Zipping through the trees on the Otway Fly

By Carolyn Barry 29 September 2011
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There’s not shortage of adventures in the Otway ranges, but one of the funnest is the Otway Fly – a zipline through the trees.

THERE’S NO SHORTAGE OF adventures in the Otway ranges. After you’ve taken in the spectacular Great Ocean Walk, you can head up in to the ranges for some of the best mountain biking in the country, or hike to hidden waterfalls. You can also get amongst some of the tallest forests in Australia.

Patches of mountain ash trees have established themselves in the lush area near not far from the town of Forrest. And what better way to experience these giant trees than to walk, or fly, right amidst their highest branches.

The Otway fly is a new development, less than a year old. It’s got the latest and greatest technology in ziplines, meaning it can push the boundaries of fun.

A 2.5hr tour will have you zipping along six lines and two suspension bridges, one of which is 100m long, and anther that’s 30m above the ground.

Fly through the tall forest

The operators have used a design called an ‘eco-clip’ which uses tension forces to hold steel clips against the tree without having to drill into the trunk. Unlike other systems, the tree remains unaffected, being able to grow as usual.

Did I mention this is serious fun? The treetop guides are professional and the gear is bombproof, taking any worry out of hanging out about 20m above the ground. Part of the experience is to do a training fly just a metre or so above the ground so you know what to expect at height.

Guides will not only take you through the course, but will explain the history, different vegetation types and wildlife along the way.

After you finish the zipline, take an hour to wander along the treetop walk, which takes you even higher through the treetops. Some of the mountain ash trees are about 120m high and it’s hard not to be in awe of their size.

Be prepared for rain. This is the wettest area of Victoria, being saturated with about 2m of rain a year.

If you keep an eye out, you might spot a rare pink robin, with it’s black body and hot pink chest.

Fast facts:

Only a certain number of people can be on a station at any one time, so you need to book into a group.