We’ve done tons of ziplines and I never get tired of them! Each one presents a different challenge because the trees, the distance and the slope are always different. My ideal backyard zip line ride goes between two trees and involves jumping off of a tree perch to start the ride.
Here’s the process on one we did recently. Jeff Beal (my partner in work and love) and I usually scope out the yard together, selecting the best trees for the zipline ride. When we narrow it down to one spot, we then set up a temporary zip line ride to make sure it will really work.
We both ride it many many times, adjusting it to come up with a fast fun and super safe ride. The temporary set up also lets me design the take-off tree perch.
A bit of quick photo shop and then I paint right on the photo. That way the family can get an idea of what I want to build! While I work on the tree perch, Jeff concentrates on installing the zipline. We use heavy-duty rescue-grade cable and trolleys so that adults as well as kids can ride the zipline. Here’s the perch almost done.
We did a similar zipline & perch in LA. I like how simple and sturdy this design is.
This zip line ride is fairly short but it’s thrilling! We’ve done zipline as short as 40 feet and as long as long as 160 feet. Here’s a link to a video of Jeff and I doing the test zipline for this project: http://vimeo.com/13233381
More on ziplines next week!