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Washington State University Extension

Challenge/Ropes Courses

Portable Ropes Course

ropes 3A Portable Ropes course is designed for groups and teams to access the benefits of a ropes course experience in any classroom space or setting accessible to them.  This is currently the type of WSU 4-H Programming being used at many Seattle Parks and Recreation sites.



Low Ropes Course

ropesA Low Ropes Course is designed for groups and teams to build communication, trust, and social/emotional learning skills. Low course days range from 1-6 hours long.  A day typicallystarts with introductions, name games, a health check, stretches, icebreakers, and energizers to prepare groups and teams to engage in Challenge Initiatives to help them reach their individual and groups goals.  All Challenge Initiatives on a Low Ropes Course occur either at ground level of less than 10 feet of the ground.  Each element takes approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour to complete.


High Ropes Course

ropes 2A High Ropes Courses is designed for individuals to learn to use skills such as coaching and encouragement to reach their goals.  The act of overcoming fear and challenges can be peak experience that groups and participants will draw upon for a lifetime.  Participants learn that success is not measured by how high a person climbs, but rather through experiences gained from working closely with teammates, building trust among groups, and pushing oneself in a way that is safe and responsible.


Stand Alone High Course Elements

Stand Alone High Course Elements are designed to create a peak experience after an initial low course day.  They each take approximately 1 hour to complete. They are usually constructed in the trees and require a belay system for safety.

Click here for “Low Course Facilitator Pocket Guide”