STEM Treks

Register by individual Fee
Season Summer Length 12 days and nights
Age 14 by date attending
Crew Size Provisional Crew will be organized by Philmont
Leadership 2 adult leaders provided by Philmont
Registration Anytime

Science – Technology – Engineering – Math


Get an up-close and personal look at the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math behind Philmont’s most popular programs. Specially chosen Rangers, Backcountry, and Conservation Staff will be your guides throughout this 12-day, co-ed trek. Come explore the modern and historical technology used across the ranch while gaining on insider’s perspective on how everything really works.


The STEM Trek is an exciting program at Philmont Scout Ranch for Scouts and Venturers who have an interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Participants will enjoy a 12-day trek throughout Philmont’s 137,493 acres of rugged mountain wilderness in the Sangre de Cristo Range of the Rocky Mountains of northeastern New Mexico.

The STEM Trek will offer each participant the chance to explore the Philmont backcountry in a whole new way! Investigate the why and how behind backcountry programs like rifle shooting, blacksmithing and rock climbing. Led by knowledgeable staff, participants will explore modern scientific principles in physics and biology as well as historical examples of technology employed by miners, loggers and homesteaders during the 19th century.

Topics discussed include chemistry, material science, geology and astronomy, with hands-on activities using forestry tools and examining water quality. The experience of working on such a wide array of projects will provide vital knowledge for use at local council camps and managed areas in the participant’s community when he or she returns home.

STEM Trek participants will work and hike in crews under the leadership of trained Philmont rangers, many of whom have academic backgrounds in the science, engineering, math and technology, and/or years of experience working in an outdoor classroom. Crews will be composed of young men and young women from all over the United States. All crew equipment such as tents, cooking gear and tools, will be provided by Philmont and all participants will be covered by campers’ insurance.

Philmont Scout Ranch covers 215 square miles, with more than 350 miles of trails. Philmont ranges from 6,500 feet to 12,441 feet in elevation above sea level. Because of the remote settings and elevation, participants need to be prepared, both physically and mentally, to handle the challenges of the trek. Philmont experiences a wide variety of weather situations. Participants should be prepared for possible 100 degree days, 40 degree nights, as well as days of rain and even snow. All this adds to the STEM Trek and the Philmont experience.


  • Be a registered member of the Boy Scouts of America. (Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, or Venturer)
  • Be 14 years old by date of participation or 13 and completed 8th grade, but not yet 21 by its conclusion.
  • physically fit, able to lift and handle materials up to 50 lbs. (Philmont height and weight guidelines will
  • strictly enforced).
  • Be in excellent physical condition, able to hike 10 or more miles per day with a 40-50 lb. backpack.
  • STEM Treks are coed.
  • A complete physical examination is required. (BSA Annual Health and Medical Record will be sent to those who are accepted.)

Unit & Local Council Responsibilities

The participant’s unit leader and local council executive must approve only those young adults who meet the qualifications for this program. Philmont is not an easy experience and is a risk for those not physically prepared for the rigors of the New Mexico mountains.

How To Apply

Complete the enclosed application. Apply early for best consideration. Applications will continue to be accepted until all spaces are filled. Have it approved by a parent or guardian, a unit leader and your Scout Executive. Mail your completed application to:

Address: Philmont Scout Ranch
Attn: STEM Trek
17 Deer Run Road
Cimarron, NM 87714
(575) 376-2281
(575) 376-2636

Philmont will notify you of your acceptance. If accepted, a packet of materials will be sent in May to assist you in preparing for your Philmont trek experience.

Program Fee/Scholarships and Travel Information

The fee is for the twelve day experience. A $50 non-refundable deposit is required with this application. The balance of the fee is due at the time of acceptance into the program. Additional expenses, including travel to and from Philmont, as well as miscellaneous purchases, are the responsibility of the participant. Those applicants not accepted will have their deposit returned. Participants canceling acceptance will be eligible for a refund if notification is received at Philmont by May 1. No shows are not eligible for a refund. Scholarship funds are available on a limited basis. See enclosed scholarship application.

Shuttles are available from the Albuquerque, New Mexico and Colorado Springs and Denver, Colorado Airports to Philmont. The shuttles leaves the airport at 1:00 to 3:00 pm, depending on the location, on the day before your scheduled start date, arriving at Philmont at 6:30 to 7:00 pm (approx). The return shuttles leave from 6:00 to 7:30 am on your departure date, arriving at the Airports at 9:45 am to 12:00 noon, depending on location. You may also consider the bus or train arrival at Raton, New Mexico (45 miles from Philmont). A roundtrip shuttle is available from Raton. If you do not arrive by shuttle, plan to arrive at Philmont between 8:00 - 11:00 am on your scheduled start date. The Shuttle information/registration forms will be included in your March packet. Note: Shuttle times may change so please check shuttle registration forms upon receiving them or call Philmont for updated information. The STEM Trek is a twelve (12) day program. Participants depart the morning of the thirteenth (13th) day (August 3 is the departure date).

Additional Information

For additional information about the STEM Trek Program such as shuttle arrangements, physical requirements (annual health and medical record questions), equipment needs, service worksites and hiking questions, contact Philmont Scout Ranch at 575-376-2281 or email camping@philmontscoutranch.org. Another source of information to assist you in preparing for your adventure can be found at http://www.PhilmontScoutRanch.org. During the dates of the program, contact Philmont Scout Ranch at 575-376-2281, seven days a week, and ask for the STEM Trek coordinator or Camping Registration. During this time, Philmont Logistics will also be able to assist with transportation concerns or problems.

STEM Trek Dates

Session #1 Session #2
July 10 - 22 July 16 - 28

Please Note: If less than six participants register for either session by May 1, the session may be cancelled. Participants will be promptly notified and alternative programs suggested.

Shuttle Information

Here participants may find registration information for shuttle services to Philmont Scout Ranch from Denver, Colorado Springs and Albuquerque airports.


About Philmont Scout Ranch

Philmont Scout Ranch, the Boy Scouts of America's premier High Adventure™ base, challenges Scouts and Venturers with more than 214 square miles of rugged northern New Mexico wilderness. Backpacking treks, horseback cavalcades, and training and service programs offer young people many ways to experience this legendary country.