Slacklining — walking on a 1-inch thick strip of webbing strung between two objects — got its start as a downtime activity to keep hyperactive rock climbers occupied between first ascents in Yosemite in the 1980s. The fringe sport has grown dramatically since, spawning offshoots like highlining (walking across a slackline strung high above the ground) and tricklining (using the line as a sort of trampoline and performing gymnastic-style tricks) along with competitions around the globe. Now, thanks to 18-year-old Alex Mason and Andy Lewis, one of the godfathers of the sport, you can take a scenic, somewhat treacherous, hike on a slackline too.
“Slackladder was an idea that came about from connecting point A to point B,” says Mason. “We wanted to take a natural environment like a set of spectacular waterfalls in Hawaii and be able to walk up the natural landscape via a slackline ladder.”
Using roughly a mile of ropes and cables zig-zagging up the numerous waterfalls, Lewis created a system that allowed you to walk, bounce, and grab slacklines in one epic ascent.
“The location allowed us to rig a series of lines in the perfect way to ascend the waterfalls while also showcasing a series of tricks,” says Lewis. “The pools of water were deep and provided good falls on portions of two of the lines, however the other six were 100 percent no-fall zones.”