NEW: Pathfinder Handbook Pre-Release

PLEASE NOTE: Since the publication of this post, the Pathfinder Handbook has been published. You can learn more about it here in the announcement on the OSG website.

The new Pathfinder Badges are READY! The Pathfinder Handbook Committee is still hard at work completing the final version of the updated handbook. However, they have 3 chapters ready to share!  These chapters represent an entirely revised program for special proficiency badges and advanced awards.

More Badges

This pre-release version of the new Pathfinder Handbook Pre-Release includes all 101  NEW amazing badges and updated versions of older badges. Every badge has been renamed to be inclusive. This means that every time it said “man” at the end of the badge name, like Handyman or Healthy Man, those badges all have new names!  The requirements have also been updated to improve the program for our pathfinders and leaders. This includes a modernized and updated First Aid badge to reflect modern best practices.

Every badge has been redesigned to still have our classic style but they now include a ring of color that lets you know what category the badge is in. Some of the 101 badges are regular proficiency badges designed for all Pathfinders who have earned Tenderfoot and some are Senior level Proficiency badges. Senior level badges can be earned by scouts over age 14  who have earned Second Class and those who are younger than 14 who have earned First Class.



Green indicates badges that focus on the Outdoors.

Blue is for badges that are Life Skills.

Red badges focus on Civic and Community Service.

Tan badges are for badges in Arts and Crafts.

There are also special interest pins to for pathfinders who work to earn badges in a specific area of interest. For example, of you earn all 3 fishing badges, you can wear the fishing pin!


During this update, the redesign of several badges took place, include the Tenderfoot, First Class and Second Class badges. The Second Class badge is now an oval with a gold fleur-de-lis on it and it says “Be Prepared” on a ribbon at the bottom. The new First Class badge is a ring of laurel leaves worn around the Second Class badge.

The requirements for First Class have had some minor updates.The program also introduces three other, parallel, Pillar Awards for pathfinders to earn. Each Pillar represents an area of badge work, and earning a Pillar requires a significant investment of time and effort by the pathfinder. Aside from First Class, each Pillar requires that scouts earn about 10 special proficiency badges with some of them specified in the requirements, and to give a presentation to their group.

Polaris Award

OSG has created a new pinnacle award called the Polaris Award. The Polaris Award is  earned by pathfinders who earn 3 Pillar awards!  The Polaris Award is the name of the North Star.  We hope our Polaris winners become shining stars of their communities. They will have learned the guiding principles of OSG and be ready to be leaders in their communities. We believe this award will be one worth bragging about!

Medals and More

This new section of the handbook also includes adding a few medals for special situations. These awards are given at the discretion of the Scout Leader or GSM, and they are all updated versions of awards from the history of scouting.  Leaders should make themselves aware of these awards and the requirements for awarding them.

You can download these new chapters with a letter written to the Pathfinders HERE.  If you have questions or concerns about the pathfinder handbook you can email the committee at and let them know what you think.

While the fully updated book is in process, please keep your older Pathfinder manuals handy! Use them as references and to check on Second Class and Tenderfoot requirements.

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