Adult Leader Outdoor Training Courses (BALOO/IOLS)

BALOO stands for Basic Adult Leader Outdoor Orientation. It’s the introductory training Cub Scout leaders must complete before taking Cub Scouts on an overnight camping trip. This one-and-a-half day course is designed as an introduction to the Cub Scout outdoor program for leaders interested in adding a camping component to their Pack activities. Completion of this course is mandatory for a MINIMUM OF ONE adult on a Pack overnighter.

IOLS stands for Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills a training course that provides leaders with basic skills and information to run a successful outdoor Scouting program.

Who should take BALOO?

The BSA requires that you have at least one BALOO-trained adult on every Cub Scout den or pack overnight outdoor event.

Who should take IOLS?

The BSA requires that you have at least one IOLS-trained adult on every Scouts BSA overnight outdoor event.

Why should I take BALOO or IOLS?

You’ll learn how to make camping activities and outings fun. You’ll discover how to keep your Scouts safe and entertained. And you’ll learn how to plan an event that’s rooted firmly in Scouting’s principles. You’ll learn the basic outdoor skills to develop confidence and competence in your Unit’s leaders conducting outdoor camping activities. 

How do I take these training courses?

BALOO consists of two components: You’ll need to complete both the "online" and "practical hands-on" components to qualify as a “Trained” Cub Scout outdoor leader and receive the BALOO recognition patch.

  • Online component: (MUST DO FIRST)
    • The online portion of BALOO is available 24/7 on the BSA Learn Center. Just log in to to begin.
  • Practical, hands-on component:
    • This 1.5-day course is designed as an introduction to the Cub Scout outdoor program for leaders. A Round Robin of topics will include: GPS, Cooking, Aquatics, Sanitation, Gear Selection, First Aid, Nature, Knife Safety, Hiking, Fire Safety, Outdoor Ethics, Basic Knots,  and Stoves & Lanterns

IOLS is a practical, hands-on 1.5-day course is conducted as a Unit outdoor overnight camping experience using the Patrol Method. The program provides adult leaders the practical outdoor skills they need to lead Scouts in the out-of-doors. Upon completion, leaders should feel comfortable teaching Scouts the basic skills required to obtain the First Class rank. Along with Scoutmaster Specifics, this course is required of all direct contact leaders registered in Boy Scout Troops in order to be considered “trained”.

  • A Round Robin of topics will include: Campsite Selection, Fire Building, Cooking, Outdoor Ethics, Rope Work, Map & Compass, Wood Tools, Plant Identification, Animal ID, Packing & Hiking


These training programs are an outdoor overnight camping activity. Participants need to bring their own tent and camping equipment. Family members and persons from the same Unit may be assigned to different Patrols and may preclude the sharing of camping gear.

Registration will open on February 1, 2023 for the Spring courses and August 1, 2023 for the Fall courses. 

  • IOLS (Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills)
    April 21, 2023 to April 23

  • BALOO (Basic Adult Leader Outdoor Orientation)
    April 22, 2023 to April 23

  • IOLS (Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills)
    October 27, 2023 to October 29

  • BALOO (Basic Adult Leader Outdoor Orientation)
    October 28, 2023 to October 29