Letters

Letters 05-23-2016

Examine The Priorities Are you disgusted about closing schools, crumbling roads and bridges, and cuts everywhere? Investigate funding priorities of legislators. In 1985 at the request of President Reagan, Grover Norquist founded Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). For 30 years Norquist asked every federal and state candidate and incumbent to sign the pledge to vote against any increase in taxes. The cost of living has risen significantly since 1985; think houses, cars, health care, college, etc...

Make TC A Community For Children Let’s be that town that invests in children actively getting themselves to school in all of our neighborhoods. Let’s be that town that supports active, healthy, ready-to-learn children in all of our neighborhoods...

Where Are Real Christian Politicians? As a practicing Christian, I was very disappointed with the Rev. Dr. William C. Myers statements concerning the current presidential primaries (May 8). Instead of using the opportunity to share the message of Christ, he focused on Old Testament prophecies. Christ gave us a new commandment: to love one another...

Not A Great Plant Pick As outreach specialist for the Northwest Michigan Invasive Species Network and a citizen concerned about the health of our region’s natural areas, I was disappointed by the recent “Listen to the Local Experts” feature. When asked for their “best native plant pick,” three of the four garden centers referenced non-native plants including myrtle, which is incredibly invasive...

Truth About Plants Your feature, “listen to the local experts” contains an error that is not helpful for the birds and butterflies that try to live in northwest Michigan. Myrtle is not a native plant. The plant is also known as vinca and periwinkle...

Ask the Real Plant Experts This letter is written to express my serious concern about a recent “Listen To Your Local Experts” article where local nurseries suggested their favorite native plant. Three of the four suggested non-native plants and one suggested is an invasive and cause of serious damage to Michigan native plants in the woods. The article is both sad and alarming...

My Plant Picks In last week’s featured article “Listen to the Local Experts,” I was shocked at the responses from the local “experts” to the question about best native plant pick. Of the four “experts” two were completely wrong and one acknowledged that their pick, gingko tree, was from East Asia, only one responded with an excellent native plant, the serviceberry tree...

NOTE: Thank you to TC-based Eagle Eye Drone Service for the cover photo, taken high over Sixth Street in Traverse City.

Home · Articles · News · Features · Zip!!!
. . . .

Zip!!!

Mike Terrell - June 11th, 2012  
Wildwood Rush lives up to its name

Perched on the edge of a platform 40-some feet in the air wrapped around a sturdy pine tree, my 69-year-old knees were quivering as much as nearby aspen trees.

I was just starting my zip line canopy tour in the high hills above Boyne City and Young State Park at Wildwood Rush. I missed the first couple of lower to the ground zip lines, which the three other people doing the tour said were a little easier. You didn’t have to step off a platform. A running start on the ground got you going.

As I stood there holding tightly to my harness, hands sweating, one of our guides, Andrea Westrick, said, “Just sit down and go.”

She was right. When you sat down into the harness you are wearing instead of jumping off the platform, it was much easier. There was no momentary drop or sinking feeling. You just took off down the line feeling secure and elated. It was a thrill and indeed a rush, but a good one.

A BLAST

Once over the initial uncertainty of flying through the treetops and walking across narrow rope ladders in high the trees, it was a blast.

My companions, a couple from Indiana and a local Boyne City resident, had never done a zip line tour before and were elated with the experience. Not unlike me, heights made the wife Laura a little nervous.

“It was a gut check on that first platform, but once you lift off, the thrill takes over any trepidation. I’m really enjoying this,” she enthused. We had reached the fourth zip line on our tour.

At the fifth station she saw a couple of deer below in the valley while crossing on the zip line, which the guides said is fairly frequent with quiet, smaller groups.

“No ‘wee, wee, weeing,’ like the little pig in the Geico commercials,” laughed guide Wesley Ricker.

There are nine stations in all on a full tour, which takes about two-and-a-half to three hours to complete. I have done a couple of other zip line tours in the Midwest, and there is nothing else like this around the Great Lakes. More in line with western zip line tours, it’s a canopy tour as well. You are high in the trees, but never off of a safety line securing you to cables. It’s a very safe experience.

MILE-AND-A-HALF TOUR

There are five “sky” bridges connecting the nine zip lines, spanning more than a mile-and-a-half tour over the ridges and through the trees. Jaw-dropping views of Lake Charlevoix can be seen from five of the tree platforms. It’s also an eco-friendly tour as the guides clue you in to the trees and foliage around you. All cables are secured to trees in a non-lethal way so as not to damage them.

There is over 5,000 feet of zip lines, the longest being 1,200 feet, which is the last line. You reach speeds up to 40 mph racing down the wire from a high ridge to a twostory platform at the bottom of the hill. A reliable braking system slows you down as you reach the platform, and a guide is there to help steady you as you land.

Reservations are required for the canopy tours, which are available seven days a week through October. With all the hardwood trees in the area, fall would be a surreal experience flying through the colorful foliage.

No reservations are required for single rides on the 1,200 foot Triple Zip Line, which is also the one that ends the canopy tour. It’s open daily on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. The full canopy tour is $75 per person, and the Triple Zip is $20 for one ride and $35 for three.

For more information and reservations you can log onto www.wildwoodrush.com.

I can’t wait to go again.

 
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