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Z is for Ziplining

Mt. Hermon Redwood Canopy Tours

Oh boy!

Because this week's ABC Wednesday (hosted by Mrs. Nesbitt) features the letter Z, I can blather about ziplining again.

Ziplining through the redwoods in the Santa Cruz mountains, as some of you dear readers know, is what I did for my birthday last month.  I hung happily in a harness from a pulley attached to a cable about 13 stories high. When it was safely time to go, the guide slightly nudged me forward and I was gliding quickly along that cable through the redwood forest to the next platform. Swhooooooooooosh!

This is the equipment I wore.

The zip lines ranged from 110 to  440 feet long. Waiting for my turn was longer than the ride between the platforms. Exhilarating really is the perfect word to describe how it feels to dangle from a pulley and ziiiiiiiiiip among the trees. The initial fear was gone after completing the first zip line.  Yep, that tiny simple machine of a pulley can really hold me up. I may have swayed in my harness as I rushed forward, but I did not haphazardly crash into the trees like I thought could happen.  And, yes, I was quite able to stop myself at the end of the ride, thank you very much.

The highlighted area is the next platform.

Braking was nothing more than putting one of your leather-gloved palms flat against the cable above you. You start braking only when you see the guide signal you to start slowing down. You press your palm ever so lightly on the cable. If you press too much, you find yourself several yards short of the platform. I did that on the first zipline. No problem. I quickly turned myself around and pulled myself in.  That was fun, too.

Nope, not me. T'was our guide.
The platforms that we zipped to and from were built sturdily around redwood trees, which if I remember correctly were all second growth redwood trees.  Whenever we were on the platforms, we were clipped in so there really was no danger of falling off. Well, we could fall, but we would be dangling only a few feet below the platform.  Not that I was going to test it. Okay, maybe the thought passed through my mind.

I'm starting to think that maybe being up in the air is where I like to be. As a kid, I liked climbing trees. The favorite part of my one time of rock climbing, a long time ago, was stopping midway on the cliff and looking around at the vista. I did tandem skydiving a few years ago and enjoyed it immensely. I'd do that again. Ziplining? I'm already looking for another place to try out. Wieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Now zip on over to ABC Wednesday to find more Z posts by other bloggers.


  1. What an interesting and fun activity. Don't know whether or not I'd try it, tho. It reminds me of some lines of "Birches" by Robert Frost:

    One by one he subdued his father's trees
    By riding them down over and over again
    Until he took the stiffness out of them,
    And not one but hung limp, not one was left
    For him to conquer. He learned all there was
    To learn about not launching out too soon
    And so not carrying the tree away
    Clear to the ground.

  2. Wow. Interesting, but I just don't see myself doing that! Glad you enjoyed yourself.

    ROG, ABC Wednesday team

  3. Love your post, and love Mt. Herman. I did a workshop at a Women's Retreat a couple of years ago... and that as close as I got to the Zipline.

    Our church camp at Sugar Pine has a similar challenge...and a lot of our ladies took it... I took pictures from below...

    Great choice for Z and great pictures.

  4. OMG, I can't believe I didn't think to do a zipline in the USA! I've done it in Belize and I heard they have fantastic ones in Bolivia, but I hadn't thought to check them out here. I'm so glad you posted this.

  5. I'm so glad that you are doing this and I don't have to! Enjoyed your narrative as I had no idea of the mechanics of the thing although I've talked to others who have zipped through the woods and watch their vids. Good post!

  6. That sounds that a fun day out, zipping through the trees.

  7. Kate! Thanks for sharing these lines. They do fit my experience perfectly. :-)

    Roger, you never know. :-)

    Wanda, thank you. I'd like to go back and walk the path of the ziplines. It was so beautiful.

    Alice, I'd love to hear what you have out your way.

    Tumblewords, thanks. You can count on me doing it for you again one day. :-)

    Joy, it was mighty joyful. :-)


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