The Experience

C. O. P. E. - The Experience

COPE tower
The 1979 Dalajamb International Encampment in Sweden provided a number of challenging events of great interest to Scouts from the United States. Foremost among them was the pioneering course constructed by a group of veteran Swedish Scouts. The course was laid out in a heavily wooded area and utilized terrain elevations as part of the design. Bridges were built across ravines, zip lines hung for traversing other ravines and novel constructions were used for climbing. 

The National Council of the BSA was interested in programs similar to such successful overseas Jamboree activities as aforementioned that could be promoted nationwide. Project COPE was identified as have that potential because it offered older Scouts the kind of challenging and exciting program that encouraged them to return to summer camp and increased their tenure. An unexpected result was the use of Project COPE by outside groups. These groups found it to be an excellent tool for developing both team effort and individual achievement. 


  • Leadership
  • Self-esteem
  • Decision Making
  • Communication
  • Trust
  • Teamwork
  • Problem Solving


 Positive Knowing what can go wrong 

 Caring  Supervising activities

 Safety First
  Teaching others



Groups should first complete a series of group games with minimal props. These games are the first introduction to COPE goals and objectives.


Groups complete low course events with direct physical support from team mates with the goal of 100% participation and completion. Camp Pirtle has 21 low course elements: Mohawk Walk, Criss Cross, Triangle Traverse, Port Hole, Swinging Log, G. P. Shuffle, Tee Pee Shuffle, Texas Skis, Hot Isotope, Spider Web, A Frame, Texas Lizard, Chocolate River, Nitro Crossing, Here to There, Tire Traverse, The Swings, Artesian Beams, Track Walk, Team Wall and Wild Woozy.


Individuals are harnessed and belayed up to 40 feet in the air and must focus on mental strength to achieve the goals and objectives. Camp Pirtle has a 63 foot climbing and rapelling wall, a zip line and 12 other high course elements: Trust Fall, Giant's Ladder, Challenge Pole, Multi Vine, Two Line Traverse, HeeBee JeeBee, Mush Line, Centipede, Burma Bridge, Catwalk, Tree Rappel and a Gap Step.