WATCHUNG RESERVATION, NJ -- The lack of snow at this year's Klondike Derby did not dampen the enthusiasm of Boy Scouts from Troop 104 in Scotch Plains and Troop 33 in Fanwood and others at the Watchung Reservation on Saturday, Jan. 28.

This year, a team of Venture Scouts from Fanwood made history as the first ever co-ed participants in the competition.

The Klondike Derby is one of the highlights of the Scouting year. Patrols of four to eight Scouts pull their sleds over a course where they earn points by solving problems using Scouting skills. Challenges include first aid, fire-building, knot-tying and lashing, orienteering, wilderness survival, and team work.

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Scout Troops from the Watchung Mountain District (Berkeley Heights, Fanwood, Garwood, Mountainside, Murray Hill, New Providence, Scotch Plains, Summit, Watchung, and Westfield) participated.

The Klondike Derby, held annually by the Boy Scouts of America since 1949, is based on the heritage of the Klondike Gold Rush. is Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s only free daily paper. Sign up for our daily eNews and follow us on Facebook and twitter @SPF_TAP.