Hit The Town Try-Athlon: Pick The Perfect Climbing Tree... In 5 Simple Steps.
Remember those halcyon days when it was socially permissible to skip through parks and forests, bounding over to trees like a small spaniel-monkey hybrid, then fearlessly scurrying up them as high as you could while squealing with glee? You might have thought those special times were lost to you –but you’re wrong.
Newsflash, folks: trees are for everyone.
If you’re in the market for a quick mood boost outdoors, take a second to raise your eyes. See any trees in the vicinity? Good. One of them could be the perfect chance to branch out of your everyday routine.
Pick the perfect climbing tree in 5 simple steps, flex your fingers, roll up your shirtsleeves, and see what happens next…
1. Size it up
The perfect climbing tree has a generous girth first and foremost. Its trunk is strong enough to support your bulk, with low, thick branches within reach where you stand – not to mention a route from that point that looks to be within your capabilities. Since trees are for everyone, you don’t want to be the moron who snaps the young sapling in half now, do you? Nope. We didn’t think so.
2. Beware of natural hazards
Ideally, once you start climbing, you won’t be giving passers-by a reason to shout out ‘TIMBER’. So if you’re happy with the size of your chosen tree, give it a good looking-over for signs of rot, especially in those crucial weight-bearing branches. And keep your eyes peeled for cavities too, and steer well clear – these could be home to nesting birds or other canopy-dwelling animals. Animals that could include swarms of angry bees.
3. Different species mean different adventures
Gripping on to some barks might make it feel like you’re climbing a wall made of ice. Others will be much easier to cling to, with helpful grooves and rivets to keep you going. So before you get going, decide which terrain you’re ready for. Tip: certain tree climbers swear by climbing barefoot, in order to get the firmest grip on the trunk. So, if you’re not bothered by the risk of splinters give it a go. Alternatively, flexible footwear with a sturdy sole should also do the job.
4. Keep your exit route in mind
If you’re being cautious, and you’ve picked the perfect climbing tree, the chances are you’ll have an amazing experience on the ascent: smelling the sap, watching light dapple through the canopy, and encountering newfound bundles of inner strength. Just don’t forget that what comes up must also come down, and if you’re planning to head all the way to the top, be sure that you can also return to the bottom – preferably without the assistance of the fire brigade.
5. Know your limits
Even the most perfect climbing tree has its risks – and, for some potential climbers, one of those risks might be a fear of being paralyzed by panic. If that sounds like it could be you, tackle your tree climbing challenge in small doses. First pick a short tree, for instance, in order that you’ll never be too high up. Or test yourself on a larger tree, but don’t go above the first rung of sturdy branches. Then gradually build yourself up over several days, pushing a little higher one climb at a time. A supportive buddy on the ground will be invaluable too. If nothing else, they can take some bodacious pictures when you finally reach the top. Just remember: you’ll always be climbing at your own risk.
Do you like the sound of a tree-climbing adventure? Why not give it a go as part of our special Hit the Town Try-Athlon? Pledge to try these 3 city-based activities in one day, and enjoy the sweet sensation of exploding your horizons in one hit.
For more, check out these
professional tree climbers.
and for more fun, ask yourself Should I Climb This Wall