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It was news to us. We did­n’t know our son Kaleb was scared of heights until we rode the Fer­ris wheel at Cal­i­for­nia Adven­ture. When our pod start­ed climb­ing and sway­ing, he threw him­self on the floor and hid his head between his father’s knees. No amount of reas­sur­ing could get him to look around.

When I learned about “Ziplines at Pacif­ic Crest” in Wright­wood, I thought it would be the per­fect fam­i­ly day trip from Los Ange­les for him to con­quer his fear. Lit­tle did I know that I had some lin­ger­ing fear of my own.

Wright­wood’s two zipline cours­es wind their way through the Ange­les Nation­al For­est, tak­ing rid­ers to speeds reach­ing 55 mph and heights that brush the tops of trees at 300 feet. There are Indi­ana Jones-style sky bridges that con­nect perch­es built into the trees. There’s also some­thing called “the leap of faith,” but more on that later.

We packed into an SUV with Kon­rad, who reas­sured us that he had his license in “haz­ardous dri­ving” as our vehi­cle climbed the rocky ter­rain to our extreme fam­i­ly trip. Our guides, Adam Bon­de­s­on and Step­fanie Alfon­so, gave us a prac­tice run through in “ground school,” though we were nowhere near the ground as we sailed down the short runs to test out our gloved-hand stop­ping tech­niques. Once we felt com­fort­able, we walked to our start­ing plat­form 100 feet above the ground. As we took flight, sit­ting in the swings that sup­port­ed our booties, we gazed over a riv­er of trees between two moun­tains. Each land­ing plat­form was also a launch­ing pad, and we zipped our way like Tarzan and Jane through the emer­ald forest.

At the end of our fam­i­ly adven­ture, we had to free fall 60 feet to our con­nect­ing flight – “the leap of faith.” I told Step­fanie that I’d go first. After all, I’m the mom and I need­ed to set a good exam­ple. I stood at the edge of the wood­en plat­form and willed my feet to step off. I held the wire between my gloved hands and tried to wrap my head around Step­fanie’s instruc­tions to pull up instead of down as my body plunged. I could­n’t do it, and I heard my son snick­er­ing behind me. “Are you scared?” he asked. No, I just could­n’t make my body move. Step­fanie point­ed to some­thing and I looked. As I fol­lowed her gaze, she shoved and I dropped, scream­ing and laugh­ing, feel­ing fool­ish and hap­py as my heart raced into my throat. Kaleb stepped off with­out hes­i­ta­tion. He must have got­ten over his fear of heights.


See video of the fun below:



Getting There

From their website:

Ziplines at Pacif­ic Crest is locat­ed in the San Gabriel Moun­tains, just 75 miles from Los Ange­les and Orange Coun­ty. We are right next to Moun­tain High Resort and the town of Wright­wood. Guest should arrive at our Wel­come Cen­ter, where we’ll gear up and get ready to go. Then we jump in a shut­tle, turn on some rockin’ music, and head out to our zipline courses—you’ve nev­er expe­ri­enced adven­ture like this before!

Our wel­come cen­ter is locat­ed at: 6014 Park Dri­ve Wright­wood, CA 92397