Climb On Safely
Climb On Safely
Designed for unit climbing/rappelling, Climb On Safely is the BSA's recommended procedure for organizing and managing climbing and rappelling activities at all levels of the Scouting program: Tiger Cubs, Cub Scouting, Webelos Scouting, Boy Scouting, Varsity Scouting, and Venturing. It offers guidance for climbing and rappelling at national sites and at specifically designed facilities, including climbing towers and fixed and portable walls. Climb On Safely has eight points to help ensure the safety and well-being of participants:
- Qualified Supervision
- Qualified Instructors
- Physical Fitness
- Environmental Conditions
- Safe Area
Climb On Safely is not designed to prepare leaders to instruct BSA youth in the skills of climbing or rappelling. Teaching climbing or rappelling requires a trained climbing instructor who meets the criteria defined in Climb On Safely.
Climbing and BSA
During the summer of 1995, youth participants in the National Junior Leader Instructor Camp held at Philmont Scout Ranch identified climbing as an increasingly popular activity. They requested the development of program literature by the Boy Scouts of America in support of climbing. In May 1997, the first edition of the Climbing merit badge pamphlet was released and proved to be extremely popular.
In September 1997, a national climbing task force was organized, and members met for the first time to discuss suggestions they received regarding climbing techniques and appropriate safety measures. Their vision was to develop climbing literature and training for units and councils. As a result, Climb On Safely was developed and made available in fall 1998. Similar to Safe Swim Defense and Safety Afloat, Climb On Safely is designed to orient adult leaders with the proper procedure for organizing and managing BSA climbing/rappelling activities for their units.
In the two years following Climb On Safely's introduction, the climbing task force developed additional materials for use by Scouts and leaders. These included the Climb On Safely Training Outline, a revised Climbing merit badge pamphlet, Climbing/Rappelling National Standards, Topping Out: A BSA Climbing/Rappelling Manual, and a Climbing Lesson Plan for a new Climbing section at National Camping School.