What is PSR-PASS?

The Philmont Advisor Skills School conducted at Philmont Scout Ranch (PSR-PASS) is an exciting 4-day, 3-night program developed to help adult advisors in confidently leading their crew in Philmont trek preparations. PSR-PASS participants will enjoy an instructional introduction to Philmont and achieve a thorough understanding of the following:

  • Land navigation
  • Hiking etiquette and safety
  • Setting up a campsite in Philmont’s backcountry
  • Smellables
  • Bear bag hanging
  • Dining fly and tent setup
  • Gas stove operation and care
  • Philmont’s backcountry cooking method
  • Dish washing and sanitation
  • Sump use
  • Campfire procedures
  • Efficiently breaking camp
  • Crew leadership positions
  • Preparing youth leaders prior to your trek
  • Physical conditioning
  • Travel to and from Philmont
  • Conducting a shakedown hike
  • Establishing a crew Philmont committee

PASS programs provide key experience to crew advisors to encourage constructive and smooth preparations for your Philmont trek.


PSR-PASS is held at Philmont Scout Ranch in the rugged Sangre de Cristo Mountains of Northern New Mexico.


Dates for 2017 are not yet decided, but training sessions are typically hosted on weekends throughout September and October.

Revised on 1/24/2017


PSR-PASS features a one night adventure into the Philmont backcountry led by experienced members of Philmont's Ranger and Backcountry Departments and training sessions in base camp.

Day 1 (Friday) The PSR-PASS program begins with receiving tenting accommodations and gear, then an introduction to Philmont to familiarize yourself with the Ranch, our operation, and the training you will receive over the course of the weekend. You should plan to arrive at Philmont by 5:00 pm. Note: transportation to/from Philmont Scout Ranch is not provided.

Day 2 (Saturday) Activities include a gear shakedown and base camp tour. Participants will be transported into Philmont’s backcountry wilderness. After hiking to a backcountry trail camp, the PASS Instructors will lead you in learning the fundamentals of camping at Philmont.

Day 3 (Sunday) Begins by wrapping up backcountry instruction and returning to base camp. Activities for Sunday include a tour of Waite Phillip’s summer home, the Villa Philmonte, as well as a classroom session regarding crew leadership positions and forming high adventure committees. The session will include materials to share with those at home. Additionally, the Tooth of Time Traders – The Official Philmont Store – will be open for gear and souvenir purchases. The day will conclude with a special dinner banquet to recognize your training.

Day 4 (Monday) Breakfast is provided and you are free to depart Philmont and bring your newly learned skills back to your crew.


All adult advisors – whether registered for an upcoming trek, or just generally interested in learning more about Philmont – are invited to attend a Field-PASS course. To maximize learning opportunities and student-to-teacher ratios, only 20 adult advisors are accepted for each weekend course.


Philmont will provide the following: tents, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, backpacks, cooking equipment, and typical crew gear (cooking pots, trail food, etc.). Participants need to provide their own clothing and personal items such as a headlamp, bowl, spoon, etc.


The cost to attend is and covers lodging, gear, eight meals, and PASS materials including the PASS Patch.


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.