When we were planning our trip to Canada and knew we were going to be heading to Toronto, the first thing which came to my mind was the iconic CN Tower. Standing at 553 metres tall with a claim to being the tallest freestanding structure in the Western Hemisphere a visit to the tower was at the top of our agenda! I had to see the view of this modern metropolis from here, a little like a modern Eiffel Tower, it just had to be done!
We started looking at tickets, about the skypod, the viewing platform, the glass floor section, the revolving restaurant…but wait a minute….you can walk outside…on a platform around the perimeter…with no railings…just a harness attached to a pole above you saving you from certain death…AND YOU CAN HANG OUT OVER THE EDGE!!! WHAT??
We were very brave sitting there in the UK in front of our laptop…we were doing it! We booked the tickets ($199 can + tax) and I started bragging to anyone who would listen about how we were doing it!
The walk is on a platform above the restaurant 356 metres up! The platform is about 5 feet wide, there are no railings, and you wear a funky red suit…mine was surely a child’s size! You then wear a harness which then attaches to a rope connecting to a pole above your head which runs around above the platform.
When we got to Toronto and I looked up at the tower, this was the first time I thought “Really?” I stayed positive though, I knew if I over thought it too much it would make it harder for myself…why was I doing this? I hate heights? There is a glass floor section at the Eiffel Tower now, last time I visited there…I couldn’t even step out on that!! How was I going to do this??
We arrived just before our allotted time and were sent through for the safety briefing and met our guides. Nothing is allowed to be carried up during the walk, no jewellery, no cameras, nothing except eyeglasses which are taped to a strap and attached to a harness, the risk of something being dropped from the edge here is too great. Those thinking of taking their own camera equipment will be disappointed. There are lockers in the briefing area though.
So I squeezed myself into my child’s size red suit (I’m sure it wasn’t adult size!) got strapped into my harness, everything was checked, double and triple checked, they take safety seriously! Then we headed up in the lift. When we got to the top we went into a control room and were connected to the ropes attached to the pole above. We were told about the weight this system would take and it was something extreme like the equivalent of 7 elephants! It was reassuring but I was beginning to get butterflies in my stomach, plus I would be going out of the door first in our group…great!
So the doors opened, our guide went out first then called me out… when thinking about it I was sure that this would be one of the most difficult bits, the first step out, but when I actually did it, all I could think of was “WOW!”. There was no real fear…yet! I was just hit by this view, we were above the skyscrapers and could see 40-60km in each direction! It was one of the most incredible views I had ever seen! We were so lucky with the conditions as well, barely a cloud in the sky, we could actually see the buildings at Niagara Falls the other side of Lake Ontario!
Then came the first of the skills which, the guide said, would help us to get the most out of our experience! It started off fairly mild….we were to step to the edge so our toes were just over the edge, with absolutely nothing beneath, except the ground 356 metres below, let go of the ropes we were attached to, place both arms out and shout “HELLO TORONTO!” I went big! The adrenaline had begun to kick in…the tourists at Niagara Falls would have heard me shouting!
Then came the tricky ones, we were going to hang out over the edge! The process was that you would sit and let the harness take your weight and then step your feet backwards till you reached the edge, then with your feet on the corner of the platform, straighten your legs out! Every bone in my body was telling me that this was wrong…it is one of the most un-natural things to ever put yourself through…even knowing how safe everything was, to put your total trust in the equipment for me took a huge amount of faith, I did it, and eventually took my hands off the rope and held them out…the sensation was amazing, I even managed to take a look down at the floor between my legs! From that height people really did look like ants!
Then came the most terrifying one, doing the same thing, but face first!!! Hanging out over the edge so your face is pointing down towards the floor!! I stuttered on this one…I went back then had to re-do it….this really pushed me to my limits….but I was so pleased to have done it and pushed myself…it really was a massive adrenaline rush, awesome!!
So we continued our walk around the entire circumference pausing for more poses and photographs, it was amazing, and I got more and more comfortable with it, even walking with my hands free not holding onto anything, but my legs always felt slightly shaky I was never 100% fine with it!
We got even more lucky…as we were walking around the Breitling Air Display team began their air show right in front of us! We had the best seats in the house! We were actually above the planes for a lot of their display! Amazing!!
When it was all over we collected our photographs and DVD taken by the guides and paid extra for the photographs to be copied onto a USB stick. We were both so glad to have done it, when we got outside and looked back up at what we had just done…wow!
The ticket includes entry to the Skypod, a glass enclosed viewing platform above the EdgeWalk, and the viewing level just below this where you can look out through a metal mesh, there is also the glass floor section on this level.
But to experience the best views, the best rush, a huge adrenaline rush, and conquer your fears…it has to be the EdgeWalk!
Thanks for checking this out…if you are in Toronto…this for me is a must!