I wish I could say I have a love affair but the truth is, I have a love and hate relationship. I have a love and hate relationship with heights.
Sometimes, I love the absolute thrill of being up high, right above you can see far and wide. But there are times that the thought of being up high terrifies me, like I have absolutely no control. That’s why when we received the invitation to try out Camp Fortune’s Aerial Park; I am both nervous and excited as we drove to Chelsea, Quebec (about 15-20 minutes away from Ottawa) to take on this fun summer activity as part of our @20YS #STAYCATION series.
THE SET-UP AND THE SAFETY BRIEFING
Built with over 55 ziplines and obstacles, we were set on trying out The Explorer, the longest aerial park with the most zip lines. It takes about 2.5 to 3 hours to complete this adventure. But first, everything starts with getting warmly welcomed by Assistant Manager Stephanie and getting instructed to sign the waiver form, get suited with equipment (by Paul and Nick) along with the safety briefing executed competently by Camp Fortune staff.
In fact, the entire experience has been wonderful as the staff at Camp Fortune is highly trained and has excellent customer service skills, starting with Erin Boucher, Marketing Manager at Camp Fortune.
The calm before the storm is a walk through the scenic Gatineau Hills to get to the foot of the starting line. There are 3 sets of aerial park in Camp Fortune: The Explorer, The Amazone and the Children Park. Although there is an age recommendation for the Children Park, do know that getting admitted to the park is based on reach, which means it depends on the height of the child, as some are taller than others. Here’s the guidelines: Minimum reach requirement* Children’s Park (Zone 1-2): 1.35 m for the intro course Explorer/Amazone (Zone 1-5): 1.75 m for the full course.
CHALLENGING BUT FUN OBSTACLES AND ZIPLINES
Mounting our first tree to start was a breeze though there was a line up to get into the first challenge, as we were quite a big group. Since there are safety requirements to limit the number of the people on the ‘bridge’ and on the trees, you have to wait for the people ahead of you to get cross through the obstacles successfully. This includes walking through suspended monkey bridges, rope bridges, suspended walkways and net gangways and those tricky single plank bridges that twist and turn depending on where your foot lands on them.
There are plenty of moments where your adrenaline gets jacked up as you teeter your way into walking on tight rope, testing your balance, agility and well, fear of heights. To add to the thrill, Zone 4 recently re-built zone 4 of the aerial park with exciting new obstacles including: logged tight rope, net barrels, handlebar zipline, climbing wall and a floating platform.
Does everybody finish successfully to have that victory glass of champagne? Sadly, we have to be honest, no. There were a couple that didn’t make it through the end for a few reasons, some were not physically fit to complete the obstacles (you do need a considerable amount of upper body strength as sometimes you have to pull yourself up and forward in some of the suspended tight rope), some were removed from the course for failing to abide to safety regulation, while others, simply for the fear of height.
But for those who had the endurance to complete all the courses in this high-altitude activity, we had the ultimate thrill of flying through the giant zipline all the way to the finish line.
If you are up for walking through suspended climb ladders, amble across zigzag bridges, crawl through barrels, and fly through the air in zip lines and soar above the tree tops overlooking Gatineau Hills, then we have great news for you! We are giving away a Family Pack at Camp Fortune Aerial Park, that’s 4 passes for you!
CAMP FORTUNE AERIAL PARK @20YS GIVE-AWAY
To enter, you have to be @20YS follower of course but make sure you FOLLOW Camp Fortune in Twitter (@campfortune), LIKE Camp Fortune in Facebook and leave us a comment on what’s your favourite summer activity and that’s it! Winners will be announced on Thursday, August 21st, good luck!
Camp Fortune Aerial Park is open until November 3, 2014. You can visit during the weekday (group reservation only) or the weekends but please do make sure to call ahead for reservations. There is a refreshment corner for some snacks as well as a licensed bar if you feel like celebrating when you zip.. er.. cross the finish line! As an added bonus, Camp Fortune has added the exhilarating Free Fall Big Jump this summer so you could try that too!
Now run, don’t walk. Go enter!
Disclaimer: Aerial Park passes have been provided for our review. Review and opinion is our own.