Scouting in New Mexico

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Great Southwest Council)
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Scouting in New Mexico
Philmont Scout Ranch Tooth of Time 2004.jpg
The Tooth of Time, an icon of Philmont Scout Ranch
Southwest Chief @ Raton NM.jpg
Scouts arriving in Raton
 Scouting portal

Scouting in New Mexico has had a rich and colorful history, from the 1910s to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live. The state is home to the Philmont Scout Ranch.

Early history (1910–1950)[edit]

Burnham with BSA Troop, Carlsbad Caverns, 1941

On May 11, 1941, the Boy Scouts of America honored Major Frederick Russell Burnham on his eightieth birthday, at Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico. Burnham had only recently returned from Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge which he had dedicated with the Boy Scouts in Arizona after a long campaign to save the Desert Bighorn Sheep.[1]

In 1918, the Albuquerque Council (#412) was founded. It changed its name to the Bemalillo County Council (#412) in 1926. The council changed its name again in 1927 to the Rio Grand Area Council (#412). In 1934, the Rio Grande Area Council became the Northern New Mexico Council (#412).

In 1920, the Carlsbad Council and the Roswell Council (#413) were founded. They merged in 1924 to become the Pecos Valley Council (#413). In 1925, the Pecos Valley Council became the Eastern New Mexico Council (#413).

In 1927, the Gila Grande Council (#579) was formed, merging with the El Paso Area Council (#573) in 1930.

In 1927, the Kit Carson Council (#574) was formed, merging with the Rio Grande Council (#412) in 1929.[2]

Recent history (1950–1990)[edit]

In 1955, the Northern New Mexico Council (#412) became the Kit Carson Council (#412). The council changed its name in 1976 to the Great Southwest Area Council, and again in 1982 to the Great Southwest Council (#412).[2]

Scouting in New Mexico today[edit]

There are five Boy Scouts of America (BSA) local councils in New Mexico.

Conquistador Council[edit]

Conquistador Council (#413)
OwnerBoy Scouts of America
HeadquartersRoswell, New Mexico
CountryUnited States
 Scouting portal

Located in southeast New Mexico, the Conquistador Council office is in Roswell, New Mexico.


  • Chisum Trail District
  • El Llano Grande District
  • Oil Patch District
  • Rio Hondo District


Order of the Arrow[edit]

The Kwahadi Lodge #78 of the Order of the Arrow serves local Arrowmen.

Grand Canyon Council[edit]

Grand Canyon Council serves Scouts in Arizona and New Mexico.

Great Southwest Council[edit]

Great Southwest Council (#412)
OwnerBoy Scouts of America
HeadquartersAlbuquerque, New Mexico
CountryUnited States
 Scouting portal

The Great Southwest Council is headquartered in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and provides Scouting to youth in northern New Mexico, northeast Arizona, Utah south of the Colorado River, and the Durango and Mesa Verde areas of Colorado.


  • Anasazi District
  • El Valle Manzano District
  • Mesa Verde District
  • Rio Grande District
  • Sangre de Cristo District
  • Santa Fe District
  • Zuni Mountain District
  • Sandia District


The Great Southwest Council's summer camp program is based at the Gorham Scout Ranch,[3] located near Chimayo, New Mexico[4] northwest of Pojoaque, New Mexico.[5]

Great Southwest Council is home to Cimarron, New Mexico's Philmont Scout Ranch, the oldest of the national high-adventure bases operated by the Boy Scouts of America.

Although the Mesa Verde District[6] of the Great Southwest Council includes San Juan County, Colorado, the council no longer owns or operate the Cascade Scout Camp located in the San Juan National Forest, north of Durango, Colorado, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[7]

South Plains Council[edit]

South Plains Council serves Scouts in Texas and New Mexico.

Yucca Council[edit]

Yucca Council serves Scouts in Texas and New Mexico.

Girl Scouting in New Mexico[edit]

Girl Scouting in New Mexico
New Mexico-gsusa.svg
Map of Girl Scout Councils in New Mexico
 Scouting portal

Three Girl Scout Councils serve New Mexico.

Girl Scouts Arizona Cactus-Pine Council[edit]

Most of this district is in Arizona but as the Navajo Nation straddles the border the portion of it in northwestern New Mexico is also included in this district.

Girl Scouts of New Mexico Trails[edit]

Girl Scouts of New Mexico Trails
HeadquartersAlbuquerque, New Mexico
CountryUnited States
 Scouting portal

Girl Scouts of New Mexico Trails serves some 5,000 girls in 23 counties in northern and central New Mexico. It was formed in November 2007 by the merger of the two previous councils of Sangre de Cristo and Chaparral.


  • Camp Elliott Barker located near Angel Fire, NM
  • Rancho del Chaparral located in the Jemez Mountains

Girl Scouts of the Desert Southwest[edit]

Formed from the May 1, 2009 merger of Zia, Permian Basin and Rio Grande Councils. Serving Southern New Mexico & West Texas.


Service Centers in New Mexico


Scouting museums in New Mexico[edit]

The Scouting Museum of New Mexico, run by Dennis Downing at 400 South First Street in Raton, New Mexico, is open daily from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm from June through August, and by appointment from September through May. Privately owned at a private facility, displays include Wood Badge, Philmont, Order of the Arrow, National Jamboree, international Scouting, Scout books and magazines, videos, reference library, and also rotates loaned exhibits, in the summers only. Admission is free.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Edward H. Saxton (March 1978). "Saving the Desert Bighorns". Desert Magazine. 41 (3). Retrieved 2008-04-27.
  2. ^ a b Hook, James; Franck, Dave; Austin, Steve (1982). An Aid to Collecting Selected Council Shoulder Patches with Valuation.
  3. ^ Scouts BSA Camp Program, Great Southwest Council, 2009. Accessed 2009-02-24.
  4. ^ Year-Round Use of Camp, Great Southwest Council, 2008. Accessed 2009-02-24.
  5. ^ Map to Camp, Great Southwest Council, 2009. Accessed 2009-02-24.
  6. ^ Mesa Verde District, Mesa Verde District of Great Southwest Council, 2009. Accessed 2010-01-30.
  7. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.