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Plan and run a Klondike derby

Planning a Klondike derby is a great team-building exercise requiring leadership and decision-making skills. The best derbies incorporate traditional Scouting skills into fun competitions.

The Scouts of Troop 323, Fruita, Colo., (featured in the November 2007 issue of Boys’ Life magazine) chose to reward patrols with points for their abilities in shotgun shooting, emergency shelter building, fire starting, tug-of-war, sled racing, orienteering and first aid in their Klondike derby.

Here are some other ideas for your next derby:

The Injured Scout: Blindfolded team members must carry one of their teammates on a stretcher through an obstacle course, relying solely on instructions from the Scout on the stretcher.

The Injured Scout, Version 2: Scouts must figure out what condition has stricken a teammate and provide correct treatment, while the teammate can only give them hints on his fake condition, without actually naming it.

The Out-of-Reach First-Aid Kit: A first-aid kit lies just 10 feet away, but you can’t walk over to it. Instead, patrols must use pioneering skills to create a device to retrieve the kit.

The Don’t-Spill-the-Serum Race: Your basic sled race with one twist — there’s a cup of liquid “medicine” (use water) sitting on top of the sled that can’t be spilled during the race.

Click on the link at the top of the page for more ideas in our detailed Klondike derby guide.


Click here for plans for a great Klondike derby sled. Even though our sled is fast and strong, you don’t have to be a master carpenter to build it. Cost of materials is about $100; the plans will set you back a suggested price of $10.

6 Comments on Plan and run a Klondike derby

  1. WahooBoi27 // July 13, 2018 at 10:30 pm // Reply

    Is building a klondike racer hard?

  2. new kid in town // April 1, 2017 at 6:31 pm // Reply

    Klondike derby is probably my favorite scouting derby and I am so excited that I get to plan my districts next year. Thanks boy’s life staff for all the great tips.

  3. FUN!

  4. Going to do our first sled race event for our new pack from El Paso Tx going to be going to White Sands New Mexico and using the white sand instead of snow.

  5. First Class Scout // March 24, 2010 at 3:35 pm // Reply

    At our Klondike Derby our patrol made 227 points out of 390. We came in second.

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