Category Archives: Go Ape Locations

Q & A With Buxton Site Manager: Liam McCabe

Go Ape Zip Wires

Liam McCabe - Go ApeLiam McCabe leads the tribe at our beautiful Buxton site in the heart of the Peak District. While he’s been in the activity industry for many years, here Liam tells us why his job at Go Ape is like no other, and why he’ll be eternally grateful to his fellow Go Ape buddy James Winter for recommending the company to him in the first place…

What made you join the Go Ape family in the first place?

I used to work at a place called PGL – a residential holiday camp for kids, based on adventurous experiences outside. Whilst I loved this aspect of the job, it was very much a 24/7 role. Because I lived on site, I was working in the evenings and was on-call throughout the night (meaning I’d get a knock on the door at 2am from a child having a nose bleed!).

A few of my mates worked at Go Ape and were always raving about how good it was and how the company looked after you really well. I felt I had reached the furthest I could go with PGL and had been there for most of my twenties, so when my good friend James Winter (then, manager of the Bedgebury site) told me he had a deputy job going, I jumped at the chance – it was time to try something new and settle down with my (now) wife. It was perfect timing really, as I was looking for something that was still based on adventurous experiences, but somewhere I could finish at the end of each day, shut the doors and switch off.

Did you experience Go Ape for yourself before taking the job?

I hadn’t, but once I knew I had an interview I had a look around one of the sites. I had done similar activities before – I used to be a paddler and work on other ropes sites – so knew I would love it.

What do you like about working for Go Ape?

It is extremely rewarding when you see customers laughing and having a good time. I also love the job because it is very different to when I was working purely with kids. When adults are involved, you hand over some of the responsibility to them, whereas with children you are very conscious that you are always the responsible one. With Go Ape, you let people have a bit more autonomy on the course – giving them the freedom to explore their own fears and learn the ropes (pardon the pun!) for themselves. At the same time, though, they know that we’re always on hand should they need us, but they don’t feel like they are being watched and judged the whole time. This puts the emphasis back on them so that they get more out of it, and there’s something satisfying about watching someone conquer their fears.

What makes your site unique?

Buxton is one of the highest of the Go Ape courses – it’s a very hilly site so there are plenty of long crossings and high platforms, and that has got to be our USP. From high up in the trees, I also think we have some of the best views out of all the Go Ape sites: you can see over Buxton itself, looking down over the town, the Peak District and over the moors. It’s a very picturesque course, and the views never cease to stop me in my tracks.

Finally, tell us a story that will put a smile on our faces…

I can certainly think of an embarrassing story…

Jodie Marsh once visited Go Ape Bedgebury when I worked there. At the end of the activity, we give out certificates – and on this occasion I was writing them in front of the customers. I was moving around the group asking names and writing the name in my best handwriting on the certificate. As I got to Jodie I said: “I know your name, believe it or not!” and wrote it out for her. When I got to the gent next to her, he said: “I bet you know my name then too?” I replied: “Are you her brother?“, to which he responded: “No I’m her boyfriend“. He looked a bit disappointed when I asked for his name. For some reason, I must have given the impression of being up-to-speed with celeb love stories!

5 Awesome Adventure Bloggers!

Adventure Bloggers - Love Adventure

Food, cars, travel, fashion…you name it, you can blog about it. But, for us Go Ape folk, nothing beats getting stuck into a good ol’ adventure blog. After all, adventure is our specialty…

From trekking the Himalayas to cycling Europe on a tandem, we love reading all about other people’s adventures. Aside from giving us itchy feet and turning us green with envy (thanks very much for sharing those pictures of you soaking up the sun in Oz), we find adventure blogs incredibly inspirational.

Read them, enjoy them, be inspired by them; heck, after reading them, you may even want to start an adventure of your own and blog about it! Here are five of our favourite adventure bloggers:

Adventurous Kate

It’s not a question of where Kate has been, but rather a question of where she hasn’t been. Kate packed in her job at the age of 26 and has since travelled to over 50 countries – solo. In her blog, you can read all about each destination and, in Kate’s words, learn how to travel “easily, safely and adventurously.”

We especially liked her post on zip-lining through the forest in Costa Rica.Expert Vagabond - How to seduce an ostrich

Expert Vagabond

Keen traveller and photographer Matt has been traveling the world for over 4 years. He’s super hot on adventure travel, defining it as “breaking out of your comfort zone, immersing yourself in different cultures and trying new things” (a man after our own hearts, we think). He has blogged about pretty much everything, from camping on erupting volcanoes and cage diving with great whites, to advice on ‘how to seduce an ostrich‘ (yep, that’s a real blog post…)

Hiking The Trail

Hiking The Trail is a blog about backpacking, hiking and camping. Written by Adam, it contains lots of helpful hiking gear reviews and survival tips. Although it’s an American blog, you can find several reviews of English hiking trails on there, too.

