Swing Through Fall Foliage at These Five Outdoor Ropes Courses

[Note:  This post was written by KFDC Contributor Emily Moise, a local writer and mom of three young children.  She always has excellent recommendations for kids’ activities around the DC area. See some of them hereherehere, here, here.]

Veer off the beaten fall festival path this year with a visit to one of our area’s outdoor ropes courses. As mentioned in this KFDC post, autumn is a great time to enjoy the activity, when you can  take in views of the foliage, and at some places even immerse right in it. Once known primarily for “team building,” ropes courses have become a family-friendly activity, where daredevils young and old can challenge their strength, balance, bravery and problem-solving.  If you have a child old enough for the adventure — and if you want to get in on the fun, too — here are some options to explore. Catch them while the foliage is hot!


The Adventure Park at Sandy Spring
The largest forest-based adventure park in town, featuring 15 separate trails of varying levels of difficulty. [This is a KFDC favorite!  See this post for a detailed experience.]

Location: 16701 Norwood Rd | Sandy Spring, MD
Fall Hours: Friday 3-10pm | Saturday 9am – 10pm | Sunday 9am – 7pm
Ages: 5 & up; each child 5-6 must be accompanied by an adult age 18+
Pricing: $23-73
Deals: Last Call Tickets
Gloves: Available for purchase
Events: Glow In The Park
Additional Features: Food Truck, Axe Throwing
Learn more and reserve tickets

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Tree Trekkers
Open since 2019, this newer course is located on 30 acres of protected forest and features over 250 obstacles and ziplines.

Location: 9560 Old National Pike | Frederick, MD
Fall Hours: Thursday-Sunday; check calendar for up-to-date hours
Ages: 4 & up; each child 4-7 must be accompanied by an adult age 18+
Pricing: $35-64
Deals: Thrifty Thursdays, After Work Adventure Ticket, Twilight Ticket, Movie Star Ticket
Gloves: Provided
Events: Trek or Treat October 20-21 & 27-28
Learn more and reserve tickets

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Go Ape Zipline & Adventure Park
A treetop adventure chain, featuring 50-foot high tree-to-tree crossings, ziplines, and Tarzan swings.

Location: Derwood, MD & Springfield, VA
Fall Hours: Friday-Sunday; check website for up-to-date hours
Ages: All ages – minimum height 3’3”; children 5 & under must be accompanied by an adult age 18+ (one adult per 2 kids); children 6-15 must be supervised by an adult
Pricing: $40-65
Deals: Frequent Flyer Pass
Gloves: Available for purchase
Events: Nights at Height, Frights at Height, Haunted Trails
Additional Features:  Forest EscAPE, STEM Program, Axe Throwing
Learn more and reserve tickets

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Terrapin Adventures
This course offers a variety of aerial thrills and challenges, inspired by vacation-type adventures from around the world.

Location: 8600 Foundry Street, Savage MD
Fall Hours: 10am – 5pm; check booking page for up-to-date hours
Ages: Kids Pass: 5 & up; all participants required to climb over a three-foot-tall railing unaided; Adventure Park Experience: 8+ and 4 feet tall
Pricing: $19-79
Gloves: Not provided (purchase some like this in advance)
Events: Parent’s Night Out
Additional Features: Climbing Tower, Giant Swing, Archery
Learn more and reserve tickets

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Climb UPton
A 90-element adventure located in Upton Hill Regional Park where climbers can choose their challenge with easy, medium and hard features.

Location:  6060 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA
Fall Hours: Wednesday-Thursday 4-8pm, Friday 4-9pm, Saturday-Sunday 10am – 9pm
Ages: 5 and up; children 5-7 must be 48” and accompanied by an adult age 18+; children 8-15 must be 51” to go without an adult
Pricing: $20-50
Deals: Student Night, Date Night, Groups of 6+
Gloves: Not provided (purchase some like this in advance)
Events: Pumpkin Scavenger Hunt, Turkey Scavenger Hunt
Additional Features: Upton Hill Regional Park also offers Mini Golf, Batting Cages, Playground, Water Park (seasonal)
Learn more and reserve tickets


Do you know of other outdoor ropes courses in the area? Tell us in the comments!

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