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I know for many of you, the snow is falling, you have to scrape the car in the morning, and going outside is the last thing you want to do.   For those of you in more temperate climates, one fantastic outdoor activity is Zip lining.  However, you have to do it right.

We went on vacation this past summer down to the Smoky Mountains of Kentucky.  I had heard there was great Zip lining down south, but I wasn’t real familiar with the whole concept.  As we were trapped on the main road leading through Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg, I saw roadside places that offered zip lining and I thought “Well this can’t be what I have heard so much about.  This looks commercial and boring”.  After some research on Tripadvisor though, I found the perfect place to go Zip Lining.

We used a Zip line company called Climb Works.  As opposed to climbing to the top of a platform on the side of a busy road, this experience required going up a mountain in a van to where the zip line platforms were.  We only had to climb up one platform, the rest of the experience was zip lining from one platform to the other- and some were a quarter mile apart.  You are required to wear a helmet and a harness-contraption to ensure your safety.

I will admit, I was hesitant at first because I am terrified of heights.   When they attached the clip from my harness to the zip line, I didn’t know if I could do it.  Once I did finally step off that program, I just yelled “this is funnnnn!” and never worried about the heights again.  I zipped over treetops, creeks, ravines, you name it.  All you could see was nature, and it was amazing.  At some points I was 250 feet in the air, but I didn’t even notice it.

This looks amazing!

Here are a few things to note about zip lining:

  1. Almost anyone can do it.  My youngest son was too small to go alone, so he ‘piggybacked’ with my daughter.  You could hear them laughing as they whipped along to the next platform.  I believe it is recommended you be at least 100 pounds to zip line alone.  I know there is an upper limit for weight, but it is dependent on the size of the zip line and the distance.  Where we went, the upper limit was around 325 pounds I believe.
  2. It is incredibly easy.  The hardest part is landing on the platform.  If you pay attention to the instructions the guide provides at the beginning, and you look to the guide as you come in to the platform, you will be fine.  You either squinch up into a ball if you need to go faster to reach the platform, or spread out like a starfish if you need to slow down.  They will help you.
  3. It is expensive.  We spent 80 dollars a person where we went.  However, it lasted about 2.5-3 hours, and it was such a unique experience that it was worth every penny.
  4. If it is warm out, go in the morning or the evening.  It gets hot out there in the sun wearing that harness!

So next time you are on vacation, check to see if zip lining is available.  Since many zip line companies are located in remote areas, you may need to do some research to find a perfect place.  I promise it is an experience you will not forget.

Crystal’s Comments and Questions:  Now I totally want to go!  It sounds like a blast!  Have any of you ever been zip lining yourselves?