Vineyard and Zipline Trends Collide at the Pinot Express

Chris Leschinsky

Vineyards and ziplines have long been used to attract tourist dollars for destinations that, well, could use a little help:

  • Regardless of the area’s suitability for growing grapes, plop down a vineyard or winery and travelers will come for a taste and buy a sympathy bottle (pro tip: go for the ice wine as it’s harder to mess up)
  • Ski resorts looking to attract off-season dollars or stale attractions looking to draw media coverage and visitors hook up a zipline

So really, the 1,800-foot Pinot Express zipline at Margarita Adventures, which debuted recently at the Santa Margarita Ranch in the Paso Robles wine country on California’s Central Coast, is the travel industry’s destiny.The zipline begins atop a mountainside forest, 125 feet above the ground, then sends swoops low over pinot noir vines. It’s the highest, longest and fastest of Margarita Adventures’s four ziplines. A zipline tour costs $99

“Tours conclude with an optional tasting at the affiliated Ancient Peaks Winery, which specializes in artisan wines grown on the ranch’s estate Margarita Vineyard. Tour guests receive 20 percent off wine purchases, and the tasting fee is waived with a purchase of one bottle or more,” according to the press release.

“You can taste wines from vines that you just zipped over,” said proprietor Karl Wittstrom said. “It’s a fitting reward for your adventure.”

Voodoo Zip Line Will Soon Soar Over Vegas

zip line
Voodoo Zipline photo

Opening in November, the Voodoo Zip Line will connect two towers at Las Vegas’ Rio casino. Starting at the 50th floor of the Masquerade Tower at the VooDoo Steakhouse, riders will travel a third-mile to the 20th floor of the Impanema Tower in about 70 seconds. Riders soar nearly 500 feet above Las Vegas at 33 miles per hour.

Need more zip line? Voodoo Skyline is not the only one in Vegas. Slotzilla, located at the Fremont Street Experience, lets riders take off from a 12 story high slot machine-like platform just below the Viva Vision canopy. Flying at a choice of either 70 or 110 feet above Fremont Street, this one looks to be a tamer version of the Voodoo Zip Line. Interesting, but a one-way ride.Riders on the Voodoo Zip Line will travel 845 feet from tower to tower then make a return trip via a motorized pulley system, traveling backward at 25 mph.

Kids Adventure Pass Is Ticket To Fun At Mammoth Mountain This Summer

Mammoth Mountain's Adventure Pass provides unlimited climbing, zipping and mountain biking.Mammoth Mountain has introduced a new and very affordable option for family fun this summer. The California resort, which is a fantastic destination for outdoor fun all year long, is now offering an “Adventure Pass” for kids under the age of 12. That pass provides a full day of fun for the low price of just $29.

Purchasing the Adventure Pass provides unlimited access to the resort’s climbing wall and newly upgraded zip line, as well as a new bungee trampoline that is scheduled to open soon. Additionally, the pass grants all-day access to the Mammoth mountain bike trails and lift access to the top of the peak too. That’s a lot of fun and excitement packed into one day without a great deal of investment.

The climbing wall is open every day and features numerous routes that range from very easy to darn near impossible. Mammoth staff is on hand at all times to ensure a safe environment as well as to provide support and encouragement. And after they’ve conquered the wall, the kids will be more than ready to take on the resort’s 306-foot zip line, which hangs 25 feet in the air and sails above the scenic terrain near the Adventure Center.

That’s just the start of the fun at Mammoth, however, as the resort offers gondola rides above the Sierra Mountains, shuttles to the nearby Reds Meadow and Devil’s Postpile National Monument, fine dining, shopping and much more. For more information, checkout the Adventure Center webpage and start planning your Mammoth visit.

Video: Nepal’s Extreme Zip Line

When High Ground Adventures in Nepal decided they wanted to build a zip line, they knew they wanted it to be long, tall and fast. Their Zipflyer meets that description and then some. Riders reach speeds in excess of 85 miles per hour while dangling high above the desert floor. The two-minute ride covers nearly 6000 feet while dropping almost 2000 feet in the process.

For those of us who won’t be making the journey to the town of Pokhara any time soon, which is where the Zipflyer is located, we’ll just have to settle for the video below. It looks like a fun ride, although that first step is kind of scary.


Video of the Day: Zipline Fail

When did ziplines become so prevalent? Somewhere along the way, we went from traveling to places to either relax or explore local cultures to careening through trees on a series of cables. When did this happen? Why are they so popular? Beyond that, I have a hard time believe that everyone staffing these ziplines knows what they are doing. I mean, are there accredited zipline certification programs? If there are, I’m certain that the folks in this video failed to pass the required courses.