Thu, 15 Aug 2013 21:28:11 GMT — COLUMBIA (WACH) -- On your next trip to Columbia's Riverbanks Zoo and Gardens you'll see people zipping over the river and through the woods. The zoo's newest attraction Zip the Zoo is opening this week. The zip line has two courses a zoo course for beginners and the river course for the daredevils in your family. The zoo course has four zips and tops out at 250 feet. The river course gives you a birds eye view of the zoo, you'll start off with two short zips then you'll tackle the rickety bridge. "It adds another obstacle to the course which actually makes it a little bit more fun. The builders build it that way so you get the whole experience of tunneling through then finally just nailing the river," said Will Kramer. Zipping across the river takes about thirty seconds and you can reach an average speed of 35 miles an hour. Instead of the normal hand breaking system most zip lines use, the riverbanks zoo uses a vector gravity system where you can glide into the landing spot just like Peter Pan. "A simple gravity system where you literally just step out and the way its going to come in nice and easy like Peter Pan we've been told. Its going to break you nice and slow all the way to the end," adds Kramer. Since June the zip guides having been working ten hour days, learning, how to rescue anyone should they need assistance while on the course, tuning the lines to the 70-250 pound weight limit and practicing proper safety techniques. "For guest safety we use another double connection, where they're connected by one of out trolleys and then connected to the guide as well, so you're never going to be unclipped," said Kramer. The zip line is just one of the several new attractions coming to the zoo. Theyre planning to open a splash pad; theyll be bringing in new animals, including the return of sea lions. The entire project should be complete by 2016.
WACH WACHFox provides coverage of news, sports, weather and local events in the Columbia, South Carolina area, including Lexington, Elgin, Cayce, Chapin, Peak, Blythewood, Newberry, Camden, Mulberry, Sumter, Eastover, Aiken, and Orangeburg, SC.