What you think ziplining might be like and what a tour at Ziptrek Whistler is really like, are two completely different things. Sure I’ve ziplined before on a holiday in Mexico and at an outdoor camp as a kid, but that was nothing like what I experienced at Ziptrek recently. As the regular Whistler Reservations blogger, I’d like to share with you first hand what a tour at Ziptrek is really like.
Yesterday at 9am I grabbed a coffee, met my friend Suz and headed to the Ziptrek tents in the Whistler Village for an Eagle Tour. There we signed our waivers and met our two guides, Sasha and Ian. We were then quickly outfitted in a fully body harness and headed for the Whistler gondola station. I’ve been up and down that gondola many times before with skis or hiking packs, but I’ve never learned so much on the short ride to mid-station as I did yesterday. Our guides were oozing with knowledge of the local forests and terrain. Once outside of the gondola we were able to see the new Sasquatch zipline that will open July 30, 2015. As soon as I saw this “mini peak to peak” I knew I would have to come back and try it. Sasha informed us that it is over 2km in length and will be much faster than any existing ziplines at Ziptrek. The coolest part about the new Sasquatch zipline is that you can zipline side by side. Imagine flying at top speed from Blackcomb Mountain across the valley to Whistler Mountain with a friend by your side to share the experience with, now that sounds awesome.
After we had all wiped the drool off our faces from admiring the soon to be Sasquatch zipline, we headed into the trees on a walking path. As we approached our first zipline I was a tiny bit nervous not knowing what to expect as clearly, by past zipline experiences were nothing like the Sasquatch line I had just seen. A raised platform soon appeared from the treed trail and one of our guides took off quickly across the zipline to set it up while another stayed and told us what to do and what not to do while ziplining. The reality was, there was much more we could do than couldn’t! The guide’s brake for you, all we have to do is have fun and not touch the metal, pretty simple! The first zipline was the only side by side on our tour and it was my favorite. My friend Suz and I got the cameras ready for our first ziplining adventure of the day and then headed to the loading area where the guides safety clipped us in and gave us a few words of advice. On the count of three, Suz and I were gliding side by side on one of the longest ziplines at Ziptrek. We giggled, took photos, and sailed over the treetops of the Fitzsimmons Valley. It was a blast.
We continued on in a pattern of walking on small nature trails then ziplining across the valley. We were able to test out some tricks on a few of the lines like grabbing out heals, flipping upside down or just about anything else we could cook up. The ziplines were fast, but not scary fast. I was surprised I didn’t want to close by eyes, but rather take in the 360-degree view of the valley between Whistler and Blackcomb. Both Sasha and Ian our guides were great and telling us about the environment we were wondering through and how not only we can make a difference in keeping it beautiful, but all the efforts that Ziptrek has made to keep the forest healthy and happy. It really makes you feel good knowing that when you’re admiring the woods, you aren’t hurting its future.
Near the end of our tour we encountered suspension bridges, look out platforms and winding stairways in the treetops. The views, the smells, the adrenaline; it was all so perfect. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw the familiar large Ziptrek tower emerge from the treetops. I knew this was the last zipline, right into the village. As I flew over the Bike Park and spotted familiar landmarks in the village I reflected on what an experience my tour had been. It’s not everyday you can soar like an Eagle through old growth forests and walk along the mountainsides with a knowledgeable guide. My morning had been the perfect mix of adrenaline, environmental learning, making new friends and laughs. I could zipline again in a heartbeat, and I’ll most defiantly be back to check out the Sasquatch this summer!
Whistler Reservations is running a 15% Discount if Booked outside of 72 Hours of tour. All Bookable Online here: https://www.whistlerreservations.com/summer-activities/ziptrek-ecotours