The Philmont Training Center has tons of free time activities available for all members of your family! During the day you will be busy learning the fantastic information offered during your particular course or doing program activities with your assigned family program group. However in the evenings, and on Wednesday (Family Day) you will have time to get out and experience some of the additional activities Philmont has to offer.
The Philmont Craft Center offers instruction and sell materials for ceramics, wearable art (clothing and accessories decoration), leather craft, stamp art, Southwestern crafts, and home décor.
Every evening there are fun activities for you and your family. The PTC hosts: Western Night, Evening Craft Center opportunities, Cobbler Night, and Ice Cream Night, not to mention Opening and Closing Campfire each week. There is also the nightly opening campfire at Camping headquarters, which tells some of the history of Cimarron, New Mexico.
Don’t forget your Western clothes and hat for Tuesday night’s Buffalo Barbecue and Western Night games and dance.
All fisherman must have a New Mexico fishing license, available for purchase at Philmont or Cimarron, and a Philmont fishing permit from the PTC Registration Office. The lower Rayado River, the Cimarron River, the Philmont reservoir, and Webster Lake are recommended area. Bring your own tackle.
There are several approved day hikes you can take during free time. All are fairly easy and give you a small taste of the backcountry. PTC Families are able to hike the Urraca nature Trail, the Lovers Leap Hike, or T-Rex Track trail. Information for these hikes are available in the Program Office. The spouse and children groups may take other trails during the week with their Philmont guides.
Hikers should bring water bottles, rain gear, a day pack, and a warm jacket or sweater. Sunglasses, sunscreen lotion, a hat, and a first aid kit are also recommended. Only those in good physical condition should attempt to hike Philmont’s trails. Be sure to come by the Program Office for a PTC Hiker’s Guide.
For health and safety reasons and in an effort to keep the trails clear and special for the Scouts hiking on the treks, Philmont does not allow hikes in most backcountry areas, including the Tooth of Time. Please observe this policy during your stay at PTC so the backcountry remains open to PTC participants.
Philmont is home to a widely diverse group of animals. Deer can be seen almost every evening in the Villa lawn and Elk, Antelope, and the occasional Black Bear may make an appearance. Take advantage of the nature guides available at the Training Center office!
Philmont benefactor Waite Phillips’ summer home, the Villa Philmonte, is open each day for tours. Children must be accompanied by parents or program counselors. Most family program groups schedule a Villa tour, and special tours are available for conference members.
The Philmont Museum exhibits focus on the events of Philmont’s colorful past. The Seton Library houses the personal library, collections, and artwork of Ernest Thompson Seton, famous naturalist, author, artist, and first Chief Scout of the Boy Scouts of America. The museum/library, which also features a gift shop, is open each day with group tours scheduled by the program staff.
The Kit Carson Museum at Rayado in Philmont’s southeast corner (seven miles south of the Training Center) is a living history museum that houses exhibits and artifacts pertaining to life on the Santa Fe Trail and the lives of mountain men Kit Carson and Lucien Maxwell. The museum staff is on hand each day to show groups or families through the display areas and blacksmith shop.
The Chase Ranch, founded in 1869, was successfully owned and operated by the Chase family for over 143 years. The historic adobe ranch house offers a glimpse of ranch life starting around the time of the Colfax County land grant war, through the territorial and statehood periods into modern times. This ranch and the Chase family were instrumental in transforming western ranching into what it is today! During the summer months, staff offers guided tours of the main house, grounds, orchards, and tack room. Site includes restrooms, picnic amenities, and a gift shop.
Tour and Trips
If you don’t want to hike on your days off, or if you want to see more of the Ranch and Cimarron, you can pick up a flyer in the PTC office and take a self-guide tour of Cimarron. Cimarron is a quaint community, rich in historical interest. You could spend many hours browsing through the shops and museums. LEARN MORE
The historic Southwest has many points of interest and print information is available in the Training Center Office.