June 4, 2016

Grand Rapids Treetop Adventure Park

Two days ago I was browsing through local events and activities and I came across the new Grand Rapids Treetop Adventure Park. I am slightly afraid of heights but I've always wanted to try an obstacle/ropes course and while I haven't heard of this park until now I decided to go out on a limb (har har) and reserve a spot for Brian and myself for Friday (yesterday) night.

We didn't necessarily need reservations as there weren't many climbers when we arrived but because I had paid and signed the waivers online we were able to get on the course in no time. :)

Equipment hut

After a quick stop at the porta potty (for me of course), we walked down to the equipment hut and were shown how to put on our gear.  I'm glad I wore a tee shirt because the harness straps were pretty tight and would have been uncomfortable on my bare (slightly sunburned) shoulders.  I had no hesitations wearing the gloves they offered because they helped me get a better grip and prevented the many blisters I would have gotten since the majority of the time I was hanging onto the ropes for dear life.

Learning the ropes

After we were equipped with our gear we had a quick lesson on how to use the clip-its and zip line attachments and then completed a short practice course to make sure we knew what we were doing.  After that we were on our own!

The park had six courses in total and Brian and I did five of them (we have yet to do the most difficult). We also went down the big zip line twice. The obstacles on the first course were super nerve-wracking for me and I had to pretend I wasn't high in the trees in order to keep moving forward and not freeze up.  My nerves definitely made climbing more exciting though I was happy the height didn't bother Brian much because I would have been a lot more scared if he was freaking out too.

The most awkward and difficult obstacle for me, I will be doing this one differently next time!

Brian killing it on the course (the one on the right was tough!)

I'm so glad Brian and I challenged ourselves to try out the adventure park, it was so much fun. Because there weren't many other people at the park we were able to go at our own pace and not feel rushed which made it even more enjoyable. The courses were all challenging and each one ended with a zip line or a cable jump. Even though we were climbing on our own there were always workers who watched to make sure everyone was doing ok and helped with all the dismounts.

 A few clips from the course

Near the end of the night one of the workers mentioned they might be expanding the park in the future.  I think that would be a great idea because even though the park is cool the way it is now, they have plenty of space to grow and when they inevitably become more popular it would be wise to have more courses so it doesn't become overly crowded.  In the meantime Brian and I need to go back (hopefully before the crowds!) and tackle that last course. Who's with us??

Exhausted but exhilarated after three hours of climbing


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