Bright and early Friday morning, we embarked on the 2 hour journey to Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, GA. This is somewhere Darren began visiting as a child, and a place we’ve been to often since we began dating almost 13 years ago.
This time, we were going to Callaway Gardens with a specific purpose– to attend the TreeTop TweetUp with a group of other local bloggers! The official TweetUp wasn’t scheduled until Saturday. However, we wanted to make the most of our weekend together, so we arrived as early as possible.
This summer, many new attractions made their debut at this natural family retreat. One of those attractions was the TreeTop Adventure. We were invited to test out this all-new adventure course in the trees and see for ourselves how exhilarating it was. In case you aren’t familiar with this exciting new attraction, let me tell you a bit more about it.
Take your love of nature to new heights as you climb, leap, swing and whizz your way through a dizzying course of zip-lines, swinging bridges, nets, logs and other aerial challenges that are deftly woven into the natural forest behind the Virginia Hand Callaway Discovery Center. The trusty guides will instruct you, secure you in your harness and away you go on an adrenaline-charged adventure with a bird’s-eye view. Perfect for team-building and other group outings!
I finally got the opportunity to meet my oldest blogging buddy, Tiffany from Stuff Parents Need. She, her husband, and her beautiful daughter, Darah, drove down from Tennessee for the event. Additionally, there were some other fantastic bloggers there as well:
- Tiffany from Lattes and Life
- Jennifer from Mami 2 Mommy
- Desiree from Mommy Reporter
- Krystyn from Really, Are You Serious?
- Mandy from Atlanta Military Mom
- Meghan and Amy from Atlanta Moms on the Move
- Tonya from Traveler Mom
We all met up Saturday morning and got all of the release forms and paperwork filled out so that we could participate in the TreeTop Adventure. Then it was time to get our gear on and go through a short training course before heading up into the trees.
This was one of the hardest, most exhilarating, most amazing things I have done in a really long time. The course has almost 30 apparatuses, including 4 zip lines. I completed all except for 5 elements before I had to come down. The heat, dehydration, and nerves finally got to me, and I was scared that I would lose my lunch on everyone watching below. So, I made the difficult decision to come down.
Darren went through the entire course, and made it look easy of course. So, I watched him from the ground and cheered him on to the final zip line.
The TreeTop Adventure course challenged me and tested my body in many ways. I used muscles I didn’t even know existed. I found strength within that I didn’t know I had. Though I didn’t complete the course, every step I took and every element of the course I completed felt like a wonderful accomplishment. It was truly an amazing feeling.
I thought I would be scared of the course height, but surprisingly I wasn’t. I was scared of falling, but only because I had no idea how I would get back up again!
For several days after completing the TreeTop Adventure, my body was sore and bruised. The bruises were courtesy of the large tree at the end of the first zip line. Take my word that it is much easier to brake using your hand as they teach you to during the training session.
I highly recommend the TreeTop Adventure at Callaway Gardens as an adventure for everyone in your family (that is 54″ and taller). After going through the course myself, let me share a few tidbits I learned along the way.
- Pay attention during the training session. Though there are guides throughout the course, they are on the ground. You will need to know how to do everything yourself to ensure that you’re as safe as possible.
- Stay Hydrated. There is one water break on the course, and it’s a little over 2/3 of the way through. Before beginning, make sure to drink up so you don’t get dehydrated on the course.
- Dig Deep- You can do it! There might be a point on the course when you think you’re done and cannot go any further. You can do it, though. Remember that.
I will leave you with a short video of our experience at TreeTop Adventure. Darren filmed everything you will see from up on the course. It’s truly a firsthand look at what we experienced, and what you can participate in on your next visit to Callaway Gardens!
Disclosure: Callaway Gardens treated Darren and I to a night’s stay and an outing at the TreeTop Adventure. However, all opinions above are my own.