For you Cleveland thrill seekers who also love animals, here’s your chance for an adventure that will satisfy both of your interests. The Wilds, the largest wildlife conservation center in North America (nearly 10,000 acres), is now offering the Zipline Safari experience giving visitors a chance to soar on a series of 10 ziplines over various natural, open-range pastures that are home to numerous rare and exotic endangered animals. The Wilds is located in Cumberland, Ohio (between Cambridge and Marietta) and it is approximately a 2.5 hour drive from Cleveland.
Zipline Safari This 2.5 hour tour is led by two professionally trained guides and the course consists of 10 ziplines (made of 1/2 inch-thick cable) and a rappel built on a series of observation decks that overlook more than 30 species of exotic animals that live at the Wilds. Guests are placed in a safety harness attached to hooks and a pulley and then step off the elevated platforms to begin their adventure.
The course sends you zipping along the network of cables (The longest leg is 780 feet) over animal watering holes, pastures, lakes and through the trees until you finally land on the observation deck among the giraffes. Zipline speeds are 40 – 50 MPH with each zipline designed to slow down toward the end.
Visitors are given a training session by the guides on a short practice zipline before their experience begins. Participants are also taught how to brake themselves for landing on each platform.
The guides will point out the various animals and give information about them and talk about the WIlds in general on each observation platform between each leg of the adventure.
The Wilds’ Zipline Safari is open daily from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. through October. Cost is $84 per person. The Zipline Safari is offering a Kid’s Special where each child between the ages of 10- 15 are half off per each regular priced adult (18 and older) on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Parking is $5.
Participants on the Zipline Safari must be at least 10 years of age and must weigh between 70 and 250 pounds. Closed toed shoes are required of all participants.
For those visitors to the Wilds who do not want to partake of the zipline but do want to see the animals, there are two guided tour options. One option is the Safari Transport Pass where you will board an enclosed vehicle and tour the pasture areas. The vehicle makes several destination stops where visitors can exit the vehicle and explore these destinations at their own pace. The transport vehicles run on a shuttle system every 10-20 minutes and visitors can catch another vehicle when they are ready to continue the tour.
The other tour option is the Open-Air Safari which is an open-air vehicle which provides better opportunities to the visitors for wildlife viewing and photo opportunities. The guided tour itself is the same as the Safari Transport. Open-Air Safari vehicles depart the Visitor Center hourly.
Cost of the Safari Transport Pass is $20 for adults, $19 for seniors and $15 for children 4-12. Cost for the Open-Air Safari is $30 per person, all ages.
The Wilds is located at 14000 International Rd. in Cumberland, Ohio. 740-638-5030. The Wilds is 141 miles from Cleveland and it is approximately a 2.5 hour drive.