13-year old Raff road tests the new Treetops Adventure St Ives
The brand spanking new Treetops Adventure St Ives has to be the best high ropes park I have ever had the pleasure of leaping, swinging, flying and clambering through, across and over, and trust me, I’ve monkeyed my way around a lot of them.
We were lucky enough to be amongst the first to road test the newest Treetops Adventure Park (one of fourteen in Australia) and its eight courses, each graded by degree of difficulty. We’d pre-filled all our forms online, so it was as easy as walking in, getting strapped into helmets and harnesses by the super cool Treetops team and going through the extensive safety briefing, and we were off and racing to hit the trees for a two-and-a-half-hour session of treetop fun.
With courses starting from 1-metre all the way up to 15-metres high and packed with 15 ziplines and 95 aerial obstacles, tight ropes and nets, we decided to divide and conquer. My sister headed to the first of the green courses with my dad (which she assures me was AMAZING).
But I went for a trickier blue course packed with wild obstacles and great ziplines. But it was when I moved onto the red course that things really stated to get interesting. Usually, I find red courses a breeze, but this course was genuinely challenging with a bunch of wicked obstacles I’ve never come across before that left me flapping through the air like a demented bird. In the best possible way of course.
While my sister and dad had a go at the rest of the green and blue courses (there are two of each) I went rogue and headed for the black course, the toughest of them all. Now, this was my first ever black course, because usually they’re limited to people 16 and over. But not this one. Gulp.
I was a little nervous, but I reckon I was born to bounce around the treetops, so I just went for it. Let me just say it. It was not easy. From the very first obstacle I was sweating. I had to navigate my way through tiny dangling rings, over slippery inflatable swings, across a long rotating wire and over a series of floating discs that were impossible.
Did I fall or lose my footing? Of course not. Yeah, OK… I totally did. So, Many. Times. But that’s why they call them challenges, right? And it’s all part of the fun. Almost as much fun as watching my mum who, just quietly, is a bit of a wuss, stressing out on the ground below me as I dangled above her like a human chandelier. The final part of the black course, the drop, was the best, and most intimidating challenge though.
I had to jump 15 metres from the treetops to what, in my imagination, would be my inevitable death. In reality, the drop was super safe as I was fully harnessed and that slowed the freefall to the super soft landing mat below. I didn’t die once. In fact, I just wanted to hit repeat and do it all again.
Of course, not all the courses are so challenging or so high. One of the best things about this high ropes park is that there’s something for everyone as it’s been designed for a range of ages and physical abilities. If you’re younger or don’t like the heights of some adventure courses, Treetops Adventure St Ives is perfect as their courses are a little lower to the ground than most parks, and there’s a selection of beginner courses, including a safe course specifically designed with little kids in mind.
Oh, and as well excellent safety measures and instruction being in place, Covid-safe practices are high on the list of the safety priorities with only 180 participants allowed on the course at any one time to ensure social distancing.
But my favourite thing about Treetops Adventure St Ives, besides how insanely fun it is, is that it is committed to sustainability. The creators of the courses have adopted tree-friendly techniques for the long-term preservation of the host forest. They’ve mounted the platforms without drilling into trees so they can continue to grow, minimising impact on the environment. Cool, huh?
The time sessions are generous and because we raced through like madmen, my sister and I were able to pick our favourites and do them all over again. Though we could have happily stayed another two and half hours.
In fact, we loved it so much that we are rallying our respective troops and plan to swing back in with our friends for more monkeying around the treetops as soon as possible.
Reviewed by Raff – aged 13