Tag Archives: zipline

Ziplines: Fear no factor (but strength can be)

Photo courtesy Kersey Valley Zipline Canopy Tours
Photo courtesy Kersey Valley Zipline Canopy Tours

When I saw the zipline at Go Ape, my thoughts drifted back a century or so to the kids who lived on the south side of the Rocky River in Chatham County who had to get to school on the north side of the river. With no bridge for miles, someone strung a steel cable across the river, tied it off around some trees, then had the kids ride in a bucket across the river to school every morning, back home every afternoon.
I thought about those frigid January mornings riding in an ice bucket. I thought about those days after (or during) a heavy rain, when the roiling Rocky would have been nipping at their keisters. I thought about how this “zipline” was likely devoid of rigorous safety oversight — or any oversight at all.
And I thought about how those kids who rode in a bucket over the river to school every day likely went through life nonplussed by the challenges they faced, challenges that, compared to their commute, likely seemed pretty manageable. read more

Man, is there ever a lot to do in North Carolina

Fayetteville's ZipQuest

Tuesday, I had one of the more exhausting times I’ve had in 20 years of covering outdoor adventure — and I was in an air-conditioned building. At a catered affair.
The affair was a media event sponsored by the North Carolina Division of Tourism, a gathering of tourism promotion types from around the state and the people they hoped would write about them. People such as myself.
Immediately upon walking in the door of the Contemporary Art Museum — CAM for short — in downtown Raleigh I was met by my old buddy, Suzanne Brown. Suzanne and I worked together for years in the Features Department of The News & Observer, Suz overseeing everything entertainment, me doing my outdoors thing. In 2008, we were both part of a massive newsroom exodus. I landed here, Suz  at Tourism, a job that suits her as she wasted little time getting my attention.
“Do you know about the Southeast Coast Saltwater Paddle Trail?” she asked.
I didn’t, but I didn’t feel too bad upon learning that the trail is a work in progress, a proposed — though some of it exists — paddle trail running from Virginia south through the Carolinas and Georgia, where it will meet with the existing 1,515-mile Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail. A kind of Appalachian Trail for paddlers.
“Cool!” I said.
“What about Jetpacks?” she wanted to know.
“And what about telephones with TV screens and flying cars?” I said.
No, she said, you can now rent a JetPak on the Outer Banks.
Then, in a Graduatesque nod to the Next Big Thing, she leaned in and whispered “Zip Lines.” read more