Minnesota Boy Scout finishes quest to sleep outside for a year

Um, perfect sleeping weather?

Well, he actually did it.

Defying hot, humid summers and below-zero winters, Rudy Hummel, a 17-year-old Life Scout from Minnesota, finished his quest to sleep outside every night for a year.

I first told you about Rudy when he was 200 nights into his 365-night quest.

Now, I’m not surprised a Boy Scout set a goal and accomplished it. It’s just that doing so meant muggy summer conditions and a chillingly high 76 nights of subzero temps in the winter. He built a quinzee, or snow cave, to survive those frigid nights and really bundled up.

This Weather Channel story reveals just how many layers it took to keep Rudy warm: “Hummel slept under a fleece liner inside a mummy bag inside two other sleeping bags, with two or three quilts over that. He’d wear up to three layers of pants and up to seven shirts.”

Seven shirts? Now that’s toasty.

When his family went on vacation, the streak didn’t end. He just set up a portable camp, snoozing in his sleeping bag in grassy patches next to motel parking lots or zipping into his tent pitched on a hotel balcony.

For his efforts Rudy even ended up “A Prairie Home Companion,” the popular public-radio program. Read about that experience here.

After Rudy reached his goal, his parents made him a cake to celebrate. Rudy even wrote a fun blog post about his last night outside — and his first night in his warm, comfy bed inside.

Nice job, Rudy, for proving once again that when it comes to accomplishing goals, Boy Scouts (and Venturers) do it better than anyone else.

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Bryan on Scouting

Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is the senior editor of Scouting and Eagles' Call magazines. You can read more of his posts at