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Scouting’s Manual of
Basic and Advanced Skills
for Outdoor Adventure

First edition:1944
Latest edition:2014, 435 pages
BSA Supply Number:34006


For more than a hundred years, Scouting has introduced young people to adventure and taught them the craft of outdoor living and travel. Using skills and leadership learned while camping and hiking close to home, Scouts have gone on to climb our planet's highest peaks, explore its deepest oceans, survive in its most extreme environments, and cross the heavens to walk on the moon.

The skills and commitment to enjoy the outdoors responsibly aren't just for Scouts—they are for everyone who seeks to explore, to experience adventure, and to appreciate the natural world. That's also true of this manual. It's book of basic knowledge for safe and comfortable backcountry activities and a guide to more advanced skills for exhilarating high adventures.

Fieldbook represents the collective knowledge and experience of countless outdoor experts, mountaineers, explorers, researchers, and Scouters. We hope that you find it to be a valuable resource for your own outdoor journeys and a trusted companion along the way.

— from the Foreword of Fieldbook, 2014

Table of Contents

5th Edition Table of Contents

1 Organizing for Adventure
1 Planning
2 Gearing Up
3 Menus and Meals
4 Leadership
2 Backcountry Basics
5 Camping
6 Stoves and Campfires
7 Backcountry Hygiene
8 Navigation
3 Environmenal Protection
9 Leave No Trace
10 Stewardship
4 Safety and Survival
11 Emergency Preparedness
12 Hazards
13 First Aid
14 Survival
5 Outdoor Adventuring
15 Backpacking
16 Mountain Travel
17 Hot-Weather Adventuring
18 Cold-Weather Adventuring
19 Ski Touring and Snowshoeing
20 Canoeing
21 Kayaking and Rafting
22 Caving
6 Our Natural World
23 Observing Nature
24 Examining the Earth
25 Weather
26 The Night Sky
27 Plants
28 Wildlife
Scouting and the Outdoors

4th Edition Table of Contents

Leadership and Trek Preparation
1 - Organizing for Adventures
2 - Outdoor Leadership
3 - Becoming Fit
4 - Planning a Trek
5 Outdoor Menus
6 - Managing Risk
Leave No Trace
7 - Implementing Leave No Trace
8 - Using Stoves and Campfires
9 - Hygiene and Waste Disposal
10 - Traveling and Camping in Special Environments
Trek Adventures
11 - Gearing Up
12 - Navigation
13 - Cold-Weather Travel and Camping
14 - Hot-Weather Travel and Camping
15 - Backpacking
16 - Watercraft Adventure Safety
17 - Canoeing
18 - Kayaking and Rafting
19 - Sailing
20 - Bicycle Touring and Mountain Biking
21 - Riding and Packing
22 - Ski Touring and Snowshoeing
23 - Mountain Travel
24 - Caving
25 - Fishing
26 - Search and Rescue
Appreciating our Environment
27 - Understanding Nature
28 - Observing Nature
29 - Examining the Earth
30 - Monitoring Weather
31 - Plants
32 - Wildlife
33 - Watching the Night Sky
34 - Being Good Stewards of Our Resources


  • First Edition, Scout Field Book,
    1944–1967, 14 printings, 540 pages (1st-10th printings) & 552 pages (11th-14th printings);
    Focused on advanced outdoor skills and nature appreciation.
  • Second Edition, Fieldbook,
    1967–1984, 14 printings, 565 pages;
    Added backpacking.
  • Second Edition (commercial edition), Boy Scout Fieldbook,
    Subtitle: A practical guide for everyone to life in the outdoors,
    1978, 565 pages;
    Included a 16-page color insert of Norman Rockwell Scouting paintings.
  • Third Edition, Fieldbook,
    1984–2004, 630 pages;
    Full-color photos and line drawings; Major emphasis on low-impact camping; Expanded to include mountaineering, snow camping, whitewater rafting and kayaking, wilderness survival, and many other outdoor activities.
  • Fourth Edition, Fieldbook,
    Subtitle: The BSA's manual of advanced skills for outdoor travel, adventure, and caring for the land,
    2004-2013, No. 33104, 614 pages
  • Fifth Edition, Fieldbook,
    Subtitle: Scouting’s Manual of Basic and Advanced Skills for Outdoor Adventure,
    2014– , No. 34006, 435 pages

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