Anderson/Madison County Visitors Blog
The sun was bright, the air was warm, and the breeze made the tower sway a little. As I stood near the edge I was more nervous than I thought I would be. It felt so high. I took a deep breath, said a quick prayer, and went flying through the air.
I was at White River Zip Lines, the very impressive expansion on the grounds of White River Paint Ball on Columbus Avenue in Anderson. The place is amazing and it will definitely get your heart pumping. This isn’t just a single zip line, this is a zip line course, and it takes you a couple of hours to complete it.
In all, there are ten towers, seven zip lines, and three bridges. There is over a mile of zips and speeds can get up to approximately 30 miles per hour. The last zip is over 1,000 feet long. If you are short on time, they have a short course option which is four zip lines and no bridges.
Built throughout the woods of the property, the scenery is great and flying through the trees adds to the excitement. I was part of a seven person group that included my wife and 14-year-old son. Everyone in the group had a great time. My wife and son would have done it all day if they could have.
The staff at White River is fantastic. Two guides go with each group. One acts as the receiver and one as the sender. The receiver explains the zip or bridge and then goes across to catch the group as they fly in. He gives signals as to when you should start to break and helps you safely get to the next tower. The sender gets you strapped in and buckled up and sends you on your way. After everyone from the group has completed their flight, the sender zips over and you start the process again.
I truly was nervous most of the time. However, I always felt safe. You are always safely connected to either the zip line or a safety line on the tower. The guides also do a great job of helping you feel secure. We were definitely in good hands.
The most challenging—and nerve wracking—part of the day for me was the first bridge. It is a suspension bridge and the planks are spaced out from one another. Think of the bridge Shrek and Donkey crossed to get to Fiona the first time and you have a good idea of what I am talking about! You are still attached to a line when crossing the bridge, but I was extremely happy to get to the other side! The other two bridges are not quite as terrifying.
I am very glad I did it and look forward to doing the course again. It is a great new attraction for our county and will bring many visitors to the area. Recently I was out there on a Saturday and a group of five was about to do the course. Two of the group was from Dayton, Ohio, two from Greenwood, and one from Indianapolis. So it clearly will have a positive impact on our local tourism and economy.
Stop out for the adventure and see Anderson and Madison County from a whole new perspective!
News, notes, and thoughts— The world lost a great person recently with the passing of Bill Hardacre. Bill and his wife, Ann, have been involved in so many good things that have helped numerous people and our community. Sometimes they took the lead, sometimes they served as important cheerleaders, and they could always be counted on when needed. Bill was about 35 years older than me, and had accomplished so much. But, he never made me feel like a kid or someone who wasn’t as important as him. We had a great friendship and I am so blessed that we did. I had numerous conversations with him, and he always would tell me I was doing a great job at something, tell me to keep up the great work on something, or give me a thumbs up about something. His intelligence, compassion, enthusiasm, and goofy laugh will be missed. God speed, Bill…On a recent Saturday I started out at White River Zip Lines, spent the afternoon at Mounds State Park for a family cookout, then concluded the night at Anderson Speedway for the Little 500. It is definitely easy to spend a fun filled day in Madison County! To plan your fun in Madison County, don’t forget to check out our Trip Ideas videos on our web site!
--Tom Bannon is executive director of the Anderson/Madison County Visitors Bureau