Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Go Ape

At Christmas time, my mom asked me what my kids wanted.  I was hard pressed to come up with an idea for ME let alone for my mom.  Then it hit me!  I wanted my mom to give my kids an experience rather than a gift.  She wound up giving Ella and Jack magazine subscriptions (another good idea) and she got Nicholas a GoApe Treetop adventure.  

What is GoApe you ask?  In their words:  Go Ape would be described as a 'treetop adventure.' That means we build giant obstacle courses up in the trees using ladders, walkways, bridges and tunnels made of wood, rope and super-strong wire and top it all off with the world's best zip lines.

I've had this planned for a month or so.  I figured it was the perfect time to go as Ella and Jack are both in VBS this week and Nicholas is not. It just figures we woke up this morning and it was pouring rain.  I thought about canceling, but it didn't seem worth it.  Our schedule was clear for this day and who knew when it could work out again.  So we went.  A little rain couldn't stop us.  It did stop just about everyone else though and we didn't see one other person on the course until we were leaving.  That was GREAT!  

The first "obstacle" is a Tarzan swing into a giant rope/net that you have to scale to get to the next tree top.  Way to start us off easy.  Haha!  

The Tarzan swing actually wasn't bad it was scaling the rope/net thingy (which I don't have a picture of).  It took a lot of upper body strength to get up that thing.  I tried to remember to use my legs, but damn!  

I might have gotten a little ahead of myself.  In the beginning of each obstacle there is a rope ladder you have to climb to get to the first landing.  Sometimes the ladder was STRAIGHT up.  That also took a lot of strength.  I kept thinking to myself, if you tried this and you were an out of shape person, you'd be screwed.  

Ok so then once you got to the top there was a landing where you would hook in for your next obstacle.  

The obstacles were made up of wood, wire, ropes and such.  Each one was different and had it's own challenges. 


You might recall, I've been zip lining before.  During my pervious experience, the guide stayed with you the whole time and moved your carabiner for you.  This time the guides were NOT with you and you were responsible for moving the carabiner and your own safety. 

Now don't get me wrong, they gave you a "tutorial" beforehand, but I still felt like it could be a bit complicated for people who are intelligent challenged.  Having said that, my 10 year old was able to do it without making any mistakes so there's that.  It's just that you don't get a second chance if you fall from the tree platform.  I can't even imagine that they let some people up in the trees alone.  

Nevertheless, I felt pretty safe because I felt like I knew what I was doing.  I understood the double clipping and made sure I was clipped in at all times.  We were definitely rule followers and didn't take any chances.  I wondered a bunch of times if people actually do break the rules and just move as they please and not according to the safety requirements.  Oh well, can't worry about them I guess.  The point is, we followed the rules and I did feel safe.  

At GoApe North Park there are 5 obstacle sites.  Each starts with a ladder and ends with the ZIP LINE!  The best part is the zip line and where all of us had the most fun.  Nicholas loved zip lining.  He was definitely scared on some of the obstacles (especially the Tarzan), but he got more and more confident as the day went on.  It was such a fun experience with him.   

I loved this gift from my mom, I loved spending time alone with just Nicholas (and George) and I loved that it was an experience for just him.  I'm thinking giving an experience is a tradition my mom should do every year.   This gift was definitely priceless.  


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