After a day resting by the hotel pool, today we returned to the adventure theme. A bus picked us up at 7:15 and took us to get fitted with harness and helmet. For the next 3 hours, we traversed 10 ziplines through the Angkor park. The gear was all top-notch and the entire enterprise as safety conscious as the Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb. Our guides had been with the company right from the start, carrying wood, and hauling materials up to the treetops. I asked how people were chosen for this work, whether they’d had any experience with rope work prior to Gibbons. Apparently the main criteria were good English and fitness.
Despite a fear of heights, I never felt uncomfortable. In fact, the highest point at 45m felt more like 10m, because the canopy of trees below is so dense it appears to be scrub on a hillside. The guides are so focussed on safety that they are not allowed to be distracted even for photos, but at stops, they would talk about the nature around us, pointing out the variety of trees, the squeal of cicadas and, back on ground, even drew a tarantula out of its hole. The day comes at a hefty price compared to other local activities, but it’s well worth the money.