Ahhh, climbing: the stay-fit-in-summer “oh my god my legs are soooo lean” sport. Yeah, well, what if you have kids and don’t want them to chance breaking their heads open, or you just don’t have time to truck it down to the Mojave to find some red rocks? There’s a solution for that. Strap yourself in and climb a tree! Or, well, a ropes course!
Tahoe Treetop Adventure Parks combine harness climbing with agility, flexibility, and balance, offering obstacles both high and low above the forest floor for most ages (5 and up) and all ability levels (do note, there is a minimum height requirement). Picture it: rope bridges, climbing mesh, and things to jump on and swing between. And, there’s licensed guides to help you with the emotionally damaging struggle of letting your physical body dangle in mid-air if you miss that jump. I’m totally kidding. The courses really are challenging, yet completely doable.
There are three different locations, offering you the choice of where you’d like your family adventure to take place, and I’ve taken the liberty of adding a little color to help you decide which one to conquer!
The nitty gritty: Tackle 87 tree platforms in this gorgeous, secluded compound located within the 125-acre North Tahoe Regional Park. Fifty-four different features and 39 ziplines come together to create nine beginner-to-advanced courses at this location.
The added bonus: If you’re staying on the North Shore, whether or not you take on the adventure park, the Regional Park is a must see. Bring a frisbee and stick around for totally free frisbee-golf afterwards, or head to the dog park with your pooch! Then you can even stick around for a stranger’s high school baseball game on the field, if you dare. I’m sure they won’t mind the extra cheering from the stands.
The nitty gritty: Slightly larger than its Tahoe Vista sister location, this park features 97 tree platforms nestled among the towering pines and old-growth cedars. There are 27 ziplines and 60 different features, amounting to 10 courses total.
The added bonus: This location is great if multi-sport days are your thing. You can hit the beaches on the West-Shore-best-shore and bang out this ropes course all in one day. And if you love to hike or mountain bike, there are connections here to the Tahoe Rim Trail, a network of expansive single-track glory. Hike for as little or as long as you want. Heck, you can even link up to the PCT. We’ll see you in December when you get too cold to keep walkin’!
The nitty gritty: This park is smaller in size, at 16 tree platforms, 10 features, and six ziplines between the two courses. But that doesn’t mean it lacks a challenge! The stunners are a 50-foot alpine tower with climbing features and a “leap of faith” event.
The added bonus: One-stop-shop is the name of this game. Although this park is smaller than the others, the location is packed full of easily accessible family friendly options. You can explore the treetops, ride the Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows tram to hang by the pool, and have a great meal in the village (I recommend the Auld Dubliner!) all in one day. Plus, if you’re already staying at one of Squaw’s many accommodations, the minuscule commute is a no-brainer. If you get tired of all this, take the bike path down to the Truckee River for a little change of scenery. Info: tahoetreetop.com