Pathfinder (11-17 years old)

Pathfinders is our program for ages 11-17. Pathfinders grow from scouts who are learning to ones who are doing tasks independently to leading and teaching other scouts.

Pathfinders work in patrols, which results in small group work where they develop teamwork and develop their scouting skills. Patrols are an important part of the small-group learning that happens in scouting. Each patrol has its own name, colors, and call. These elements are decided on by the scouts so that they have a group identity. These patrols are used to create teams for games, and they provide structure for camp chores. Patrols work together to cook and clean while in camp.

The Pathfinder program is designed to help young people learn skills that will lead to being independent, self-sufficient adults. The program requires scouts to first earn the Tenderfoot badge that focuses on general scouting skills and knowledge. The program includes advancements and special proficiency badges the scouts work on after earning Tenderfoot. The program provides room for the Pathfinders to explore their individual interests and self-sufficiency, while also doing things as part of a patrol.

The Pathfinder motto is “Be Prepared” and their program works hard to teaching them many ways to be prepared for both scouting adventures and real life. Pathfinders learn to follow the Scout Law as a set of guiding principles.

The Scout Law

  • A scout’s honor is to be trusted.
  • A scout is loyal.
  • A scout’s duty is to be useful and help others.
  • A scout is a friend to all and a sibling to every other scout, no matter to what class, country, or creed the other may belong.
  • A scout is courteous.
  • A scout is kind to animals.
  • A scout obeys orders.
  • A scout smiles and whistles under all difficulties.
  • A scout is thrifty.
  • A scout is clean in thought, word, and deed.


You can purchase the newly released 4th Edition of the Pathfinder Handbook from the Quarter Master Store or you can download it here.

There are additional leader resources available on the Guides4Guides Pathfinder Resource page.

While many pathfinders are happy to participate only in their home groups, there are multi-troop events planned across the country. Contact your Regional Commissioner to learn more about opportunities for Pathfinders.