Mapping Megan

Megan and Mike are self-confessed adrenaline junkies that have been on the road since 2007. They’ve hiked the Inca Trail, biked in Bolivia and white-water rafted in Iceland…and they’ve written all about their experiences for you to read. Check out their post on 8 Amazing Trips from London, featuring our awesome Forest of Dean and Leeds Castle Tree Top Adventures. According the duo, “life begins outside of your comfort zone.” Hear, hear!

Go Ape - Forest of Dean


Matt confesses that he loves “attempting ridiculous adventures in far-flung places with a total lack of planning and common sense.” Sounds fun. His blog is perfect for people needing a crash-course on travelling and adventure. He offers advice on everything from finding cheap traveling gear to learning how to scuba dive.

Are you ready to start living life adventurously? Start today by booking a trip to Go Ape! From high ropes and stirrups to Tarzan swings to zip wires, our tree-top courses are jam-packed with outdoor adventure activities!

Do you #LoveAdventure? Your favourite trip could win you a three night cabin break with Forest Holidays! Simply tell us, in 50 characters or fewer, why you love adventure. Enter here, but be quick, the competition ends on 22nd February.

A Day Out In And Around The Lake District

Go Ape Zip Trekking Adventure

Pay a visit to Go Ape at Grizedale Forest and you are in for a really special treat. Not only is there an exciting Tree Top Adventure awaiting, you can also take in the view from the highest Go Ape platform, which stands at an impressive 18 metres up a Douglas Fir – that’s nearly 60 feet.

Swinging through the trees and hurtling down zip wires is a great way to bond with friends and gives you a real sense of adventure. What’s more, Go Ape at Grizedale Forest is also home to the zip trekking adventure – a series of seven tandem zip lines letting you glide through the branches. But, there’s plenty more to discover in the Lake District, here are some more ideas to keep you and your tribe occupied.

Where to go?

Explore Grizedale Forest

Whether you want to walk, cycle, ride a horse or hire a Segway to discover the forest, the choice is yours. Grizedale has nine marked walking trails which vary in length and difficulty. Whatever your mode of transport, this is your chance to explore hidden tarns, secret valleys and the highest point in the forest. You should also keep an eye out for 50 pieces of forest sculpture that have been concealed around the forest. Some are of animals, others play music and there are a few that are just plain bizarre. Spotting all 50 will be time well spent!

What to do?

Boating on the Lakes

Is there a better way to spend a lazy afternoon than messing about on the river – or in this case one of the area’s world-famous lakes? Not just for Toad, Ratty and Mole, there are a number of boating options on nearby Windermere and Coniston Lakes where you are able to hire boats and kayaks. If you want a less energetic alternative there are also opportunities to take scenic boat trips. Coniston Lake even has a Steam Yacht Gondola so you can really travel in style.

Where to eat?

The Kings Arms Hotel, Hawkshead

Just down the road from Go Ape at Grizedale Forest you will find The Kings Arms Hotel, a traditional Lakeland inn. Dating back to Elizabethan times, the inn offers visitors good food, real ales, and even a bed for the night. Whether you are after lunch, dinner or a packed lunch to take away with you for the day (if you are a resident) they are happy to help. The lunch menu includes light snacks and bar meals, while dinner includes everything from potted shrimps and Lakeland tapas to local steak and ale pie.

And something for a rainy day?

Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway

One of the great things about a day out at Go Ape is that a bit of rain will never spoil your fun. And as the saying goes, ‘there’s no such thing as bad weather, just inadequate clothing.’ So pack your waterproofs and get stuck in. If, however, you want to find somewhere you can dry off later in the day, a ride on one of Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway’s steam and diesel locomotives is perfect. You can take in the sights along this 3.2 miles of heritage track, which was first opened in 1869.

Don’t quit. Stay forest fit!


It’s now February and we’re sure a few of your New Year’s resolutions have been long forgotten.

Here’s a reminder that if you’re not a gym goer, why not make the most of your love of the great outdoors and try something unique?  For most people, working 45 minutes plus in the gym is a chore, but not on one of our much loved Go Ape adventures.

Forest Paths and Woodland Trails

Our beautiful British forests offer the perfect setting for getting out and staying trim – plus you’ll love working out there. Whether it’s walking through the forest paths, cycling round the woodland trails or heading up into the tree tops for an adventure!

Adventures at Go Ape.

There’s absolutely nothing that beats real-life adventure. We believe that through our adventures, people can get heaps out of it, and they’ll have more fun in the process. Adventures are an ideal way to keep fit. And, what’s more, half of the time you won’t even realise you’re exercising (because you’ll be having so much fun, of course!).


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