Have you ever wanted to climb trees like you did as a kid? Go Ape Treetop Adventures at Shelby Farms Park is the perfect adventure for you and your big kids (ages 10+, at least 55″ tall). Memphis mom Rachel Randall checked it out with her 6th grader and shared these awesome photos and tips. Thanks Rachel!
We were there for 3 hours and 15 minutes. The orientation took an hour. They take safety very seriously. It was 30 minutes of getting our harnesses put on and adjusted and learning how to use them, and then 30 minutes at Station 1 (which is very small and easy) learning the rules and attaching to the different kinds of things we would encounter on the course. They take safety very seriously. You have two lines always attached, along with a stop rope on the ladders. It was very simple to figure out how to work the safety lines and attach them. You do it probably 100 times over the course, so it becomes second nature.
It took us 2 hours and 15 minutes to do Stations 2-6. Being Saturday, it was pretty busy, so early on in the course we would have to wait a few minutes to do things, but it thinned out quickly. My son and I are both runners and in good shape, so I think 2 to 2.5 hours after the hour orientation is a good time estimate.
The zip lines are the easy, fun part. To get to the zip lines, you are crossing all kinds of swinging bridges, tight ropes, rings, and other contraptions that are high in the air. It was definitely difficult, but we were also strapped into a harness, so you could just hang and pull yourself across.
There were a lot of crossings up high, six zip lines, and two Tarzan swings. The course is very well marked and everyone goes in the same order and direction the entire time. There is always staff on the ground below ready to help, direct, or correct rules violators quickly!
- Don’t go if you’re scared of heights.
- Going to the bathroom is a pain and difficult once you’ve actually started the course. Go before hand, and make sure kids with you do too.
- Wear comfortable clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty. You end up in dirt on the zip line landings. I wish I’d worn longer shorts because the harness rubbed my legs.
- I used my running backpack and kept my phone and keys in there. You could leave them at the check-in place if you wanted. Most people wore one of those drawstring type backpacks. A fanny pack wouldn’t work because the harness goes around your waist.
- They have water and paper cups at the start of every station.
My son was much braver than I was. We had a BLAST! It’s definitely a workout, and you get your money’s worth for sure.
Go Ape Treetop Adventure
Shelby Farms Park
open March – October
Book online. Ages 16+: $57 (plus tax), children ages 10-15: $37 (plus tax). Children must be supervised by a participating adult. One adult can supervise two children.
Rachel Randall is an avid runner, mom to two boys and a music teacher at Hutchison School.