The Legacy of Robert S. Lyle Scout Reservation
The Final Visit
December 10, 2017
Who is ready to go reunion camping at Lyle? Well that might not be as far-fetched as you might think. As many of you know, the remaining portion of Camp Lyle is being sold to Langlade County (Some of it was sold to the State DNR, mostly the area north of the river that we did not use and the river shoreline) and will become public land. As part of the closing sale of the property this week, we went up to camp this week to make a final walk-thru of camp. We let the County know we were going to be up there, late the night before and they were very excited to meet up and called me first thing in the morning to meet us there to find out as much as they could about the property. They have been there about 30 times encouraging board members to vote on the purchase scoping things out for their plans for the camp. I personally was very happy with their vision for the camp. They plan to keep it group camping area, using many if not all of the sites we have established over the years. They plan on doing some upgrades to the admin building and upgrading outhouses, to better suit their needs. The process will be as money/grants allow, and hope to be open by the 2019 season but maybe in 2018 on a limited basis. They said that there is a high demand for the group camping sites and the site they manage six miles away, fills up within a couple hours after they open reservations. They believe this camp will also be a very active camp.
Its hard to walk around camp and not share memories with them about the camp and they said, our goals are to continue creating those memories. They asked several questions about the camp history. They wanted to buy a Lyle book and asked about it several times to gain that history. I gave them a free copy if they agreed to respect what this property means to us, and they assured me they would.
They will have boating and fishing available but will probably not be using the shooting sports ranges seeing they have several in the area. Once this land became available, they said they felt it was very important to keep in like it is and not to overdevelop it. They may at some point, add single site/RV camping, but that would not be for several years at best.
I was concerned that going up to camp for the final time would be a very hard thing to do, like saying goodbye to a good friend never to see them again, but I will tell you, the emotional challenge was made easier knowing that they share the same vision we have, that Camp Lyle is an awesome place and they seem to share that respect. It also helped to know that we have the option to go visit our beloved camp in the future. While selling the camp is truly an emotional thing for all of us as we hoped we could hold on to it forever, knowing that camp Lyle did not take the route that the other Boy Scout camp in Elcho took is also comforting. That camp was sold to a developer and is being developed and divided into 40 or 50 residential lots. While that could have happened to Camp Lyle too, I think we ended up with the better of the two options and should be thankful for that. As far as the Lyle name, that decision has not been made yet, but he said if they don’t keep the name for the entire camp, they would try to keep it somehow, even if it was to name the lodge building the Lyle Lodge.
This post is not to stir up the debate about the closing or sale of the camp, but to inform all so they have the facts about the camp’s future usage. While it could have been left to the rumor mill, I have posted this note to inform you so you have the facts. I share this as an advid fan of camp Lyle and not a member of any committee or position of the Three Harbors Council. Please respect that is the purpose of this post. As far as the funds from the sale of both camps, those have/will be put into the Master Camp Fund, which will go towards the improvements at both of our southern camps which is underway, matter fact this afternoon we are meeting to talk with someone about a new maintenance building at Camp OhDaKoTa which will be funded from this Master Camp Fund.
Thank you for your love of Camp Lyle and I hope this message gives you a little comfort knowing that our camp will be put to good use in the future with the respect of nature we all gained while we spent our time at camp. We truly have been blessed to experience a great piece of property, where we gained some great friendships and had some awesome memories that should last a lifetime. While we don’t get to manage the destiny of the camp now, knowing that others even outside of the scouting movement will have a chance to experience the “LYLE PROPERTY” experience, the full package of great staffs and a great property can never be matched, thanks to all that were part of the overall package we call the LYLE EXPERIENCE.
Thanks -Tim Falendysz
PS Seems like a good time to remind every one of www.camplylelegacy.com , If you have not gotten your Lyle book, now may be the time to pick one up. It is great to reflect on the happy times at Camp Lyle.