Cimarron, New Mexico Bears, Bucks And Boy Scouts

At New Mexico's Philmont Scout Ranch, troops hit the wilderness trail, with a few modern twists

In the shadow of New Mexico's Sangre de Cristo Mountains, a buck with a velvet rack picks his way across a steep hillside, followed by three does. Hearing a noise, the deer turn toward a meadow filled with oak trees and sunflowers that glisten like gold coins. A band of backpacking Boy Scouts stare wide-eyed at this moment of natural theater.

The scouts are from Troop 501 in La Canada-Flintridge, Calif., a suburb of Los Angeles. They've begun the first day of a trek at Philmont Scout Ranch, the 215-sq.-mi. wilderness near Cimarron, N. Mex., that is scouting's premier "high adventure"...

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