Sierra Expedition
  Big Bear Expedition - YMCA Adventure Guides

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Information for Navigators and Officers

This page is intended to provide helpful information primarily for the Navigators of the individual circles. For additional information about the program as a whole, please review our simple summary and this YMCA document.

Expedition Officers

Describes the responsibilities of the various expedition officer positions, and contains the officer's meeting schedule. Anyone interested in serving in one of the expedition officer positions should contact the current Expedition Navigator.

Monthly Circle Meetings

Every circle holds monthly meetings for the guides and sons (explorers). The general objectives of these meetings are to provide an opportunity for the dads and sons to do some positive activity together. They also can provide an opportunity for the boys to learn, and to have an opportunity to speak to a group in a supportive setting. There is no set format for these meetings, and various circles have different traditions. The pages for the individual circles give additional information about the practices of each group.

Campout Ceremonies

There are two major overnight events - the Fall Campout (cabin camping at a YMCA facility) and the Spring Roughout (tent camping at a regular campground). The featured events at these campouts are ceremonies where new members are inducted (in the Fall) and old members graduate out (in the Spring).

Hosting an Expedition Event

Each circle is responsible for hosting one of the expedition events during the year. These pages provide information about previous events that have been held or considered. They are intended to be useful both by providing ideas for events to hold, and also practical information about the mechanics of the events to help in planning and execution.


Patches are awarded for membership in the YAG program and for attendance at expedition events. Here is some information describing the standard patches awarded for participation in the program.

Circle Navigator's Symbolic Stuff

The circle navigators have three special symbols of their leadership - a walking stick, a bandana, and a hat.  When a new navigator takes over a circle, he inherits the walking stick and the bandana.  The old navigator keeps his own sweaty hat - the new navigator gets a new hat.