Friend Trunk

Friend Trunks, or Howdy Friend Trunks, or simply camp trunks are a series of 3/4“ plywood camping trunks used for storage at Camp Fitch. They are incredibly overbuilt, designed to withstand the rigors of camp life for decades. Howdy Friend Sr. built the first trunk in 1963 for his son Howdy to bring to camp. He was tired of the damage camp life did to trunks of other designs. Between the rain, weather, dirt, and children jumping on them from the top bunk; they had a short life span. Always the problem solver, Howdy decided to build a trunk that was camp proof. After the successful trial run Howdy Jr. had at camp that summer, Howdy Sr. decided to build one for is other son, Scott. Others soon saw beauty in the simple utility of the design. Always generous, especially in regards to Camp Fitch, he was soon building more trunks for camp, both as a gift and by request. Before long the trunks began finding their way into annual Family Camp Auctions as well, fetching hundreds of dollars. Many times they raised so much money, Howdy felt obliged to give the winning bidder a second trunk. After 50 years of construction, 360 trunks have been completed to date. The trunks have become as ubiquitous as Cabents to the Camp Fitch landscape.

Dimensions and Design

The trunks have come in different sizes and a few specialty trunks have been made. The standard trunk is 12 and 3/4” high, 33“ wide, and 20” deep. They are hand cut and stained with rope handles on each end. There durability and utility leads them to be incredibly heavy when full. On Sunday, a counselor rarely feels more masculine than when he successfully carries a trunk down the entire Apache Point Trail with out stopping to rest.

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