Usually the most exciting thing to do in a food court is go back for seconds. But the Galleria at Pittsburgh Mills has that beat by a mile—or by 32 feet, at least. That's how tall the Pittsburgh Mills Sky Trail ropes course stands, giving participants quite the view as they traverse its zig-zag beams, angled rope ladders, and cargo nets. All told, the two-story course comprises 30 elements, but even after completing all those, adventurers still aren't finished. That's because the course also includes the Sky Rail zipline, which lets riders soar above the ground for nearly 70 feet, as many times as they like.
The Sky Trail maintains an active presence on its Facebook page, where it shares photos of both the main ropes course and the Sky Tykes course, a small-scale version designed for kids age 2 to 7.
At 14,000 square feet, The Climbing Wall might be the next best thing to the great outdoors. Challenges abound for climbers, as the staff resets the routes several times a week. Top-roping walls stretch up to 30 feet high and present participants with obstacles such as overhangs and slabs. The bouldering walls are equally as imposing, with three top outs. Both adults and kids can take classes to learn how to tackle the walls and show off their skills in the real world by skipping the stairs and climbing up to their bedrooms.
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Climbers stand at the base of the textured plywood and rock surfaces that climb the walls of Kendall Cliffs' 7,000-foot space and picture themselves reaching the summit—a 35-foot high arch that reaches across to the opposite wall. Designed by Nicros, the facility presents varying gravitational challenges for scalers to mount, from tackling the bouldering cave to tickling the bouldering cave's petroglyphs. Intrepid and experienced instructors lead climbing classes, calibrated for varying skill levels and covering topics such as knot tying, belaying, bouldering, and sport routes.
The experienced climbing staff at Climb North oversees an indoor facility with 30 rock-climbing paths. In addition to advanced climbing routes and bouldering walls, there’s a beginning climbing area for the uninitiated and a grassy slope for mountain goats. The facility also offers monthly packages to avid climbers and party rentals for adventurous celebrations, which include cakes and snacks in a decorated party area before group climbs.
You'd think a place called Climb would be outfitted with artificial rock walls. But this fitness studio centers around a collection of Keiser M3 stationary bikes—the bikes simulate the hills and climbs you'd encounter on a real road course. Motivating instructors lead 45- to 60-minute classes that power through sprints and jumps. The sessions are suitable for exercisers of all fitness levels, as each rider gets to control their own speed and resistance. And to keep students comfortable, Climb is outfitted with locker rooms and showers.