07:52 Thursday 21 February 2013

Go Ape tree top adventure

Written byLeah Cassady

Cannock Chase is Go Ape’s longest tree top adventure, out of 28 in the UK. The course spans a total length of 1,465 metres throughout an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

This vast course has a huge variety of tree top obstacles for you to tackle, including tricky crossings using ladders, walkways, bridges and tunnels made of wood, rope walls, wooden beams, super-strong wire, tarzan swings and exhilarating zip wires.

I have to say I had a lot of fun watching Mark attempt the stirrups! He didn't have much luck and nearly did the splits several times, I was in stitches. Needless to say I was smart enough to choose the easier option after that.

The longest zip wire was 260 metres, and you really do feel the wind whipping past you as you speed by the forest below. I loved them, but the landing didn’t seem to go the way I wanted it to. You can turn as you’re travelling down the wire, and all but once I ended up landing backwards. It’s a soft landing but I ended up with woodchip everywhere, not desirable but definitely still fun.

The obstacles were rated easy to extreme and where there is an extreme option, you’re given a calmer alternative. Although don’t forget the height adds to those ratings, for example, climbing a small narrow ladder doesn’t seem like much, but when you’re already up a tree and that ladder takes you up further to around 14 metres off the ground, you feel a little nervous climbing it.

Each tree top session offers two to three hours of fun and if like me and my friend, you tackle the course faster than expected, you can try out another one of the courses again. We went back to course 5 for the big tarzan swing.

The tree top adventure not only provides you will a rush but you’re also surrounded by breathtaking scenery. It’s a great place to take a picnic for afterwards as you certainly build up an appetite from all that climbing. Or you could take advantage of the café, I’ve been told they do excellent Panini’s.

If after your session in the trees you still haven’t had enough and feel up to it, there are plenty of walks and cycle routes for you to enjoy, you can even hire bikes if you want to. With all that scenery it’s worth taking it in and soaking up any sun rays that make an appearance.

It’s a great place to take a big group of friends, and if you have a few that don’t feel up to it, they could always come along and watch. You’re also free to take cameras with you to capture the day and your daring acts. They even offer you a certificate after, I just couldn’t resisit!

As their saying goes, you really do feel like you’re living life more adventurously.  I’ve never done anything like this before but I like to think of myself as a little bit of an adrenaline junkie, at least I love the idea of jumping from a plane or bungee jumping. It was a great experience, whether for a birthday, celebration, stag/hen party or just an excuse to get a load of friends together.

There’s lots to do and you’ll be surprised how fast the hours go by. One of the great things about Go Ape is that it doesn’t depend on our unpredictable weather, no matter if it’s warm, cold or even raining - it’s still fun and it’s still open.

Part of the film footage was recorded using a GoPro Hero2.
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