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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Top 5 local destinations for adrenaline junkies

    Ryan Revock

    Ryan Revock/The Daily Wildcat

    A view from within Colossal Cave on Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2013.

    While Tucson has no shortage of dynamic dive bars, nightclubs, delectable restaurants and trendy hotspots, it does not offer much in terms of extreme weekend activities. These five hidden gems are sure to satisfy the adrenaline junkie in all of us — or at least give you something worth tweeting about to do this weekend.

    1. Colossal Cave Mountain Park: Explore the rugged terrain of Southern Arizona on the many tours that Colossal Cave offers. It’s the perfect getaway for those seeking a physical challenge: You’ll be provided with a headlamp and hard hat, and get the chance to explore nearly untouched parts of the cave in the park’s Ladder Tours. Be prepared for an adrenaline rush during this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

    Colossal Cave is located about 17 miles down Old Spanish Trail, at the sky islands that look out south to Mexico. The Ladder Tour is $25 per person for daytime tours, or $45 for a nighttime adventure that includes a buffet dinner.

    2. Skydiving at Casa Grande: The fearless adventurer can head to Skydive Arizona to experience a 120 mph free fall from 13,000 feet. Skydive Arizona offers the world’s largest drop zone and is the perfect opportunity for those who have considered skydiving — or are returning daredevils craving that rush like no other.

    Skydive Arizona is located in Eloy, which is about an 80-minute drive, halfway between Phoenix and Tucson. Prices will vary according to the altitude you wish to jump from, but lift fare starts at $25 for 13,000 feet. Warning: not for the faint of heart.

    *3. Fleur de Tucson Balloon Tours: * Beginning next month, experience breathtaking views via hot air balloon from up to 2,500 feet above the Tucson mountains and Saguaro National Park. Each ride offers a unique experience over the Tucson skyline, as well as low-level treetop views where wildlife such as javelinas, bobcats, foxes and hawks can almost always be seen. It’s a perfect escape into the natural beauty that northwest Tucson has to offer.

    Each balloon ride accommodates 2-5 passengers at $235 per person with the Internet Special, $275 regular price. This includes your 60-75 minute balloon ride and continental champagne brunch, as well as digital pictures of your entire ride!

    4. Nightfall at Old Tucson: If jumping out of planes is not really your thing, Nightfall at Old Tucson might be. Unique to the Halloween season, Nightfall offers crazed clown serial killers who will chase you with a chainsaw, “Terror Square” and specialty haunted houses designed to put you in the middle of a real-life horror movie. Whether you are looking to be terrified or just want to make fun of full-grown adults wearing zombie costumes, Nightfall is guaranteed to be an experience.

    Nightfall is conveniently located at Old Tucson and is open Thursday through Sunday, starting Sept. 27 and ending Oct. 31. There is an opening weekend special of only $15 per person the weekend of Sept. 27, so grab a group and prepare to be scared.

    *5. GLOW in Oracle: * This nighttime festival takes place this weekend in Oracle, by the light of the full moon. Complete with performance artists and light shows, it is described as a “festival of illumination and imagination.” The festival offers attendees two nights and five acres of light projections, multimedia installations, illuminated sculptures, theatrical performance and music from more than 100 artists.

    GLOW is located at North Triangle Ranch in Oracle, just 35 miles from campus. Shuttles for the event depart from Tucson Mall both nights. Admission is $12.50 per person per night, and discounted tickets can be purchased online in advance.

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