Forget slinking around on the jury-rigged contraption of slack rope and handlebars that your dad hacked together in your backyard. Crested Butte's Zipline Canopy Tour – the first of its kind at a Colorado ski resort – starts you off in the relative stratosphere at 9,300 feet before sending you barreling at up to 30 mph through the treetops. It's the kind of zipping that'll leave you breathless (not least because of the altitude).
At first glance, the 1.5-hour tour looks a tad leisurely to downhill thrill-seekers that regularly visit the mountain. But our group positively whizzed over the seemingly slow-moving mountain bikers crawling over the Evolution Bike Park trails. Along the way, we experienced mind-blowing, unobstructed access to views of the mountains and surrounding wildflower-covered meadows.
Plus, we had some fun in the safety harness. We ran full-speed off the edge of one platform, launching toward Aspen treetop. Then, we went cannonball-style off the tallest 40-foot drops, and, for good measure, plunged backward off another ("Just try not to flip over," said Trippe, our guide). In all, the zip tour is a gratifying addition to a summer mountain-biking regimen; the perfect respite between challenging singletrack and your first beer.
More information: The Crested Butte Zipline Canopy Tour runs from June 9th through September 3rd. [$59, includes a 5-point harness and other equipment]