We are about six months away (at the time of this writing) from the opening of the 2008 Philmont summer season. There are many of us that have done Philmont multiple times and do things the Philmont way by habit, not even really thinking about it. There are so many others who have yet to experience Philmont and really don't know what to expect, what to learn, and what to teach their crews.
I put on an advisors-only shakedown for our crew advisors this last October in preparation for our 2008 treks to Philmont. We have a few first-time Philmont advisors going and we wanted to open their eyes to what they were getting into. It was a bit difficult to make a list of what needed to be covered and what was common knowledge. I had a list of things to cover, but the best questions and best learning moments came from the few first-time advisors on the trip.
One of the nice things about this site is that anyone and everyone has very easy access to share their knowledge. The message board allows for useful continuing dialog on topics and questions. Another tool the website provides is the ability to write longer "how to" or "how we do this" articles, and publish these articles for others to read and learn from.
Here is how to write an article and submit it to the PhilmontForum website...
1. Login to the website. You will notice a "User Menu" appears on the left side of the screen just below the login box.
2. Click on the "Write an article or blog entry link" link. When you do that a text editor page will open.
3. Title your article.
4. Write your article. If you already have the article written in another word processing document, you can simply cut and paste the text into the text box. Don't stop here. You aren't done yet!
5. Select the section and category in which the article will be published. There are drop down lists for section and category. Just select the section and category in which your article will best fit. This choice can be changed at any time.
6. Decide whether your article should appear on the website's front page. Select "Yes" or "No" on "Show on front page" to set up your article on the front page.
7. Set the access level you desire for the article: Everybody (anyone viewing the website), Registered (registered users only), or Special (don't use this one).
8. Save your article by clicking on the "Save" button up in the top right of the screen.
Once you have done that, the article will be presented to the administrators (me right now) for review and publishing. I won't change a word. If something needs to be fixed I'll let you know. If not, I'll just push a button and your article will appear on the website.
I built the website in an effort to provide a place where we could share our knowledge and ideas on high adventure skills and trips, and where that knowledge would be stored for others to use later - not just at the time of the dialog. I'd love to see everyone take a role of ownership in the site - ask questions, write articles, reach out and teach others...