For my birthday this year my husband surprised me with a day trip filled with enough adventure to satisfy even the wildest child. We tripped it up to Ramblewild.
Ramblewild is an aerial tree to tree adventure course that is located in north western Massachusetts. At first I was intimidated looking at the trails and the hub from the ground, but quickly a ‘superwoman’ empowerment developed, and I was sure I could do all the courses. I was quickly brought back down to reality where the guides suggested starting with a green (blue if you’re feeling very ambitious) and that the average person only completes 3 trails in a day. Later I would understand why!
All of the eight trails start from a central location – the hub, where you pick your course and then begin the obstacles. After balancing, problem solving, and zipping through about a dozen obstacles per trail, you can hike back to the hub for a drink and take on another course. High wires, zip lines, balancing logs, ladders, cargo nets, and suspended bridges meander through the trees and cross 100 feet over a ravine.
At the very beginning we were introduced to the ‘fool proof’ double caliper system which allows visitors to adventure at their own pace, without the need for guides at every platform to help you. Only one can open while the other remains locked and attached, thereby eliminating the possibility of both calipers not being locked in. Craig luckily noticed his wasn’t working during our training and swapped out for a new set – that failure would have brought our trip to a quick end! Each person was responsible for clipping in and out the entire elevated trail. I always felt very safe, but I was always paying attention too. This isn’t the place you want to be distracted.
Each trail had at least one ‘fun’ and non-physically demanding element which typically involved a zip line of some sorts. Turns out it’s a lot of fun to saddle-up, skateboard, surf, and kayak through the tree tops!
By the time we reached the third or fourth obstacle I realized that yes this was fun, but wow, was I going to get a COMPLETE body workout. I used my legs, core, arms, and brain for every move I made the entire day.
Each trail is self-paced, and rarely did we end up catching up to someone, but when we did, we quickly bonded over shared tips on how to conquer the obstacles and encouragement for one another. For the most challenging elements, guides on the ground give tips and pointers. The ‘walking snake’ (image below) had me laughing tears watching Craig cross. The wiggling and waving back and forth was hysterical…until it was my turn. Wow! It was so much more challenging than it looked! This one took a lot of core work and balance.
I ended up taking only one digger that day. It happened quickly and I didn’t have the chance to catch myself, but fortunately the harness did its job and I was able to work my way back up and through the obstacle, leaving me with some very fresh rope burn bruises as a trophy for my efforts!
We left with our dignity intact but our bodies VERY sore and full of bruises that would take a couple of weeks to fade away!
I highly recommend taking a trip up to Ramblewild for a cross training challenge, fun with your kids (7 years old and up), or a new adventure. As an added bonus they are open all year round – anyone thinking about Christmas presents yet?!?
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