Don't Try This at Home: Daredevils and Thrill Seekers
Taking Tall Tales to New Heights
Scaling a rock wall without a rope? Walking across a wire, hundreds of feet in the air? Climbing the world’s highest peaks? These daredevils love the feeling of open space around them. But if you’re afraid of heights, don’t worry: You can enjoy this adventure with your feet firmly planted on the ground.
what you’ll need
Besides the device you're viewing this on, something to write with, and something to write on, you will need...
Paint brushes, including one small, flat brush
Optional: canvas for painting (paper is also fine)
Ask About Today
Why do you think some people love doing things that other people find scary?
Skip the Ads
Unfortunately, online videos often start with short advertisements. Remind your campers to click the "Skip" button as soon as they can to move ahead to the video.
No Rope, No Worries
Sure, you’ve heard of people who climb mountains and rock walls thousands of feet above the ground. But have you heard of someone doing it without a rope? This extreme sport is called free soloing, and it’s not for the faint of heart. Meet Alex Honnold, the first person to free solo El Capitan, a 3,000 foot rock formation in Yosemite National Park. In this TED Talk, Alex explains how he prepares for such a physically—and mentally—demanding task.
Remember: Online videos often start with advertisements. (Annoying, we agree!) Click the "Skip" button as soon as you can to move ahead to the video.
The Youngest Rock Star
Ashima Shiraishi became known as the world’s best female rock climber by the time she was just 14. Ashima started climbing in Central Park, New York City, when she was only six. Here’s how she developed her passion for climbing.
A High-Wire Dream
In 1968, Philippe Petit, a French street performer, got a radical idea: to walk between the two towers of New York’s World Trade Center—on a wire, a quarter-mile high into the sky. In the summer of 1974, he made it happen, much to the shock of passersby beneath him.
Walking the Wire
Watch Petit in action during other high-wire walks in this short video.
Climbing for All
Sibusiso Vilane is a world-class mountaineer and the first Black man to summit Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world. Now he’s on a mission to encourage young Black climbers.
Life In Everest’s Shadow
Guided climbing exhibitions up Mount Everest have become big business. But for the indigenous Sherpa people of Nepal and Tibet, who provide essential skills navigating the mountains and carrying heavy loads, this work is dangerous and low-paying. No one has climbed Everest more times than Apa Sherpa, who has scaled the peak 21 times—but he says he “wouldn’t wish this on anyone.” Watch this short film about Apa Sherpa’s life and the work of Sherpas in the Himalayas.
Content Warning: The film is subtitled, so it is best for Kinda Campers who are comfortable reading fluently. Please be aware that the film includes discussion of hardship, including poverty and death.
For younger explorers
How to Solve a Problem
Meet Ashima Shiraishi, a teenager who loves to climb, in her book How to Solve a Problem. Listen along with Ms. Y.
For younger explorers
All About Everest
Join Mr. DeMaio and his friends to learn all about Mount Everest, the tallest mountain in the world.
Design Your Own Extreme Sport
What’s the most extreme sporting event you can think up if you don’t have to worry about safety? Leaping from rooftops? Diving over waterfalls? Write out the rules of the game and draw what it looks like in action. Just remember: Whatever you do, don’t try this at home.
Paint the Peaks
Paint your own beautiful mountain landscape with this step-by-step tutorial. You’ll just need some paint and brushes, a paper or canvas, and a piece of chalk.
You don’t need a beam—or a wire—to learn how to balance. All you need is some tape. Spread a long piece of tape in a straight line along the floor and practice walking on it without touching the ground on either side. Got that down? Mix it up and try walking backwards, hopping, or balancing a few books on your head at the same time.
Pro Tip: We recommend masking or painter’s tape for this so it peels off easily when you’re done.
Try your hand (and arms, and legs) at this super intense exercise. We promise, you’ll be ready for a nap afterwards. Make sure you’re doing it right with help from KidFitGo!