Updated: Jun 6
Calling adventurers and tree huggers to this unique experience for an unforgettable memory
The Treetop Trek Experience Aerial Adventures
As an adventurous family living in the area, I’m embarrassed to admit it took us years to cross this one off our bucket list! I was hesitant for a few reasons: price and ability. The zoo gives you options for your experience, (I found their web site confusing - they list the course and the ability level separately) and I wanted to pick the most amazing option - but wasn’t sure if just an average mom (like me) could really do all of the courses - or if they would be too hard for me. I was pretty sure my boys would be fine with any/ all treks, but part of my and goal was to share this together and I did not want to be left in the dust or holding back the boys from excelling.
One of my very best friends gifted us with the experience as a family Christmas present. We have been trying to focus more on experiences and less on things. This was an incredible gift, and we were so appreciative! I’d like to share this as a recommendation 😊
So first let me say we chose the Challenge Reloaded/ Intermediate course, and it was a great fit for our family! My photos are based on this experience, however I include the other courses as I wanted to fully understand what I was looking at, and hope to help you too.
~~~~ Before & During our adventure ~~~~
I can’t go any farther without commending the Brevard Zoo for it’s design and display. Animal exhibits are well laid out, family friendly and inviting. Shaded walkways loop you around like a flower pattern coming back to the center circle for each continent. Offering some of the most unique experiences you can have at a zoo, you can kayak through Africa, feed the giraffes, ride a train through the Congo, and of course – Zipline. I have come here yearly on field trips with my students and always had a positive experience. We typically attend each year as a family and events like Boo at the Zoo are dear to our memory bank. Down below I will compare favorite zoos, however – I will say before going on: If you are anywhere in the vicinity this is a must see!
Back to our Ziplining: A zoo pass is not actually included in your adventure day. I will also confess that there is a loop that is optional with the challenge course. This loop is really for the adventurous at heart. It comes toward the end of the tree top canopy walk and after watching my son ride a rope into a spiderweb where he had to unhook his harness and climb across to the next obstacle - I opted to wait for them on the platform they would circle back around to. I could see them making their way through the five obstacles I passed on. In all honesty, I probably could have done it had been the beginning of the course but I was definitely wearing down a couple hours in. My arms were tired. My legs were tired. I felt good, but not good enough to plunge into a big web and side walk to a plank good.
~~~ After a few warm ups you take this route! ~~~~
Ok let’s get to the questions/ concerns:
Much of this info is taken from the Brevard Zoo webiste, directly under frequently asked questions.
I also called the Zoo to clarify questions a few times at: (321) 254-9453.
What are my options?
Maximum weight is 250 lbs as long as you can fit into a harness (maximum of 48” waist and 26” leg openings) and you are physically capable of such activity.
Zip Only at least 56” tall - The fun and excitement of Treetop Trek but a quicker, easier package. Nine rides around the Zoo at heights over 50 feet. This course takes between 45 minutes and two hours to complete, depending on your skill set, time of day and the number of guests on the course.
Beginner at least 54” tall Canopy Walk - This is an introductory course where visitors enjoy nature and part of the Zoo while walking 20 feet above the ground. Also included in the course are 21 elements and two zip lines. This course takes between 45 minutes and two hours to complete, depending on your skill set, time of day and the number of guests on the course.
Intermediate at least 56” tall – Challenge Reloaded - This course includes Canopy Walk plus multiple high-stakes elements and large zip lines at 40 feet above the ground. This course is for visitors at least 56” tall with a reach of 72″ needed. Fly more than 600 feet across the wetlands and zip by alligators. This course takes between 90 minutes and three hours to complete, depending on your skill set, time of day and the number of guests on the course. Last admission is 3:00 pm.
Expert – This trek is purchased online as the Challenge Course online and upgraded upon arrival - This is course includes Challenge Reloaded plus several more challenging feature with a total of 41 elements and 14 zip lines! This is definitely our most physically grueling course, but it’s also the most rewarding. This course takes between 90 minutes and three hours to complete, depending on your skill set, time of day and the number of guests on the course. Last admission is 3:00 pm.
Lil Trekkers - 36″-60” tall - For the young ones, the Chutes & Ladders course includes 22 elements such as bridges, tightropes and zip lines. This course takes at least 45 minutes to complete.
If it’s a day family adventure you are looking for – cross the last two off your list. Expert is for those who have been doing this course and want to add more with the Black Diamond.
How much is it anyway?
Each of the courses builds on the prior course, and as they get harder, you stay on longer, which also gets more expensive. The easier courses are less expensive.
Chutes and Ladders / Lil Trekkers - $19.95 Canopy Walk / Beginner $34.95 Challenge Reloaded / Intermediate $54.95 Black Diamond / Expert $69.95 Zip Only $44.95
How do I order?
For Black Diamond, reserve a Challenge Reloaded ticket online and then upgrade upon arrival.
Trek accepts cash, MasterCard, Visa and American Express credit cards, and traveler’s checks.
What if I can’t do it?
You may exit the course at any time. We actually saw a friend at the end who got off early because she felt overheated. No pressure, no stress. No refund.
What if I need a break?
There is a “natural” break in the middle of the Challenge Reloaded course where guests return to the ground before ascending again. This is a great time to take a short break, use the restroom
Are you afraid of heights?
Unless you are trying to practice facing your fears this is probably not the place for you! They were times that you go up high, 40 feett high!
What should I wear:
Casual clothes that you can move in.
You will be bending and climbing.
