As voted by Trekaroo families, here are the Reviews of the Day from back in the day to today.
I cannot stop raving about High Point Climbing and Fitness. It was truly one of the highlights of our Chattanooga vacation. My girls keep asking to go back. Every. Single. Day.
Why do I love this place so much? Let’s start with the HUGE kids area. In the Kid’s Zone you can scale a dinosaur skeleton, climb up a giraffe’s back, and even leap from 20 foot buildings! There is even a kid sized bouldering wall! Big and little monkeys won’t be able to get enough of this fun filled climbing room!
Teens and adults will absolutely LOVE the outdoor climbing wall as well as the many indoor walls and an extensive bouldering area for those that like to free climb.
A couple of tips for your visit:
Before your visit take a few minutes to fill out the online waiver so you don’t have to waste time filling it out when you get there.
Pay attention during the orientation. The gym uses an auto belay system for climbing safety and it’s very important that you know how to properly hook and unhook yourself and your kids from it. Ask questions if you need to, but make sure you are comfortable with it before hitting the gym.
Plan to spend a lot of time here. This 30,000 square foot gym is not something that you are going to experience in an hour so plan to spend at least 2-3 hours here, or in the case of my family 5-6. Your pass is good for all day use, and at only $15 per person (as of July, 2015) it is a spectacular deal for everything you get.
If you are visiting Chattanooga, you have to make sure that this place is at the top of your to do list!
*Disclosure - I was given complimentary admission in order to facilitate a review, however all opinions are my own.
Wow! Standing on the Athabasca Glacier at the Colubmia Icefield was one of the most memorable experiences on our whole Canadian adventure.
Located just north of Banff National Park, officially in the Jasper National Park boundary, the Columbia Icefield Glacier Adventure allows families to walk on a glacier-- this chance sadly might not be around forever as glaciers are melting faster than expected.
The tour is not inexpensive, so families will want to save up to do this experience. I was not certain if the price was worth it for a 20 minute walk on a cold chunk of ice paired with a bus ride, but I certainly believe it is now. In addition to the short walk on ice, the ride to the glacier is one of the most exhilarating parts of the journey as an experienced guide shares information about glaciers, icefields, and climate change. If that doesn't sound exciting, think again. The giant Brewster Ice Explorer buses that take you on a 5K journey over the snow and safely to the glacier are impressively massive and take families on the steepest grade in North America to get there!
When we got out to walk on the glacier, it was truly amazing. The stunning blue color of the compacted snow, which is estimated to have fallen over 200 years ago, was as equally memorable as its grandeur is hard to describe. Our time seemed to pass so quickly, I was sad to leave. In addition to standing on the Athabasca glacier, two other glaciers are observable from the observation area, if you luck out and get a clear day.
Tip: My youngest two children loved being on the glacier and didn't want to leave, but my oldest was a bit fearful after hearing talks about avalanches and glacier movement on the journey to the icefield. Know your kids; the last thing you want to do is spend your time on the glacier with a crying, fearful kid.
In addition to the icefield tour, the Glacier Skywalk is another thrilling option for families to explore. My girls were a bit too intimidated by the images of the glass walkway overlooking 900 feet of Canadian Rockies below, so we didn't make the trek. Had I been on my own, we definitely would have done this activity.
Tips on visiting:
* Reservations are not required, but plan to wait a bit in line to get your tickets, which are ticketed at a specific time.
* Make sure your kids use the washroom before boarding either tour bus. There are (obviously) no facilities on the glacier.
* A restaurant and cafeteria style buffet are located at the Discovery Centre. Lines can be a bit crazy during peak visiting hours (we visited on a Saturday in June and the Centre felt like Grand Central Station), so plan for extra time.
*Don't miss reading and discovering more about the glaciers and climate control on the panels outdoors leading to the Centre.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary Glacier tour for the purpose of this review; I was not required to state any particular view. All opinions remain my own.
We visited the Pacific Science Center with our three year old daughter. The visiting exhibit was all about Fear...most of the exhibits in this area were not really appropriate for her (though my husband I enjoyed them). However, there were many other exhibit areas that were great for her. The toddler play area, which includes a long water table, was a big hit. She loved playing in the music room and driving the car and helicopter. The touch pool was also neat...lots of little sea critters to see and touch.
We were able to get in for free because of our science center membership from our local science center (part of the ASTC Passport program). Free is always good! If you have a science center membership from your area, be sure to check if you can get in free to other science centers...we have saved a lot of money by using our science center membership whenever we travel.
The location is great. Right in the heart of Seattle, at Seattle Center, right near the Space Needle. If you're visiting the city, chances are you'll be near here.
Overall, this science center has a lot to offer and is definitely worth a visit.
Stewart Falls is a beautiful hike that ends at a very chilly waterfall. The hike itself is fine for older children. I took a 4, 9, 11, and 13 year old. My 4 year old fell several times on the way back and my 9 year old fell twice. There are lots of rocks and tree roots to look out for and sometimes they didn't look carefully enough! My older kids were fine on the hike.
We set out from the Aspen Grove trailhead after a crazy google maps fiasco. Don't type Stewart Falls in google and expect it to find the trailhead. It will try to take you directly to Stewart Falls (which is impossible). The trailhead is just a few feet after you pass Aspen Grove. You will actually enter the Uinta National Forest at the ranger station (and yes, you must pay $6 to enter...credit cards accepted). The parking lot and trailhead are right after the ranger station. There is a pit toilet and a water spigot.
Come prepared for this hike! It's 2 miles in and 2 miles back. We spent about 3 hours hiking, eating lunch and playing in the falls. Take lots of water and take snacks. Chances are you'll need a few breaks a long the way, especially if you take little ones. We set out around 11am which was way too late in the day. I would have preferred to start around 9:30. It would have made for a much cooler return trip.
Overall, I would recommend this hike to families with older children. Young ones can do it, but plan on spending extra time and bring some band-aids...just in case!
Stewart Falls is a great beginning to intermediate hike for families. It’s great because there is a payoff at the end of this hike – a beautiful 200 foot 2 tiered waterfall with plenty of pools for the kids to play in.
This hike to Stewart Falls is a 3.5 mile round trip hike from the Sundance Ski Resort or the trailhead at Aspen Grove along the scenic Alpine Loop in American Fork Canyon. Note that there is a small fee to enter American Fork Canyon but families with the National Park Annual Access pass get in free. There are some fairly steep switchbacks along the trail but kids 5 and older should be able to climb. I carried our baby in an baby backpack and she loved the scenery. Late spring and fall hikes to Stewart Falls provide the best weather for hiking this trail as certain portions of the trail can be quite hot in summer months.
There is also a shorter and easier option to hike to these falls if families prefer to ride the chair lift to the top of Ray’s Summit which is accessed from the Sundance Ski Resort. The ride on the chair lift is quite fun and scenic and provides a good option to explore the area. Either way, the hike to Stewart Falls is enjoyable and very beautiful as you travel through wildflower and forested areas.
I would suggest bringing plenty of snacks and drinks because kids will definitely want to stay at the base of this waterfall for a while. There are some nice places for kids to throw rocks or wade along the pools below the falls. Don't forget the camera as this hike is full of perfect photo opportunities!