The day had finally arrived! Four 30somethings, all with young families, were about to hit up nature’s ultimate playground at Treetop Trekking Ganaraska and pretend they were kids again.
Departing from Peterborough, we took the picturesque Milbrook route and found ourselves at the park 15 minutes before our 9 a.m. excursion after a quick 30 minute drive. Clouds were out and it had rained the night before so we all dressed appropriately—athletic shoes, track pants, shorts, gloves, long sleeve tees, and of course plaid were all represented.
Pictured left to right: Brent, Mike & Rachael (the awesome guides), Ben, Heather and PTBOCanada's Aaron Elliott
We were greeted at the desk by Assistant Manager Nic (aka Cap’n Crunch), who had us sign a very informative waiver (wait, what?!) before we could begin. Believe it or not, what we were about to partake in came with a slight bit of risk. But as we found out, if you listen to your guides and obey the logical rules everything would be alright at 70 feet up!
Our seasoned guides, Rachael and Mike, were incredibly friendly and patient right from the start. They suited us up in our gear, explaining that when used properly were the difference between flying through the trees and dropping from them! After a quick laugh when realizing how hard they were to take off when you needed to go to the washroom quickly, we set off for orientation.
The rig our Aaron Elliott wears for his excursion
The rules were really quite simple. Always stay hooked up, clasp on your carabiners every time you saw red tape (there was a lot of it), and when you get to yellow tape it’s time for your zip line track pulls and the butterfly grip!
Give the all clear when you’ve successfully moved on after a zip line, and you’ll avoid the unwanted green warning tag. One warning is all you get before you’re taken off the course, and no one wants to be that guy!
After a quick tour through the beginner and intermediate courses, we stepped up our game on the more advanced Tarzan. The suspended bridges were higher, the swings bigger, the zip lines longer, and the flyswatter loomed.
The sweat started to come out as we made our way up a little higher with each complex obstacle, and honestly you couldn’t wipe the smiles off of our faces. We came into the day pretty unaware of what we were getting ourselves into and were having a top notch adventure, working out muscles a few of us probably never knew were there.
After Tarzan, we took a quick break at base camp and weighed our options. Run through Tarzan again with more confidence or tackle Ontario’s most difficult aerial game/zip line course, Timberwolf! After sizing up the 70 foot rope ladder and being assured it was “the hardest part” of the course, we all took on the challenge.
On our slow ascent, we were told that at one time the course was completed by a female guide in a mere 7 minutes and 30 seconds! We want to meet that woman because it took all of us almost 45 minutes each to complete. Timberwolf was no joke. When you finally reach the top of the climb, you realize just how high you really are and appreciate just how epic and elaborate the setting really is.
As we battled the Timberwolf course, our communication skills picked up. Along with the guides, we were all cheering each other on and laughing our tails off as we got ourselves out of precarious position after precarious position.
You won’t know how far you can stretch until you’re 70 feet up reaching for a swinging log, believe that! Literally at no point during the day was anyone not having the time of their lives. This was living! We were pushing our bodies and our minds to the limit and coming out better for it in the end.
Treetop Trekking Ganaraska is part of a group of five parks, with the others located in Barrie, Huntsville, Brampton and Stouffville.
If you’re keen enough to try them all or want to experience Ganaraska time and time again with friends, family and colleagues—this is great for team building!—there is a season’s pass option where you’ll save bigtime.
Try it out as an individual, on a date, bring the family (kids as young as 9 can even take part), or come with an even larger group and share the laughs you’ll experience all day.