If you've got an adventurous family and are visiting Yorkshire, then don't miss one of the UK's most exciting treetop adventure, ropes and zipwire courses at 'Go Ape Adventure' in North Yorkshire's Dalby Forest. The ultimate place for all ages to flex their adventurous spirit and test themselves mentally and physically with over 100 elevated platforms connecting 200m+ zip wires to a huge variety of rope ladders, wobbly bridges and cargo-nets.
Just like we found on our adventure at Cannock Chase's Go Ape. Safety is obviously of paramount importance at all Go Apes. The 'Double Clip' system on the Tree Top Adventures see you attached to an upper wire, belay cable, with lanyards (ropes and carabiners). Leaving you confident that if you fell, you'd be caught by the safety wire. Cleverly this never feels it's at the expense of some adrenaline inducing leaps, zip wires, climbs.
For those visiting with similar aged, adventurous younger children, we'd recommend the Tree Top Junior (for those over 1m). With its comprehensive clip in system, much like Voss Active's course in Norway, it's incredibly safe and allows little ones to enjoy the two courses before the excellent final zip wires. Alongside the excellent variety on both sides of the Tree Top Junior course, you can also try to create your own excitement by trying these:-
1. The Water Challenge (take a cup of water with you on the course without spilling a drop)
2. The Backwards Challenge (complete the whole course backwards including zip wires!)
3. The 45sec Challenge (a virtual run around the treetops in complete safety... )
For those visiting with similar aged, adventurous older children, we'd recommend the TreeTop Adventures course. There's a superb mix of skills required in the extreme sections of the TreeTop Adventures (for those over 1.40m high) including giant cargo nets and huge zip wires.... or you can take the easier route through the 6 sections of the high ropes course.
We ought to add that the whole wooded area is hugely atmospheric and clearly well made and serviced! It just had the feeling of a slick operation with families everywhere having fun
With miles of walking and biking trails taking in Staindale Lake, Adderstone and the Bridestones, there are plenty of sights to see from the ground too and more than one way to make it a whole day out for accompanying family.
Easily accessed 'non participant' trails snake across the hillsides allowing you to feel part of the adventure... even if you're not the one high up in the trees! Perfectly accessible for toddlers to grandparents (like ours), you'll soon find yourself strolling up pine scented forest walks to get the very best views of the start and ends of zip wires... or perhaps even see your family flying overhead into the giant cargo nets!
During one of our road schooling lessons, it was interesting to discover that the first High Ropes courses were built by the ancient Greeks to train their military however newer high ropes courses actually owe their existence to Georges Herbert (a French Naval officer).
Georges Herbert realised the health, social and team benefits of rope work on ships. But our girls simply love them and we see them as a fun and exciting way to get everyone outdoors and get some exercise as it helps your cardio vascular fitness / upper body strength!
Although there's often a few stomach churning moments, we also believe they're great confidence builders for kids too. A chance to test their skills and nerve by overcoming an aerial obstacle course in the great outdoors.
Just like some of our Norway Adventures below., we love enjoying these family challenges and experiences together. So with our sturdy boots being put to good use within seconds, the adrenalin was certainly pumping as we considered how best to tackle the extreme obstacles on this course.
Even though we've enjoyed a number of high ropes experiences across Europe including at Voss Active (Norway) , Birmingham's Go Ape & Arcachon (France). There's always new extreme obstacles to conquer..... but none more so than that gigantic cargo net which was perhaps the girl's absolute highlight from the whole experience.
An experience that took us nearly 3 hours but you could easily spend a full day here... For us, the biggest positive (along with the 'backwards challenge'....) was the family feel and constant sounds of laughter ... It really is a park full of smiling happy faces!
However the wider Dalby Forest has plenty more to offer too.... Adventure Playgrounds, Visitor Centres, Gruffalo Trails, MTB Trails and much more.... so hopefully we'll find a reason to return soon and discover more of this fantastic part of North Yorkshire!!!
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