13 thoughts on “Spruce Pond Scout Camp

  1. I may have some photos of this camp and of the lean to at the top of the road. I’ll try to
    scan them and post them soon. It appears the camp was decimated by vandals and very little
    is left to reflect the fantastic camp that I enjoyed from 1972 to 1978 and holds such fond
    memories for me. It was such a devastating blow to see the camp burned down and vadalism
    everywhere I looked. A real crying shame. I was able to salvage the base of our old pot
    belly stove that kept me warm through so many winter camping trips and served to cook up so
    many fantastic meals for us. I was a member of Troop 269 – Bayridge, Brooklyn, NY.

  2. My dealings with Spruce Pond go back before my Cub Scout days. My Dad was duty Camp Master so many times I cannot count. My troop camped there many weeks during Thanksgiving and Christmas vacations during the 1950’s. I was stationed close enough to get to help many Camp Masters until my transfer to Calif & Alaska in 1963. I don’t know how my mom could do a turkey dinner spread on the available stoves during the 1950’s. Many cold day’s I sold many 50 lb bags of coal to scouts and put much lye into the out house holes and carried many rolls of paper up the hills. I inspected many sites to ok the troop leaving. I don’t remember having to really correct errors. I made sure there was a good stack of split wood at the back wall of any lean to. The ones up on the mountain side above the pond #1 to 8 were the best built and were all the same as were the ones on the Goat Trail. My Dads 1935 Chevy & 1955 Plymouth made it up the road to the Camp Master Cabin most times. I remember the lockers for pots, pans, lanterns, axe’s, saws and of course the winter canvas tarps, etc that many of the troops had in the lodge great room. The lean to at the top of the road was one owned by a troop I think # 4 and was real nice. I remember the beautiful view. I don’t remember my troop # but my Dads was #63 @ Baptist Temple on Skmerhorn St just off Flatbush Ave. It broke my heart to find out that the camp had been given up. Todays troops so much need a wilderness camp. With video games young men are not learning how to grow up strong. We need wilderness scouting so much again. Closing Spruce Pond was a bad decision that was made. Well look at the possible decision about W.A. Pouch. Paul Gray CPO-USN SEABEES Retired

  3. To larry Kronoff

    love to view your pic and scans of the camp at spruce pond. Have changed my email since my first post.


  4. I belonged to Trp 105 St Brendans,Bronx NY We where also one of the campmaster trps for Spruce pond,We use to have to stop by Alpine down in NJ to pick up the key for cabin for spruce pd.remember going up to meet the coal delivery also doing FIRE GUARD when during a drought with the indian pumps.Have some great pictures of the place if I could only scan them to send anyway was up there back 5 years or so the place was posted as restricted area the DEC officer happened by told her about BSA trp 105 she told me ok NO GUNS allowed up however it was sad the cabin was gutted and in bad shape it’s sad I have lots of 1960-70’s memories of there:(

  5. I also have great memories of Spruce Pond, the goat trail, the lake frozen in the winter, climbing Look-out point. We learned how to find dead wood , cut and quarter it , build fires to cook on , learned how to cook meals . We made fires in the pot belly stoves , bought coal from the camp master cabin then hiked the 50lb bag of coal up the trail to the lento, getting water from a old hand pump and hiking the water back to our camp . I was in Troop 383 in Canarsie Brooklyn . We also enjoyed The Red Apple Rest. I had great times up there with all of my friends from Canarsie. I would have to guess that we were there around 1977 to 1981. Our troop leaders were great guys Fred Graft,Tommy Graft, Rodger Graft, Al Who I can’t remember his last name maybe it is Al Borjorno . I wish I could remember the few other troop leaders , they would drive us kids up to Spruce Pond every month , teach us how to camp and respect the woods and each other. Great times with Jimmy Malone , John Joe and Pete Castronova, Vinny Cavagnaro, Joe LiDonni, Scott Gambino, Mike Blondo, Jimmy Schroeder Lou and Billy Garcia , just to name a few.

  6. With the exception of the steep hill getting into camp, this was my favorite campsite. I loved the pot belly stoves, even though at least one sleeping bag every trip didn’t make it home. My favorite part was hiking down to the Red Apple Rest for a bowl of chili, it was the best!

    Boy Scout Troop 201, Brookly NY

  7. Would love to see any original photos of this BS camp..Have been in the area several times to metal detect for any artifacts. Also the history on Spruce Pond and the camp would be appreciated..How many years was it a BS camp and when was the pond formed IF manmade?
    Feel free to email me at bchurch265@earthlink.net
    Thanks for any help, Bill

  8. hi. i am speaking with my father about Spruce Pond. He was there in 1943-44 as part of BS troop 74 in Brooklyn. The Red Apple Rest was there at that time. They served hot soup. there were only lean-tos there, and he doesn’t remember any stoves.

  9. I believe the only time I was at Spruce Pond campsite, was back in the 70’s, after troops 373, and I believe 345 merged. Max Lefebvre was our scoutmaster. We went to sleep one night on dry ground, and woke to 1 1/2 ft of snow the next morning. Needless to say, we were tenting it. Made for an interesting outing.

  10. My troop 435 from Brooklyn went to Spruce Pond in the 1960s. I was either a junior asst. scoutmaster or asst. scoutmaster at the time. I remember the potbelly stoves glowing cherry red and buying coal from the campmaster cabin. Also pumping water. Tarps were hung from the front of the lean-tos to make a fourth wall. I remember being the last to leave camp once and burning the garbage that we collected in a carton. Finally when I burned the carton a gust of wind came and blew a large glowing piece of cardboard up and into the woods. I was lucky to be able to put out any fire before it started a big fire.. By the way, I just bought a book called “Stop at the Red Apple; the restaurant on Route 17” by Elaine Freed Lindenblatt, the daughter of Reuben Freed, the owner and builder of the Red Apple. I ate there many times during its waning years. It’s a fascinating book available from Amazon for $20. The Thruway and cheap fares to Europe and then cruises killed the Catskill hotels so the Rest became irrelevant, but it had a good run. My scoutmaster was George Selis who is now 91 and living in Ormond Beach, Florida. I still live in Brooklyn but George and I remain very close even though he’s been living in Florida for about 50 years. Our troop was in Brighton Beach, Brookyn. We met every Wednesday night at 7:30 and had a great troop, camped a lot and took the boys on some great trips. Those were great years.

  11. Great Memories of Spruce Pond. I was both a Scout and then a Scout Leader with Troop 269 during the 50s and 60s. We had a private leanto with a covered outdoor table and cooking area at the top of the pond. Thanksgiving weekend campout at Spruce Pond was an annual event for decades with the troop. Also held a couple of two weeks summer camps for our troop in the mid 60s. It was my favorite camp.

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