North Georgia Canopy Tours is a new outdoor attraction located in Lula, Georgia, about an hour or so north of Atlanta. The natural playground is located on 34 acres and provides a way for people to enjoy Georgia's scenery and wildlife from a unique perspective. Choose from two zip line tours. The Sky Bridge tour lasts about 2 hours and includes 9 zip lines and 2 swinging bridges. The longer Adventure Tour lasts about 3 hours and has 12 zips, 2 bridges and a rappelling adventure.
Both eco-tours include short hikes and you'll zip through the trees and over several ponds.
At the end of your journey you'll experience an exciting dual-zip where you can race another member of your group on a 680-foot line.
The entire tour is built to surpass all safety standards, so theres no need to be nervous. Your friendly, professionally trained guides will help you gear up and take you on a practice zip line just a few feet off the ground so you can get comfortable with the feeling of flying through the air. The zips get higher and faster as the course progresses. At times you'll be up to 70 feet off the ground and the longest line is 850 feet long!
North Georgia Canopy Tours opened in April 2010. They will soon be adding cabins for group adventures as well as picnic grounds.
Need to Know:
- Cost: The Sky Bridge Tour is $69/person. The Adventure Tour is $89/person. Group rates are available. Discounts for children and military.
- Location: Located in Lula, GA. From Atlanta this is accessed by taking I-85 to I-985. The trip from downtown takes about an hour and 15 minutes.
- Clothing: This is an eco-adventure that includes hiking. You will also be wearing a lot of safety equipment. Participants should wear comfortable, closed-toe shoes, avoid short shorts and skirt, pull back long hair and wear minimal jewelry. Leave valuable items at home and do not carry loose items in your pockets. If you wish to bring a camera, it must be on a strap and your guide can help you attach it to your harness.
Approaching North Georgia Canopy Tours, you get the feeling you're in for something exciting. Located in the small town of Lula, the location is within an easy drive of the city but still feels very remote. The location used to be a chicken farm and the company was able to re-purpose much of the old facilities and resources to create an eco-friendly attraction.
I had never been on a zip line before and I was about as nervous as anyone in my 8-person group. We put on a couple of pounds of safety gear, wiggling around until it felt at least somewhat comfortable, and our guides took us over to the practice area. Here we learned the basics of the art of zipping, including how we'd be clipped in, how to sit and, most importantly, how to break. They also had us practice pulling ourselves in for the rare occasion that you don't quite make it to the next platform on your zip line journey. This is a skill I, thankfully, never had to try out during my tour.
Then it was time to head to the first zip line, cleverly called "Flew the Coop," as we were departing from the old chicken coop. We were off and got our first taste of the flying sensation. Zipping was a lot of fun and was over so quickly that you barely had time to be afraid.
After the first leap, everyone in the group began to feel more comfortable and started to enjoy the scenery. A really neat part of the canopy tour experience is that it will change with every season. Being early spring, we could see straight to the ground and everything around us, affording soaring views of the vast property. In just a few weeks the trees will start to fill with leaves and the experience will be more of a jungle-like journey. I can only imagine how beautiful it will be in the fall when the foliage turns bright red and yellow.
Possibly more intimidating than the zip lines themselves are the treetop platforms you start and end from. High in the air on a platform with 9 other people, you start to get a bit nervous that you're too close to the edge, but it does help to know that your gear is always clipped securely to the structure even when you're just standing waiting your turn.
The sky bridges are a shaky but fun walk, stretching across the forest. As we zipped from tree to tree, our guides gave us information about the types of plants and trees we were seeing and told some fun stories about the local area. It was easy to see how this tour could be a perfect educational opportunity for a school group or boy scout troop.
The highlight of the adventure had to be climbing to the top of the lookout tower for the final zip - a dual-zip in which you can race another member of your group. Everyone got excited for the competition, and even though I lost my race I thought it was one of the most fun zips because you're out in the open and you cross over a large pond for an added thrill.
North Georgia Canopy Tours was a perfect day trip destination for me, being such a quick and easy drive from Atlanta. It is a great way to get outside and experience some of what the surrounding area has to offer while bonding with friends or family.