Pig Camp

The squeal of a baby pig woke me. The noise sounded like it came from Jim and Robert’s tent.

I looked out the tent flap and saw a flashlight go on inside their tent. After a few minutes of shouting and squealing, the camp returned to early morning silence.

“What happened?”

“A pig got inside our tent,” Robert replied.

“I thought you had forted up?” By the third night of Boy Scout camp, we had learned to weight the edges of our tents with footlockers and duffle bags.

“It was a little one and he found a loose corner,” Jimmy said.

To call Camp Glover (later Camp Dierks) primitive or rustic would fail to convey the robust nature in 1960 of the site along a bend of the Glover River in Southeast Oklahoma.

Scouts stayed in tents they had to bring and erect themselves. There was no swimming pool, but a beautiful flowing river where we swam, canoed and tried to row a flat-bottomed boat.

And there were pigs.

Wild feral hogs had the run of the place at night. They would tip over trash cans and get into anything they could find.

Boys, being boys, found ways to utilize the pigs for pranks.

One night, water melon rinds were planted under a kid’s cot. Pigs rooted up the rinds. The Scout awoke the next morning claiming he didn’t hear a thing, despite being tumbled out of his cot.

In later years, a chain link fence surrounded the property and the pig population declined. For those of us on that 1960 camp, something else abated as well.

We continued to use Camp Glover through our Scouting years. We would return each summer for the troop camp and later for the 50-mile hike from Glover to Camp Pioneer at Mena, AR called the Kiamichi Trail.

We also enjoyed Aquatics Camp. We had a full week of water activities. I still remember the mile-swim. Laps in the swimming area meant half of the mile was swum into the river’s current.

I returned to the camp a few years ago for a Dad N Lad Cub Scout weekend. Little had changed, except, of course, distances between camp sites seemed shorter and facilities smaller.

I learned recently BSA sold the camp to a real estate developer. I suppose eventually there will be a golf course and water-front condos. I am sure the people who visit or live there will enjoy it.

I don’t think, however, they will have to fight the pigs or have nearly as much fun as we did.


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