Getting High in Jamaica
I was pretty terrified.
Weak kneed, breath-holding terrified.
I was standing on the edge of small tree platform, high above the Jamaican rain forest, looking down at all the treetops. About eye level with the birds.
With the forest canopy beneath me, the guides from Chukka Tours expertly snapped all the hooks and cables in place and I could feel myself about to shout out, “I don’t want to do this, Man” !
Thankfully before I could, one of the women leaders placed a reassuring hand on my shoulder, told me to sit in my harness, and gently pushed me out into wide open space.
And there I was.
Sailing, soaring above the trees, flying, zipping along a cable, gathering speed and …making a soft landing onto the next tree platform, welcomed by a pair of strong, brown arms.
What a hero, I thought.
Only next time I’ll remember to breathe.
And so on to the next eight flights, combinations of vertical heart- stopping drops and wonderfully exhilarating runs that had me remembering a long, long time ago when a primal self flew from tree to tree, without a cable and without fear.
Well, not exactly, but it was a fun image.
Canopy Tours or Ziplining are becoming very popular, though certainly not mainstream, and are still an exotic form of adventure travel.
Our next Ziplining experience, in Nicaragua, launched us from a rugged mountain complete with incredible views of lakes, birds and jungle.
In fact we made a one-minute Travel Video PostCard of the experience.
Lots of screaming .
The Ziplining industry has all the information you’ll ever need, and some fun videos.
The principle is pretty simple: you basically swing or zip from tree to tree on a series of cables strung above the jungle canopy. Maybe you pray a little.Continued on the next page