the Wall Gang." The locations of the mines died with Rhoades, but in his journal he describes a heart-shaped lake surrounded by castles; possibly referring to Scout Lake (formerly known as Heart Lake) and the cliff faces and mountain peaks that can be seen from the lake shores.

The docks on Scout Lake at Camp Steiner.


The main buildings of the camp are the kitchen, the museum, the trading post, the wilderness cabin, the first aid cabin/director's office, the tool shed and the handicraft lodge. The camp has neither electricity nor cell phone coverage. The camp gets its water from a pump system that is gravity powered.

The climbing wall at Camp Steiner is a natural rock face located just above the campfire bowl, which is sometimes referred to as the amphitheater.


The waterfront of Camp Steiner had a tower (which was rebuilt in 2004, yet collapsed in 2009 because of heavy snowfall), a canoe beach and floating docks. Canoeing, rowing, swimming and life-saving merit badges are available. Small-boat sailing was abandoned in 2003 because the winds were never good enough to consistently teach the merit badge, it was brought back in 2008 and 2009, but the Council has not been able to attain sailboats in good enough repair for the camp to use anymore. The lake has a temperature that stays between 35 and 55 °F (2 and 13 °C) during the summer. Passing the swim check is a rite of passage and swimming a mile in the lake is something that only between 10 and 20 people achieve every year. [6]

Steiner offers two different shooting sports: rifle and archery, although these Merit Badges are subject to weather. Several other merit badges are offered at the camp. Merit Badges offered in Handicraft: Basketry, Indian Lore, Leatherwork and Woodcarving. Merit badges offered in Outdoor Skills, once called Scoutcraft: First Aid, Pioneering, Orienteering, Fishing, and Wilderness Survival. Nature merit badges offered: Environmental Science, Bird Study, Soil and Water Conservation, and Forestry. Also for the 2010 season, two of the historic (centennial) merit badges were offered: Signaling and Tracking.

Adventure activities are designed to keep older boys, who may already have Eagles, busy at camp. They include hiking, team building games, and the climbing merit badge. High Adventure staffers teach Leave No Trace training at least once a week.

There is also an action center program that teaches trail to first class.

Hinckley Scout Ranch[edit]

Hinckley Scout Ranch
Location Uinta Mountains of Utah
Coordinates 40°51′44.55″N 110°45′41.3″W / 40.8623750°N 110.761472°W / 40.8623750; -110.761472
Founded 1930

Hinckley Scout Ranch is named after Bryant Stringham Hinckley who was a member of the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Young Men's Mutual Improvement Association and made the case of for the Church to affiliate with the Boy Scouts of America.[7] The camp contains the Thomas S. Monson Lodge a 23,000 Square Foot Building that serves as the centerpiece of the Scout Ranch.[8]


In 2012 the East Fork of the Bear Scout Camp was renamed Hinckley Scout Ranch.[7] Prior to the rename of the camp the contained 3 sub camps: Tomahawk, Frontier and Evergreen.[7]

El-Ku-Ta Lodge[edit]

The first Ordeal for the El-Ku-Ta Lodge of the Order of the Arrow was held at Camp Steiner in June 1956. The ceremony team that conducted the ceremony could have either been from the Ogden area or from the Tannu Lodge in Reno, Nevada.[9]

Executive pay controversy[edit]

In 2007 it was disclosed that the leader of the Great Salt Lake Council received more than $200,000 a year in compensation.[10][11] The issue of executive pay became an issue again in 2011 during the annual Friends of Scouting campaign.[12][13][14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c Wharton,Tom Camp Steiner: Welcome to 'the Holy Grail of camps'. The Salt Lake Tribune, Retrieved July 26, 2016
  4. ^ Arave, Lynn (30 June 2008). "Scout camp still stuck in winter". Deseret News. Retrieved 1 August 2016. 
  5. ^ "Boy Scout camp renews lease". Deseret News. 6 February 2002. Retrieved 1 August 2016. 
  6. ^ "Guide to Utah Boy Scout Camps". MainTour. Retrieved November 27, 2015. 
  7. ^ a b c Finley, Jeff (24 September 2012). "Scout camp to be renamed after Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley's father". Deseret News. Retrieved 1 August 2016. 
  8. ^ Davidson, Lee (20 March 2014). "Scout lodge named after LDS Church President Monson". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 1 August 2016. 
  9. ^
  10. ^ Davidson, Lee (11 November 2007), "Scouts may be thrifty, but some leaders are well paid", Deseret News, retrieved 2011-10-12 
  11. ^ "Boy Scout council leader defends $214,000 compensation", The Salt Lake Tribune, AP, 13 November 2007, retrieved 2011-10-12 
  12. ^ Davidson, Lee (6 August 2011), "Utah Boy Scouts fundraiser kicks off — with high-pressure tactics", The Salt Lake Tribune, retrieved 2011-10-12 
  13. ^ "Q-and-A with Boy Scout councils", The Salt Lake Tribune, 6 August 2011, retrieved 2011-10-12 
  14. ^ Davidson, Lee (21 September 2011), "LDS leader dismissed after criticizing Friends of Scouting", The Salt Lake Tribune, retrieved 2011-10-12 

Further reading[edit]

  • Boren, Kerry Ross (2008), Lest We Forget: A Historical Review of the Great Salt Lake Council, Boy Scouts of America, BSA Great Salt Lake Council, ASIN B0044V5J5W 

External links[edit]