Posted at 11:30 a.m.
Flavi, 4, and Violet, 8, were looking forward to our visit to Uplå. It must be said that they were immediately intrigued by my description of the activity: trampolines in the trees.
At the foot of Mount Saint-Grégoire, in Montérégie, I found the world of Uplå more surprising than I could have imagined. Eyes round like marble, my daughters assured me that this is the case for them too.
Forget the trampolines at many indoor theme parks. In Apollo, we jump on colored nets. A technique inspired by Breton sailors, Jean-François Couture, head of marketing at Trekking Group, the company behind the Seven Arbraska Gardens in Quebec, will explain it to us later.
The feel on these giant cobwebs is also quite different from that on a regular trampoline. The team on the site described it to us as a “feeling of weightlessness”.
As I launched myself with my daughters in the astonishing ascending snail that takes us 20 feet in the air, I tame this unique sensation. Every step is uncertain, as if the Holy Land I step on is absorbing it.
We get out on our first trampoline: a big black net that we jump on at our leisure. Honestly, it’s pretty impressive to jump and stand up!
We are only five on the trampoline, but I find it moves a lot. Fluffy, who has already fallen twice, agrees with me. What will the Uplå experience look like when the facilities get busier? Patrol rangers responsible for the safety of visitors will be present to enforce a limited number of people on the trampoline, Jean-François Couture assures us. “We will be opening time slots for families,” he adds, so young children can “customize places” at their own pace.
After about ten minutes in the grid, the whole family was able to keep their balance better, even when a group of young men passed by.
Then we explore the seven interconnected trampolines that make up the world of Uplå. In one of them, there are huge balls that you can throw or bounce. On the other hand, we play dribbling ball. There is even a double decker trampoline!
We go where we want in Uplå. There is no path to follow. “We like to create free universes. […] We wanted to provide a suitable place for the child to discover cuteness, motor skills and nature on his own,” explains Jean-Francois Couture.
What is that hole in the trampoline? One of the three web segments of the site. Girls are reluctant to try it. It looks very steep. Finally, we take turns getting off. It was our favorite of the day.
Uplå is also a tree-hung village, similar to those in Arbraska Gardens in Rigaud and Rawdon. Ropes, platforms, and nets connect these “smurfs’ houses,” as Fluffy called them. This person especially likes to cross the tunnel in the nets that lead to the hut decorated with chrysanthemums. I’m a little lower. Let’s say its constrained dimensions present a challenge to adults.
After 45 minutes of jumping and running, we need a break. Across the street, the Charbonneau sugar bush has a snack bar where you can fill up on energy. Mud in hand, Jacob Patenaud refueling there. How does an 11-year-old boy find the Uplå experience? “The first 10 minutes, it’s hard to adapt. After that, you jump higher and higher, which is really cool,” he says, before running to join his friends.
“Really cool” is also the description my daughters used throughout the two hour activity.
The oldest also find their accounts there, as Jean-François Couture maintains. “An adult is as fun as a child. The companies also planned to hold team building sessions there.
With this park open for 12 out of 12 months, the Uplå team wants to encourage young and old to “ditch the screens and reconnect with nature”.
To see the wide smile of the children present during our visit, we can say that the mission is accomplished.
“Are we going back, Mom?” Violet asks, her cheeks blushing from jumping so much, on the way back. “We’ll be back, that’s for sure. »