Tree Canopy Walkway
Imagine being 40 feet high in the trees, harnessed and clipped to a series of swinging bridges spanning 150 feet. What could you see and hear? How would it feel to be walking through the trees or speeding toward the forest floor?
Want to find out? Take the family on a sky-high adventure. The Tree Canopy Walkway at the EcoTarium is the only place in New England where kids and adults can experience what it's like to walk at the tops of the trees-- or be a treetop scientist! Explore firsthand what's living up there and investigate the different kinds of trees that make up EcoTarium's forest. End your adventure by zipping down to the forest floor in our comfy (and secure) chair harness.
Tree Canopy Walkway Schedule for 2014
Weekends Only: May 24 - June 22
Saturday: 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 1 to 4 p.m.
Sunday: 12:30 to 4 p.m.
Daily: June 24 - August 24
Tuesday - Saturday: 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 1 to 4 p.m.
Sunday: 12:30 to 4 p.m.
Tree Canopy sessions last 30 minutes and start on the half hour. The Tree Canopy Walkway is closed from 12:30 to 1 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday.
$10 (plus museum admission), $8 EcoTarium members
Please purchase tickets at the Tickets & Information Desk upon arrival. Space is limited to 6 people per half hour session.
Preparing for your canopy adventure
- You must be dressed for treetop trekking. That means closed-toe, secure, covered shoes; knee-length shorts or long pants; and clothing appropriate to the weather. No skirts. No sandals.
- All children must be 5 or older and accompanied by an adult. Ages 12 and older can participate without a chaperone.
- Harnesses and helmets are provided to ensure your safety.
- To ensure your safety with our harnesses, you must weigh no more than 250 pounds.
- You will be asked to sign a release form. You may print it out below and bring with you, or complete one when you arrive.
- Please understand that we may need to limit access during heavy rain or high winds.
SAVE TIME! Print the Informed Consent-Liability Release Form, complete it and bring it with you to the EcoTarium. Please present it at the Information Desk when purchasing your Tree Canopy Walkway tickets. Completion of this form does not guarantee you a space on the Tree Canopy Walkway; tickets are sold at the Information Desk on a first-come, first-served basis.
What's a Tree Canopy Walkway?
EcoTarium's Tree Canopy Walkway is a series of platforms and rope bridges suspended more than 40 feet above ground among a grove of oak and hickory trees. Opened at EcoTarium in July 1999, it was the first in the country available for public use. The walkway is modeled after those built for scientific research in tropical and temperate forests around the world.
Only in the last 20 years have scientists begun to document the tremendous diversity of life high in the tree canopy. Researchers have estimated that millions of undiscovered species -- many of which are insects -- are hidden high above our heads in the leaf line of the trees. Scientists have developed ingenious techniques for accessing the canopy layer of the forest, including climbing ropes or ladders, inflatable "rafts" and "sleds" dropped from hot-air balloons, and tree canopy walkways.
EcoTarium's Tree Canopy Walkway was designed and constructed by Canopy Construction Associates, based in Amherst, Mass. The associates, all experienced canopy researchers and builders, have also installed walkways in Belize, Ecuador, Borneo and the Peruvian Amazon.
Visit our Facebook page to see step-by-step photographs of a trek through the Tree Canopy Walkway.