The N.C. Zoo is opening an exciting addition to its offerings this week. Air Hike opens Friday, giving visitors a unique opportunity to see the the zoo from the trees.
You'll find the forest exploration ropes course in the zoo's Africa region between Junction Plaza and the Aviary. Zoo visitors can challenge their physical abilities by testing their balance and climbing skills in a series of 23 obstacles, according to a press release.
Tickets will be $12 and can be purchased at Air Hike's entrance. It will be open 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., daily, from May through October. Ticket sales will end at 4 p.m. each day. It's first come, first served and should take visitors about 30 minutes to 60 minutes to complete.
During the experience, a trained professional will serve as the guest’s guide for the adventure. Visitors are asked to closely follow the guide’s instructions and training.
There are a few things to know before you go:
- The minimum height for participants is 48 inches. If somebody is under 60 inches of height, they must be with another participant who is at least 60 inches tall.
- Guests are asked to wear secure shoes. Shoes with either open toes or open heels are not allowed.
- Because of the elevated course and full body harness, dresses and skirts are not allowed.
- Visitors will need to empty their pockets and store their backpacks before they go up in the trees. Storage compartments are available at ticketing. Item like cameras, sunglasses, fanny packs and water bottles must be strapped on. No backpacks or loose items are allowed.
It's been a big couple of months for the N.C. Zoo, which is in Asheboro about 90 minutes from the Triangle. Zoofari, an open air bus ride through the Africa grasslands, opened in April. The 45-minute ride includes views of animals such as rhinos and ostriches, along with distant looks at the zoo's elephants. Tickets are $20 for Zoofari. The ride runs at 11 a.m. and noon, Thursday through Sunday. Ticket sales are at 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. It is first come, first served.
And the new ocelot habitat just outside the Mangum Desert opened on May 9 and features a male and female ocelot.