High-Risk Activities are
Now Called High-Adventure! 

We believe high-adventure better reflects the spirit of these exciting activities.  The approval process and requirement to use an approved vendor still applies.

High-Adventure Activities

(Formerly called High-Risk)

Land Sports: archery, backpacking, bicycling with vendor-supplied bicycles, “bounce houses,” caving, challenge/ropes courses, climbing walls, marksmanship,* gymnastics, horseback riding, rock climbing, skateboarding at a skateboard park, skiing, snowboarding, trapeze, vaulting (on horseback), when girls ages 12 and older will operate motorized vehicles, simulated skydiving, zero-gravity rooms, and zorbing.

*Marksmanship activities require special permission from the counci's executive team and GSNorCal’s insurance companies. The minimum age for girls using firearms in highly-supervised activities is 12 years old.

Travel: Any trip that is three nights or more

Water Activities: boating, canoeing, kayaking, rafting, sailing, scuba, snorkeling, swimming, tubing, water skiing, windsurfing, any type of trips on waterways that are highly changeable or uncontrollable (Class V and higher watercraft trips are never allowed), or when girls ages 12 and older will operate motorized watercraft.

Any other activity which might be considered high-adventure based on the criteria listed under why activities are considered high-adventure.

High-Adventure Steps to Remember

High-Adventure Approved Vendor List: Troops are required to use an approved vendor for high-adventure activities. Click here to find out more.

GSNorCal Approval Needed: Written pre-approval from the council is needed for all high-adventure activities.  This is a very easy step when the vendor is already approved.

Why are Activities are Considered “High-Adventure?”

The activities specified as high-adventure are included because they fit into one or both of the following categories:

1. The activity involves a reasonable expectation of physical risk to the girls

2. The activity involves legal risk to the adult volunteers and/or the council.


Contact Risk Management and Travel staff based out of the Alameda Office at travel@GirlScoutsNorCal.org for approval to participate in any high-adventure activity listed above.

Activities That Are Never Allowed

Due to insurance or safety concerns, the following activities are prohibited, either by GSUSA and/or GSNorCal:

  • Creating extreme variations of approved activities, such as high-altitude climbing, aerial tricks on bicycles, skis, snowboards, skateboards, water skis, wakeboards, or stunt skiing.
  • Flying in noncommercial aircraft, such as small private planes, helicopters, sailplanes, un-tethered hot-air balloons, or blimps.
  • Jeep tours where participants will not be wearing seatbelts.
  • Hunting
  • Potentially uncontrolled free-falling (bungee jumping, hang gliding, parachuting, or parasailing)
  • Riding all-terrain vehicles or motor bikes
  • Riding motorized personal watercraft like jet-skis
  • Shooting a projectile at another person, such as paintball
  • Taking watercraft trips in Class V or higher whitewater

In addition, there are some activities in which girls and volunteers may not engage when representing Girl Scouts. These include:

  • Endorsement of commercial products or services,
  • Solicitation of financial contributions for purposes other than Girl Scouting (any other organization), and
  • Participation in political campaigns or legislative activities, unless the legislative activity has been council approved.

Activities that are never allowed are not covered by Girl Scout insurance. Restrictions on activities are set to ensure the girls' safety, protect the council's and adult volunteers' legal interests, or both.