Bretton Woods Canopy Tour
You may have figured out by now that I have a soft spot for zip lines and canopy tours. I have never met one I didn’t like, but it takes something really special to rank near the top of my list. Happily, the Bretton Woods Canopy Tour has earned a place with the very best.
Bretton Woods is one of the last remaining classic New England resorts. If location is everything, they have everything and then some. With a beautiful forested ski resort to provide civilized outdoor fun and the Mount Washington range just across the valley for a challenge, this place has a great feel to it. But let’s get to the canopy tour.
After a very scenic lift ride, the tour starts with a short walk through a fragrant forest. Ground school is comprehensive but not overly dramatic and the staff really seems to love what they do. I was impressed not only by the staff’s enthusiasm, but also by their knowledge for the land we were enjoying.
The course is quite impressive, dropping about 1,000 vertical feet over the 3 hour tour. It features some great high bridges, a couple of fun rappels and 9 amazing zip lines. At some points, the course is as high as 70′ above the forest floor, which is higher than most and a lot of fun. The zip lines range from 120′ to a jaw dropping 830′. Some of the zips get really high (I was told over 150′) and all of them offer outstanding views. The zips are not face-distorting fast, but that’s OK because you have time to take it all in. One thing I really like about the course is that you are an active participant. It’s not all on auto-pilot like some over produced courses so you feel more engaged. I loved every minute of it!
As I mentioned before, the guides really love their environment and take pride in showing it off. They offered a lot of interesting facts about the surrounding landscape and they definitely added to my enjoyment of the experience. It was a ton of fun, but educational too in a low-key kind of way. All too often people get caught up in the technical details of a canopy tour and forget to enjoy the natural setting around them. I appreciated that they took the time to allow us to soak it all in because the scenery is stunning.
The entire Mount Washington region is a wonderland for outdoor enthusiasts so you could easily spend a few days, or even weeks and never be bored. Rest assured, if you can do it outside, you can do it here (unless you need an ocean to get your jollys). The hiking and climbing selections are endless and world-class. Be aware, these are some big mountains with potentially nasty weather. Be prepared if you go to the backcountry, which I recommend highly.
Reservations are required for the canopy tour. Visit http://brettonwoods.com/activities/canopy_tour/overview or call 603-278-4947 to reserve your spot 7 days in advance. The price is $110 retail or $99 if you are staying at the resort. If you have never experienced a traditional New England resort hotel, put a crowbar in your wallet and go for it. Yes, you will get sticker shock, but it is worth it to be transported to a simpler time for at least one night.
All I can say is GO! You’ll love it.