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Skyline’s Zoom Zipline takes off

17 April, 2014

Skyline’s Zoom Zipline takes off

Skyline Rotorua’s much anticipated gravity-ride activity, Zoom Zipline, is expected to open to the public this Easter Weekend, with the official launch taking place on Tuesday April 29.

The new attraction, which involves a thrilling high-speed twin zipline that descends 385 metres down the side of Mt Ngongotaha, now also includes a unique 10 metre Quickjump system which sees guests “freefall” from the landing platform following their zipline ride.

The innovative system is operated by Canadian company Zoom Ziplines, in partnership with Skyline. The company has already designed and built systems in Canada, the USA, Europe, Asia and the Caribbean, with Skyline Rotorua’s ride a first for the South Pacific.

Zoom Ziplines Owner Manager, Ron Betts, says the addition of the Quickjump is the first time the system has been used in conjunction with the zipline. It involves guests being harnessed to a single line and “freefalling” before a special breaking system ensures a soft landing.

“After the rush of zooming past the scenery on the zipline, guests can experience a secondary rush of the Quickjump which is very controlled and safe, but definitely gets the heart pumping,” says Mr Betts.

A small “gang plank” has been added to the zipline’s landing platform for guests to step out on, before they jump in between mature Redwood trees and land safely on the ground below.

“Zoom Ziplines activities always involve specially trained guides and strict safety measures, however, those that would rather not take that ‘leap of faith’ are welcome to take the more conventional way down via the stairs and then catch the chairlift back to the top,” says Mr Betts.

Mr Betts says the Zoom Zipline sees guests wear specially made full-body harnesses, as opposed to waist-only, to ensure both the safety and comfort of riders.

“The patented harnesses and unique automated braking system, Zipstop, sets us apart in that riders don’t have to do anything but enjoy the ride and the stunning scenery. Safety is paramount to us.”

Zipstop is an automated braking system that ensures a smooth ride and soft ending when the trolley comes in contact with a “catchblock” that engages a three to one rope system, bringing the ride to a halt.

The launch system is also unique in that it is completely operated by trained guides, with guests only released after official safety checks between guides at the bottom and the top of the zipline.

Mr Betts says although the actual build has only taken a few months, years of planning has gone into bringing the Zoom Zipline to life.

Mr Betts hit the ground running when he arrived from Canada on March 8 – his first time in Rotorua, and on the Luge, and only his second time in New Zealand. He will be joined by his wife, Lora, onApril 24 - just in time for the official Zoom Zipline opening on April 29 which will be attended by Associate Tourism Minister Todd McClay and Mayor Steve Chadwick.

Zoom Zipline is suitable for children and adults, with a minimum weight of 27 kilograms and a maximum of 125 kilograms.


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