Trail-Ready Learner Conference
A Trail-Ready Learner Conference is an impactful weekend of fellowship and hands-on training. It is an opportunity to connect with Regional, Area, and Troop leaders, ask questions, discover practical answers, and develop tools to build a thriving Troop ministry.
This weekend conference is a tremendous opportunity for anyone interested in the Trail Life ministry. Whether it is your first experience with Trail Life or you are a seasoned leader with years of experience, you will walk away with new friendships, new tools, and a renewed passion to use outdoor adventure as a tool to build a generation of godly, courageous young men who lead with integrity, serve others and become godly, and responsible husbands, fathers, and citizens.
This was an incredible opportunity to build a support network beyond my home Troop.
Well, YOU definitely should! These events are for every parent Troop leader, and Area leader. Three or more members from each Troop should attend to experience the separate Learner Tracks—no single attendee can get all of the info offered.
There are 7 TRLCs scheduled for 2021—GA in March; KS in April; NC in May; OH in August; TX in October; and NY and WA with dates TBD.
Yes. Friday evening will provide insights into the mission and vision of Trail Life—the heart of the ministry. Saturday will add practical help and various topics of interest in breakout workshops. Attendees can ask questions of their Area, Regional, or National representatives.
Some TRLC locations will host special activities for Navigators and Adventurers. Dads and sons will learn at the same location, but in different tracks. Please check your TRLC location for details on whether youth activities will be offered.
Content changes year-to-year, and there are always new resources being rolled out. The inspirational speeches and stage presentations are similar from location to location, but each site has its own unique flavor—offering different workshops, instructors, and special gatherings held during the event.
What Other Training Does Trail Life Offer?
Three Peaks is a three-part series of basic training courses for adult members. It was developed by the volunteer-led National Training Committee, and sanctioned/accepted as a TLUSA National Initiative Training program. Three Peaks (“3P”) has replaced Equip Training. It covers “whole Troop” issues, and is not position-specific.
Peak 1 provides a general overview of Trail Life and the basic operations of local Troop ministries. It covers the “essences” of Trail Life—the aligned mission, vision, Core Values—and what members of Trail Life can expect to experience in this youth adventure ministry. It is designed to help Troops develop a fundamental understanding of how Trail Life works, even before a Troop launches. It can also serve as a refresher course for even the most seasoned leaders of existing Troops. Peak 1 is a two-to-three hour course that can be effectively presented in person, online as a group, and to solo viewers at home. Please visit Trail Life University on Trail Life Connect for more information.
Peak 2 gets into specifics of Troop management. Peak 2 is intended to be delivered to Troop leadership a couple of months after they get started, but is effective no matter how long the Troop has been operating. Peak 2 is designed to answer the many questions that surface during a Troop’s early (or later) stages. Topics include: running an effective Troop meeting, improving Troop Committee operations, and developing youth leaders by using the Patrol method. Peak 2 takes about eight hours, and is best done in person. For those who do not have an in-person Peak 2 course offered nearby, there are online modules available—that break it up into multiple sessions—and include “best practices” videos. Please visit Trail Life University on Trail Life Connect for more information.
Peak 3 is a two-night training campout that focuses on outdoor skills, and is designed to prepare leaders to conduct a Troop’s outdoor program. This in person-only outdoor weekend gives adult leaders a guided, hands-on camping experience. Participants will learn by doing the following: living the patrol method, camp planning and preparation, campsite selection, camping tools, rope work, cooking, orienteering, ceremonies, campfire planning, incorporating spiritual development into campouts, and much more. Peak 3 training is presented using the latest TLUSA publications. Uniform standards are upheld, as are limitations of electronic devices. Staff members emulate Troop adults and youth leadership teams, and participants become the youth Trailmen!
All registered adult members of Trail Life USA, including all leaders of every position, should attend all Three Peaks! There is a system of adult training record management and certification within Trail Life Connect. All National Initiative Training (Train-the-Trainer, Three Peaks, Troop Youth Leadership Training, etc.) is tracked, and updated on the printable membership cards, with certifications such as TTT indicated on the front.
Released in 2014, Equip was Trail Life’s only in-person Training course for Troop leaders; it continued until recently with very few changes. In 2018, the National Training Committee determined that it was time for an overhaul, so Three Peaks Training was developed to replace Equip, starting in 2019. Three Peaks is the only nationally-approved initiative for basic adult leader training.
Treks, which will include focused training—such as Troop Chaplaincy, effective Troop committees, advanced backpacking, Officer’s Conferences—will be developed. Only training that meets the overall criteria and goals of Trail Life USA will be rolled out as “National Initiative Training.” Additional local, Area, and Regional training may be developed and implemented at any time.
Regions conduct Train the Trainer (TTT) courses that prepare and certify trainers to deliver National Initiative Training for Areas, Regions, and Troops. In many parts of the country, local in-person courses are already happening. In other places, it will take longer to get these processes in place. Check with your Area Team (your Troop’s assigned DSA, your Area’s Training Committee chairman, or your Point Man) for specifics. Three Peaks and TTT course materials are available to certified trainers.
Whenever possible, all Three Peaks training should take place in connected fellowship with peers from your Troop and other Troops in your Area. Hands-on activities and informal discussion among instructors and trainees enhance the training experience. However, Peak 1 can be presented in-person, and simultaneously broadcast live to groups and/or to individuals. Peak 2 is best presented in person (until videos and other media can be incorporated into the available online materials). Peak 3 is always conducted in person, and must include two nights of camping.
Additional online training (such as position-specific learner tracks) will be part of the new Learning Management System (LMS), to be released in 2020. Additionally, connecting with your Area support team and other Troops will keep you in the know—find nearby Troops and your Point Man by clicking on Troop Locator map at www.TrailLifeUSA.com.
More about “Train the Trainer” and “Trail-Ready Leaders Conference”:
TTT is the National Initiative Training (“NIT”) course that prepares and certifies adult leaders to present other TLUSA courses. TTT focuses on developing effective presentation and teaching skills, classroom management, pedagogical skills, and is the certification required to teach NIT courses. Some exceptions may be extended to those who have extensive experience as trainers in previous TLUSA training; however, all must eventually attend a TTT. Area Point Men should review applicants for suitability as a trainer, when possible, prior to acceptance into a scheduled TTT course. Area-level trainers are approved to attend TTT by their Area’s Point Man.
Yes, another acronym! TRLC stands for “Trail-Ready Learner Conference,” an inspirational Friday evening and Saturday event that features messages from Trail Life CEO Mark Hancock, and emceed by National Director of Field Operations Rob Green. They, along with Regional and Area leaders, connect Troop leaders with Trail Life’s vision and mission, and help to incorporate these to thrive in their own local mission field. TRLC events feature up-to-date and relevant information, the latest resources and program releases, and offer three separate tracks of “best practice” workshops—which are hosted by experienced Troop leaders. Enjoy fellowship, have meals together, connect with nearby Troop leaders, and establish (or enlarge) your support network. It’s more like a “mini convention” experience than a training session.