Eagle's Eyrie Challenge Course: Providing Team Building and Personal Growth Opportunities
The Catlin Gabel challenge course is located in the serene woods around the athletic field and running track on the northwest portion of the campus.
Constructed from wood, cable, and rope, and strung between trees and platforms either just above the ground or high in the air, Catlin Gabel’s challenge course consists of four high elements and eight low elements. These “elements” or individual structures combine vertical climbing challenges and horizontal obstacle or initiative challenges.
The combination of low and high elements on the Catlin Gabel challenge course enable participants to grow at team and individual levels, exploring risk, leadership, communication, problem-solving, and coaching. The challenge course is a great tool for hands on learning in a beautiful natural setting and it’s a new expression of the school’s commitment to experiential education.
As a team is made up of individuals with complementary skills, it is important to maximize the opportunities for each individual to contribute toward the team goals. The various challenge course elements allow participants to explore different levels of personal exposure, provide opportunities to learn about cooperation, open lines of communication, and develop problem solving skills, leadership, coaching and self esteem.
The course was designed and built according to national guidelines and standards, and construction of the course was completed in 2010 by a Professional Vendor Member of the Association of Challenge Course Technology. A group of Catlin Gabel faculty and staff members have been trained in the operation and safety of the individual elements, and all activities on the challenge course are supervised by a certified facilitator.
Like many outdoor adventures, the challenge course pushes participants out of their comfort zone and into areas of learning and growth. Participants push their own perceived limits, and discover how they perform under pressure. Teams learn how to constructively give and receive support, and individuals see how collaborative work with others can help a team achieve more than they had previously thought they could accomplish.
The low elements focus on collaborative problem solving. These challenges require group focus and the participants must work together to accomplish the challenge at hand, while providing safety systems for one another. The challenges call upon each member of the team to participate, and present unending opportunities for self-discovery and team growth.
The high element challenges provide further opportunities for teamwork with an additional emphasis on individual challenges. The high elements allow participants to push their personal limits, and overcome fears that can block personal development and achievement. The high ropes course emphasizes risk-taking, trust, and coaching. The group provides real and figurative support and interaction on the high elements by having team members control the belay.
Challenge course activities provide an environment that is full of new experiences and personal discoveries that establish a setting that allows the facilitator to work with the group, helping them with debriefing and reflection, focusing on teamwork objectives and preparing them for bigger challenges - or the challenges found in the everyday world.
We invite groups or organizations outside of Catlin Gabel to use the challenge course. It’s a great opportunity for corporate team building and professional development, designed to:
• Build team interdependence
• Build collaborative problem solving
• Develop risk taking skills
• Open channels of communications
• Identify and develop leadership skills
• Clarify roles and responsibilities
• Strengthen relationships
Based on the needs and assessment of the particular visiting group, we will design a unique program to provide the best possible experience for group members.
Rates are “per person” with a 10 person minimum
Non – Profit organizations: $40/ per person full-day and $30/person half-day (4 hours or less)
Private, corporate or commercial groups: $100/ per person full-day and $75/person half-day (4 hours or less)
Special discounted rates are available for Catlin Gabel affiliated, non-commercial groups (e.g. PFA groups). Please contact the challenge course manager to determine your group needs. Rates will be dependent on the number of individuals, time on the course and additional items such as a catered lunch.
Half or full day programs are available, with a gourmet chef to prepare lunch on campus. Call or email David Reich, challenge course manager, for an appointment to tour the facility or to discuss your specific group needs: firstname.lastname@example.org, 503-297-1894 ext. 386.