|Riders trying out the zip line linking Pulau Gaya and Pulau Sapi near Kota Kinabalu.|
KOTA KINABALU: Sabah now has the world’s longest zip line – the bigger-scale version of the flying fox that enables users to traverse from the top to the bottom of a cable attached to a moving pulley – that will give the thrill of literally sailing from the air from one island to another at the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park.
Sabah Parks chairman Tengku Zainal Adlin Tengku Mahamood is scheduled to open the 250m-long zip line, linking Pualau Gaya and Pulau Sapi, today. Set up by local firm Ropeskills Rigging Sdn Bhd, the zip line enables visitors to cross the narrow straits between both islands in about 30 to 40 seconds.
Ropeskills Rigging director Simon Amos said the starting point of the line was atop a hill at Pulau Gaya, about 45m above sea level, and riders gradually descend to a 8m-high platform at Pulau Sapi. “The ride is an adrenaline rush. You’re seeing the sea and having the experience of flying,” he said, adding that it took his company about six months to build the zip line.
The zip line operates between 10am and 4pm daily but the company could operate after these hours upon request.
“The views from a ride at sunset is absolutely fantastic,” said Simon. He said the zip line used the latest technology to ensure the highest safety standards, adding that the trolleys with handles ensured riders always faced forward.
The company earned a reputation for providing rigging during Prince William and Kate Middleton’s visit to the Danum Valley, 83km southwest of Lahad Datu, in 2012, and for renowned British naturalist Sir David Attenborough’s filming of Sabah’s wildlife at Gomantong Caves, outside Sandakan, earlier this year.