October 25, 2011
I never thought the first time I’d see the view from the top of Toronto’s CN Tower, it would be from outside.
At 9:00 a.m. one gorgeous September morning, I took a stroll around the CN Tower’s roof, 1,168 ft. above the ground, to test-drive the EdgeWalk attraction, which debuted in August.
Now, I’m not some kind of adrenaline junkie. I’ve never bungee-jumped or dove from a plane. But I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to see Toronto in this new and exciting way.
M&IT's assistant editor, Christine Otsuka, tested out Toronto's newest attraction, the CN Tower's EdgeWalk.
The walk itself is about 25 minutes, but the experience is three times as long, due to security and safety measures. When I arrive, I’m outfitted in a jumpsuit, stripped of anything that could fall below, given a breathalyzer, swabbed for narcotics and explosives and safety-checked repeatedly.
At the top of the tower, as my anticipation reaches new heights, an EdgeWalk crew member plays a delightfully amusing but highly inappropriate song to get our group fired up: Van Halen’s “Jump.”
It’s time. I walk along the metal platform, toward the edge. No guardrails: nothing to hang onto. I’m instructed to hang my toes over the edge and look down. Even with no (realized) fear of heights, my legs become weak.
It takes a few minutes for my body to trust the cable that keeps me safe. But after I stick my backside out over the edge and look between my legs at the seemingly miniature cars and buildings below, trust is all I can possibly feel.
Before long, I’m standing on my tiptoes, leaning forward off the edge and spreading my arms a la Kate Winslet in Titanic.
With an unobstructed view – nothing but city, sky and water – Toronto never looked so beautiful…or so big.
Experiencing something so grandiose, I can’t help but bond with my fellow walkers in the shared experience. There were three of us that day, but the CN Tower allows up to six participants, plus guide, on each walk.
They say since the attraction opened, they’ve had a few people cry up there out of fear. For me, the saddest part about the whole experience was coming down. But it’s something I get to re-live in the tale.
Admission is $175 and includes photos, video and access to the tower. But truthfully, I don’t think the observation deck would be very satisfying, after seeing the view from outside.