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Ever Gone Zip-Lining?


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My wife and I just got back from a brief trip to Costa Rica . . . and, yes, I did note the 100-degree temperature difference. :eek:


One of the highlights of our trip was zip-lining through the "dry forest." First, I fully acknowledge being a coward. Heights give me the willies, and even climbing a tall ladder creeps me out. When I watch mountain climbers on TV, my palms get sweaty and I sometimes throw up in my mouth a little. When I buy shoes I take them to the cobbler to cut down the heels. I hate heights.


So, it was with a little trepidation that I signed up to go zip-lining.


But, I knew I might never again have the opportunity, so I hopped on the bus with a group of about 20 others, including my wife, and headed off to Witch's Rock. Upon arrival, I saw a cable stretched across a canyon. The cable was probably 500-600 feet long. "Ah," I thought, "that must be a cable for a more advanced run. Glad I'm a beginner."


A group of about a dozen guys helped us into our harnesses, gave us leather gloves, and fitted us for helmets. These young gents were very serious and focused on making sure everyone's equipment was correctly fitted. Among the turistas there was some joking. I remained silent, for I alone understood the gravity of the situation.


As I had imagined this endeavor in days leading up to it, my mind's eye saw a series of short runs at treetop level--they were quick and invigorating, but I imagined them to be confidence-inspiring and unintimidating. Sort of like going on a "scary" amusement park ride.


So much for the mind's eye. After a brief demonstration of how to get attached to the cable and how to brake, we were led . . . to . . . the . . . [gulp] . . . cable I had spied when we pulled into the parking lot. Yep, that mama was at least 500 or 600 feet long and stretched over a goddamned canyon! Holy, Holy Mother of God!


Now my palms were sweating. My heart was pounding. My mind was reeling--"Sweet Jesus, I promise never to sin again if you just let me survive this. In fact, Dear Lord, I wouldn't mind if you smote this cable right now, before anyone gets hooked up to it. It would be a good story to tell over cocktails, Oh Mighty and All-Seeing Creator."


But, no, the Lord did not smite the cable. One of the instructors climbed the platform, clipped himself in, and went flying . . . across that friggin' canyon! There were a couple of victims . . . er, patrons, who went ahead of me. Then, it was my turn.


I climbed up the ladder with apparent self-assurance, hoping no one would spot the wet patch on the front of my shorts. Clipped in. Left hand on webbing. Right hand in back, surrounding cable. "Saint Peter . . . I will see you in a few moments."


A brief push, and away I went. "Holy crap! I'm gonna die . . . I'm gonna die. Hey, wait. This is fast . . . and it's fun!! Yee hah!!! I am the bravest man to ever walk the Earth. I fly with the eagles."


Wow, it was great! I loved it. Who else here has done this?

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Done it once... :eek:


Have you ever done the sling shot thing at Royal Gorge?


Surely you jest. I walked across that bridge . . . but just barely. Couldn't even get near the edge.

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I love doing that, though I was scared half to death the first time. Especially since it wasn't a professional place and had just been finished a month ago. They gave us one leather garden glove for a brake hand. The runs were very long, and the drops were at least 700' down.


These runs were so long that you didn't make it all the way up to the next tree. You had to grab the cable, flip around, and arm-over-arm it.


I took these when we did it outside Jaco in Costa Rica:











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Christine and I tried it in Costa Rica too. Total blast!

Gosh, I can't believe that trip was 5 years ago...gotta get back!











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Mark, that looks like the same one we took when Jamie and I were in Costa Rica 5 years ago at Christmas/New Year.


What an absolute blast that was!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Same story here:


Tried it in Costa Rica (I think we were in Playa Flamingo at that point, but it probably was around Manuel Antonio/Quepos) a few years ago.


To me, it was just a touristy thing to do. It was a nice way to view the scenery. I know my father thought it was a bit more frightening than I did (when going head down anyway) but I never felt at risk.


I'd probably do it again when visiting CR with someone that hasn't been before.

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As a life member of the 101 Abn, I plead guilty. :dopeslap:


But.........most of those jumps were out of a C-119, and I was damn happy to get outta that pos. :grin:

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You people probably jump out of perfectly good airplanes too. :grin::dopeslap:




I have the same number of good chutes as I do jumps.










That was enough.

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You people probably jump out of perfectly good airplanes too.

That's a statement that people seem to make all the time - but have you ever actually *seen* one of the planes used for skydiving?

I don't know that 'perfectly good' is a very apt description - "barely airworthy" is more like it.

Visualize a beat up old VW microbus with no side door, that has wings tied to the roof with clothesline, and you'll get a good idea...


Quite frankly, jumping out the side with a chute seems safer than trying to stay onboard and land in it...

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Have you ever been in a C-119 used for jump school at Ft. Benning? Now that would scare ya far more than a sky diving aircraft. :grin:


At least it did me and all others I was in jump school with. :dopeslap:

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When I was growing up, my parents put up a zip line in the vacant lot next door. The scenery wasn't as spectacular and the line itself was shorter, but we had fun with it.

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