I’d avoid jeans or anything too bulky as you are tightly fitted into the harness.
Sneakers are a must!
Where will you keep your water? Can you hook it on a buckle or fit in a pocket? They do sell water bags that attach for $3.00/ each, however if you have a solution for this you can save those dollars!
How long does it really take?
The challenge course legitimately took us three hours to complete. Most of that time we were in the front of the line so we were setting our own pace. You still have to wait for the person in front of you to clear a course before you enter.
How strenuous is it?
This was more work than I anticipated! I did enjoy going up the ladders and going across the zip line. I did not know there would also be a lot of bending and ducking as well as just dragging along your harness buckle and keeping yourself properly positioned. That being said my legs were sore the next day! Toward the end, when the option came to complete the challenge loop or wait on the platform, I was feeling pretty tired. Had they offered that closer toward the beginning when I still had a ton of energy I would have probably gone for it! Maybe I will be able to work up to that :-)
It’s good to have goals!
But it rains a lot in Florida – how will that impact my day?
Treetop Trek does close at times due to severe weather, especially in the summer. Severe weather can include winds exceeding 25 mph, tropical and/or hurricane storm conditions, lightning and thunder. When severe weather such as lightning and thunder strikes, participants on the courses will be brought down to ground level, and all course activity will be suspended for a full 30 minutes. If no additional thunder is heard after 30 minutes, guests are allowed to resume course activity. If thunder continues, the course will remain closed. No refunds or rain checks will be offered if Treetop Trek is closed due to severe weather.
Is it worth it?
We rate it 5 stars and a definite YES!
Our personal experience:
As a first timer, I was happy with the presentation. Upon arrival they walk you through the safety equipment and you do a practice zip. The treetop trek staff is very helpful and they have a great system for explaining how all the pieces work. I was relieved to practice working the harness, claw clips and gloves before ever stepping onto the course. Is there a way to have smaller gloves for smaller hands? That could be my only recommendation. There are water refill stations up in the platforms. That also made me feel better, easing some of my worry for "can I do it?" - By the way - YES!
35 elements and 14 zip lines!
Ok admittedly, I skipped a few...
I was very impressed with how attentive staff is. From down below the trees they will wait, encourage, and direct if necessary. My youngest son (16) who insisted on wearing his crocs even though I asked him to wear sneakers was getting ready to go on the first big zip line. There is a series of ladders that just keeps climbing to a higher platform until you are ready to zip across! One of the attendants asked him if he'd prefer some sneakers and went and got him a pair of sneakers he could wear as a precaution. I was very appreciative as was he, this was so helpful! The attendant climbed up and gave them to him. They were in good shape, looking new. We returned them at the end. Total win.
During our trek we saw some bears, monkeys, and giraffes. We ziplined over the gators. This view gives you a totally different perspective of the zoo. This is a work out that makes your exercise fun and scenic. You wear all the safety gear which is a little awkward to operate at first. It gets easier, but for me the helmet was hot and bothersome. I probably should have tied my hair back or something to make it less annoying - safety first!!
The beginning is pretty easy. It gradually gets harder. You need more upper body strength. I had to walk my way across a series of three vertically hanging nets, which felt like "walking a hanging and mobile plank", kind of like swings. I felt a little unsure of myself. With each step I felt triumphant. It took me a while. My oldest behind me was cheering me on. I thought, "wow does everyone really cross this with no problem?" Then comes a section where you can veer left or right. I hung in the middle and caught my breath, and took pictures of my kids who veered left - over to the spider web. I enjoyed watching them through the trees playing in the ropes and riding the balls across the obstacles. The group behind us was coming up behind me and we were able to maneuver the clips so they could pass me, and I could stay on the platform and wait for my family to come back. Their party did split as a few went ahead, two did they challenge course option, and one waited by where I was.
The last section after the really challenging cluster is a series of zip lines to the end. At this point we were really moving quickly. I feel like it took us a while to get into the rhythm of dragging your clip along the line, repositioning as needed, maneuvering the clip and making sure your harness is attached. The final zip lines restore your sense of life and adventure. Now it is happening almost automatically. You remember how good it is to be alive as you are zooming across the course and making your way back.
~~ This obstacle on the left is the walk the plank mentioned above - this is my happy face making it to the other side~~
My daughter who is expecting was not able to participate, so we missed her on this Mother’s Day splurge. My girlfriend Loren (THANK YOU LOREN) gave us the tickets for Christmas. I've been trying to focus on less things and more quality time as a theme in my life (yes unfortunately due to crazy schedules and my own questions it took from Christmas to Mother’s Day to book our excursion).
~~ See the spider web rope back there? Whew!!!~~
For years we were National Wildlife members and toured every zoo we could get to.
We love the National Zoo in DC and the San Diego Zoo in Cali.
But my 2 favorite Zoos in the country are the Central Park Zoo and the Brevard Zoo.
Why? They are smaller compact spaces where you feel closer to the animals. These are not as spread out as some of the bigger zoos we love. They feel more intimate and personal. The Brevard Zoo has the most amazing Paws On section which is perfect for smaller children. While I am a budget excursionist, I am also a most bang for your buck kind of girl. This is a great use of your time and money and feels great.
~~~ San Diego Zoo with Polar Bears and National Zoo with Pandas ~~~
Our ziplining videos and memories are also added on Tic Toc!
Search savvysinglemamatravels and you can see all of this as it was happening.
Thank you for visiting, please feel free to leave comments and feedback!
Wishing you wonderful travels where ever your journey takes you :-)
~ Mz. Savvy